Despite their constant and uncomfortable reminders, I’ve always found graveyards to be strangely relaxing places; in many ways the perfect spot for a quiet and contemplative wander on a weekend afternoon.
Pet cemeteries, on the other hand, have somehow always felt very different. Invariably quite disturbing if the truth be told. Although why exactly I don’t know.
This particular place in Tokyo’s western suburbs, however, is an unusual mixture of the two. It’s without a doubt extremely poignant, with silence and the smell of incense pervading every little corner.
But at the same time, its narrow, confusing and quite claustrophobic corridors — inside what seems to be some kind of octagonal-like structure — create an unusual and slightly uncomfortable environment to say the least.
All the more so as practically each and every little cubby-hole is filled with an urn and mementoes of all kinds.
Yet the very obvious joy that these animals once brought to their owners.
And which are now clearly very much missed.
Combine to make it like no other pet cemetery I’ve ever been to before.