In the run-up to next year's Olympics, construction is everywhere — everywhere except, perhaps, in the places it is most needed. While the government is rushing to put its best foot forward and put a polish on Japan's capital and environs, the situation is becoming increasingly dire in rural areas, which face not only an aging population, but a crumbling infrastructure and scant budget to patch it up.

Writing in Flash (Oct. 15), Osaka-based photojournalist Jiro Shinbo looked at the state of Japan's deteriorating infrastructure in the aftermath of destructive Typhoon Faxai on Sept. 9.

In what observers called nakizura ni hachi (a bee stinging a crying face or, in other words, adding insult to injury), the 15th typhoon of the year was followed a month later by the wetter and considerably more deadly Typhoon Hagibis.