The New Year
I love the turn of the year. It's a great moment to pause and take stock of what's working well and what needs adjustment. Last year I wrote a post called Staying Balanced and think it's a good time of year to bring up this conversation again. I had a good conversation with my friend John about the post. We are all busy and sometimes one of these projects needs to take a much bigger priority. His advice was staying balanced is really difficult and probably shouldn't actually be the goal. The more important point is returning to balance if things need to shift for the short term. This is really good advice.
Throughout the year it's easy to come out of balance and the beginning of the year is a great time to assess what 'balanced' looks like for all that is going on in your life. During January each year, I look at my investments and on-going projects such as Grown Man Shave, ShootTokyo, learning guitar and my never-ending pursuit of Japanese learning to make sure I'm 'balanced' and making the progress I want against each of these. It's always a good exercise and yields some adjustments that produce better results for the year ahead.
I've continued to really enjoy shooting with my new Leica M10. This is a purchase I'm continuing to be very happy with. It has me shooting a lot more than recent days so that makes me happy.
I've also been busy on my Instagram so if you don't already follow me there please check it out. About 95% of the photos there are different than ones you find here. They are all shot on my mobile phone as well. Last week I captured the snowstorm that hit Tokyo. Tokyo doesn't get much snow so it's a big deal when it happens and the city goes into a mild panic.
Today's configuration: Leica M10 with a Summilux 35mm F/1.4 and occasionally a Summicron 28mm f/2.0.
My local Yakitori maker Suzuki-san and I are becoming good friends. I pass his shop on the way to and front the train station. If I'm on the other side of the road he calls me over for small talk and asks me if I want to take his photo. Lately, he has been giving me tsukune, or chicken meatballs, when I come over. What a good deal! Someone who wants me to take their photo and to give me free tsukune. I'm in!
He was in ShootTokyo: The Book so I gave him a copy of the book but I think I'll print one of these images off for him and frame it and give it to him as a gift.
I continued to be amazed by the fine details this camera is able to pick up.
I recently found the Starbucks Japan Headquarters. Attached to this Starbucks is the Japan Corporate offices of Starbucks. The Starbucks Coffee Shop is one of the Starbucks Reserve Shops. I don't think they have them outside of Japan. It's a bit more premium. I think it is also a training shop of sorts for them as everyone behind the counter is a Coffee Master.
PS - If you work for Starbucks you should consider sponsoring this blog given how much I mention you here. Unlimited drinks would be acceptable payment.
It has a nice quiet seating area that is great for reading, studying or just taking a break.
So Tired. One of my favorite places to grab Mabodofu when I worked in Marunochi. Sadly they didn't have it for lunch the day I was there.
Meet Alain. We work in similar circles in business and he was visiting Tokyo on business. He reached out to me on LinkedIn to see if I wanted to meet up for lunch. It always great to make a new business connection.
He has been my accountant in Tokyo for the last 12 years or so. He is fantastic and very easy to work with. Tax in Japan and between Japan and US can be very complicated so it's always faster and easier to get someone to help you. You can you find out his company here. I like working with him as he is a super simple and straight-forward guy. He is usually very casually dressed I almost didn't recognize him. I think this is the first time I have ever seen him in a suit.
We haven't caught up socially for a long time so we decided to grab some sushi. He invited to this great little out of the way place that he loves. It was so out of the way we were the only two people there on a Friday night.
We basically had a private sushi chef for the evening. The sushi, and sake, was amazing.
Thanks for stopping by today.