Constitution Day with the Tokyo Riot Police

Constitution Day with the Tokyo Riot Police

Today is Constitution Day in Japan.    Japan’s current constitution implemented after World War II in 1947 was drawn up to replace Japan’s militaristic and absolute monarchy and replace it with democracy.   It turned the Emperor of Japan into “the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people” and exercises a purely ceremonial role.   It also formally rejects Japan’s right to wage war which is why it is commonly referred to as the Peace Constitution.

今日は憲法記念日(けんぽうきねんび)です。日本の憲法(けんぽう)は平和(へいわ)憲法です。

Japanese Word of the Day: すし詰め(すしづめ)sushizume – jam-packed, to be packed like sushi

Today’s configuration: Today I shot my Leica M9 and I shot all of my lens: Summilux 21mm f/1.4, Summilux 35mm f/1.4, Noctilux 50mm f/0.95.

今日のカメラ:私のライカM9をつかいます。レンズをぜんぶつかいきりました。

I started off playing with depth of field on my 35mm to see how much I could isolate an image.   I can’t get too close with 35mm but here is what I could get at f/1.4.

Playing with depth of field in my yard

Nice orderly ‘No Parking’ signs.   Clean, clear message. ここは駐車禁止(ちゅうしゃきんし)でしょう!

I like clarity with 'No Parking' signs.

One thing I love about Tokyo is there are convenience stores everywhere.    Very, ah, convenient!  東京にたくさんコンビニがあります。べんりです。

7-11 in Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Crossing in front of Nakameguro Station in Tokyo, Japan

Pizzeria e trattoria de ISA in Nakameguro.  I keep meaning to try this place.   It is also busy when I go by.  I ate at the owners previous restaurant in Omotesando and it was so good. このみせはおいしそうですね。いつもいそがしいです。ここでたべたいです。

Pizzeria e trattoria da isa in Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Perfect car for this place…can’t fit any pizza though.  この車おもしろいです。

Fiat Abartha 595 in front of Pizzeria e trattoria da isa in Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Pokemon! ポケモン!

Pokemon in Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

I had to run back to Don Quijote to pick up some batteries as the remote control little car I got Kai last night ran out of batteries.    Poor Daddy planning…  私はわるいパパです。海ちゃんのあたらしい車のでんちがないんです。

Don Quijote in Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Don Quijote in Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

More Tokyo Graffiti.

Graffiti in Tokyo, Japan

Graffiti in Tokyo, Japan

Choices… どちらにいきましょうか?

Choices

Cute little kid… かわいいこどもです。。。

Cute kid in Nakameguro

I saw a new report yesterday that Japan is still rationing Eggs and Toilet Paper…sigh…if anyone believes that and is having trouble getting these products in Tokyo, I have eggs I can sell you for 1,000 yen a dozen and toilet paper for 2,000 a 4 pack.   東京にはもうたまごとトイレットペーパーがあります。大丈夫(だいじょうぶ)です。

Eggs in Precce, Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Toilet Paper in Precce, Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Kai and I went over to visit the hariy crabs while during the Sunday shopping. 私は海ちゃんとカニにあいにいきました。

Fish in Precce, Nakameguro, Tokyo, Japan

Stained Glass!   You never see stained glass in Tokyo.  東京にはあまりステンドグラスがありません。

Stained Glass in Train Station in Tokyo, Japan

After family shopping I decided to head down to the hotly debated Yasukuni Shrine to see if there was anyone protesting Constitution Day.    I don’t wish to talk politics on this site but rather explain what I was seeing today without judgement so people who might not understand all of this can.  Yasukuni Shrine was formed in 1869 on the orders of Emperor Meiji and is dedicated to the souls of about 2.5 million Japanese men, women and children who died in the name of their country since that time.    They include soldiers, war-time nurses, students who entered into battle, and those who committed suicide in shame at the end of World War II.    At the centre of the shrine’s controversy is the fact that those venerated include 14 convicted class A war criminals, including Prime Minister General Hideki Tojo.    This shrine as been the site of many protests with view points for and against.     I am not sure if this is by design but I had the hardest time finding the station.  My trusty Metro application on my iPhone couldn’t find the station, even the map on the train didn’t list it.

むずかしいです。。。

Tokyo Train Map

But when I got off it was there…

Tokyo Train Map

Kudanshita Station in Tokyo, Japan

This way to Yasukuni Shrine… こちら靖国神社です。。。

Yasakuni Shrine this way

Yasakuni Shrine this way

Not everyone in Japan agrees with the new constitution and some people would prefer that the Emperor is ‘returned to power’.    You can often see these vans parading through Tokyo blaring messages to that effect. この人たちは日本のあたらしいけんぽうにはどういしません。

Black Vans in Tokyo

The shrine was much more lively than I expected. じんじゃはしずかです。

Yasakuni Shrine in Tokyo, Japan

Yasakuni Shrine in Tokyo, Japan

I decided to head down to Tokyo Station and the Tokyo International Forum to see if I could find some new subject matter to shoot and on the way I found where all of the Black Vans were….東京駅と東京こくさいフォーラムにいきます。

Black Vans in Ginza

and Tokyo’s Riot Police…東京機動隊(きどうたい)!!

Black Vans in Ginza

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

The Black Vans were lining the street and the Tokyo Riot Police were lining them.    Nothing overly exciting…a bit of a modern day standoff.

Black Vans and the Tokyo Riot Police

I started to head toward Tokyo Station and found more of them…. and a big Riot Police Bus blocking one of the vans from passing.

Tokyo Riot Police

Since it is Golden Week and I can fix my shooting schedule, here is what I am planning.  If you already know how to use your camera and want to join drop me a line…

Wednesday Late Afternoon: Tokyo Midtown and Roppongi Hills Sky Deck

Thursday:  Home with family celebrating Childrens Day

Friday evening: Kichijoji Harmonica Yokocho

Saturday evening:  Golden Gai

Sunday: TBD

こんしゅうのスケジュールです。いっしょにしゃしんをとりましょうか? メールください。。。

水曜日のゆうがた: Tokyo Midtown and Roppongi Hills Sky Deck

木曜日:いそがしい。。。

金曜日のよる:Kichijoji Harmonica Yokocho

土曜日のよる:Golden Gai

日曜日:いそがしい。。。

私の日本語をよんでくれてサンキュウベリイマッチです!

The one thing I love about Golden Week is I have lots of time to shoot.   I shot so much this is to be continued tomorrow…stay tuned!  ゴールデンウェークはたくさんじかんがあります。たくさんしゃしんをとります。 あしたね!

 

3 Comments

  1. Very nice pics and blog.
    Congrats

  2. For someone my age, I still enjoy a Pokemon game or two. Hehe.

    I love that picture of the little girl. Kids are fun to photograph.

  3. I, too, love the photo of the little girl. She is adorable.

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