Life has kept me very busy lately without much personal time. I have had a few business trips to start my year. I had a trip to London in January and a short trip to Singapore in February. Unfortunately both trips had very packed schedules that didn't leave me a chance to get out and shoot. In London I had awful jet lag which left me like a zombie by the time I was free. I only have Instagram to prove I was there.
I'm off to Mumbai in the morning for a week. I am really looking forward to 10 hours and 20 minutes of uninterrupted work time on the flight. I hoping to land in Mumbai with the bulk of my work behind me and ready for a productive week.
I've been trying more focus work sprints lately and it's going pretty well. I focus for a few hours; shut off social media, don't respond to emails, pings and just work on something. It's amazing how much you can get done when you completely focus on something without interruptions.
One thing I did differently this year was plan my travel for the entire year in advance. I'm not sure if I will be able to stick to it 100% but it's a little more sane than the past few years. It also gives me a roadmap I can look forward to and plan around. If you travel a lot I highly recommend this approach.
I have trips to Singapore, Seoul and Osaka in April. I'm going to try to make sure I leave a little time in my schedule to get out and shoot. I never have much time but I can make a little bit of time. I just need to force it into my schedule. I haven't been able to do that lately and it is something I want to get back to.
I'm excited to go to Osaka. I haven't been there in 10 years. I can't wait to explore another part of Japan. It will be nice to take the Shinkansen ride down there. I enjoy watching Japan country side pass by at 320 kilometers an hour.
Today's Configuration: Leica MP with a Summilux 35mm f/1.4 on Portra 160 film
I was sad to see my local 7-Eleven closed. The one thing I really love about Japan is routine. I'm the type of person that doesn't mind eating the same meal every day for a week. I love that when you go into a shop you know exactly what to expect. I can plan out what I want to buy before I even get to the store. I know they will have the exact sandwiches and the exact vegetable sticks with miso dip I want. I don't get surprised or disappointed. It's a very predictable experience. Perhaps that removes some of the excitement of exploring new things but it also brings a comfort and routine to the process. I think this is one thing that takes people a while to get about Japan.
Thankfully this being Tokyo I only had to walk a couple of blocks to find the new 7-Eleven that popped up to take it's place. Even the staff are the same. They just moved to the new store. It is stocked with all of my favorite items all located in more or less the same spot as the previous store. No surprises. I know what I will get.
The latest count has 19,244 7-Eleven Stores in Japan. To put that number into context there are 8,563 7-Eleven Stores in the United States. Japan is roughly the size of California but since there are lots of mountains the population is concentrated on about 27% of the land. That makes for a lot of 7-Elevens in a small space.
I think my local clinic gets their design inspiration from Miami Vice...
I always love reading this gym's sign as I pass. It is starting to motivate me to want to start boxing. I wish I had time in my life for exercise. The sign has reasonable english for Japan. It's odd that they are advertising in English as there aren't many foreigners in my town. Maybe they read ShootTokyo as I have mentioned them a few times in the past.
I'm still fascinated with this bar near my house. One day I'll stop in and have a drink. It was a Daihatsu Delivery Truck repair shop that they converted into a bar. It's decorations are a random mix of things. The entire place is very random. It is never crowded. This business just doesn't make sense to me. That makes it interesting.
They have been slowly tearing down the building around my local Yakitori Shop. I don't know if he realized how in danger his building is. Sadly he will be getting pushed out soon.
I hope Starbucks converts more of their stores to Coffee and Neighborhood themed shops. I really like this but I do think they need a few more food selections. In keeping it pretentious they lack selection so while I go there for coffee but I don't for food. I hope this changes.
...it looks like they will have some competition soon which is good as we need more good coffee shops in Jiyugaoka.
Spring has come to Tokyo...kind of.
Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you have a productive week ahead.