Watashi wa nihongo ga hanasemasen
I don’t speak Japanese
The momentum of 4 travelers is a lot to condone with. An entire unknown continent spans before us and we must choose what parts to traverse, propelling our warying legs ever forward. Jet-lag, worn off adrenaline and physical strength battle against the desire to see ever more ever more. Every breeze seems artisanal. Every meal looks like art. Every stranger stranger than home. Shoes and hats unexpected bookend Japanese city folk moving from destination to destination in subway bustle. Buildings seem somewhat rundown but also intentional and quaint. The downtown skyscrapers twirl upward or bend or exhale in architectural wonders. Monorails jettison over head. Skinny square box size cars wobble past on the left side of the road. I see meat on skewers, eggs like birthday cake candles atop rice and noodle dishes. There’s ramen. Tiny octopus. Quail eggs. Milk tea. And all full of soothing flavor. A business woman bows to her colleagues profusely. Hrajuko girls click by in platform heels, doll dresses and fringed umbrellas. The traditionally dressed walk swiftly with the rest, yukata kimonos breezing by. Men with short shorts, road run muscle legs and pointy hats carry rickashaws through the tourist areas. Flashing lights, enormous ads, moving doors and street crowds create a sea of intense stimulation-the pulse of a land alive, moving, leaning forward.