This lovely old lady’s journey has been a long one — 90 years long to be exact. A journey whose path may well be narrowing, with regular sit downs now essential, but one that nonetheless most definitely goes on.
Photographs from a small group of islands
Love the smile on the old lady’s face. How wonderful to see a 90-year-old looking happy and also able to still be out and about. Gather you had a friendly chat with her before taking the photo — and it looks like she enjoyed that interaction. 🙂
It’s a great smile, isn’t it?
She was walking ahead of me when she sat down for a rest. So I took the opportunity to get a photo and have a quick chat. And yes, she did seem to enjoy the interaction. Hope so anyway, as I certainly did.
Dan Waldhoff says
Charming. Our neighborhood is chock-a-block with happy faces that have at least 20 years on me (I’m 68) and they are always quick with a smile and conversation when we meet.
Charming is the perfect way to describe her.
Same in my building. A good few old people either living alone or with their family. And similarly all of them are quick to produce a big smile.
She’s so cute. You captured a great moment!
Thanks. It was definitely nice just to be there and take the photo.
Fab photo with great details. Full of warmth and humanity!
Thanks a lot!
The warmth and humanity was in plentiful supply, so very glad to to hear some of it comes through in the photo.
Matt Talbot says
I wonder what she’s going to be when she grows up?
I don’t think she’s decided yet. But after seeing this report (http://goo.gl/J7OhHT), a swimmer perhaps? Still plenty of time.
Great photo and I love the way you so willing engage elderly Japanese, who are usually more willing to speak with hairy, butta-kusai gaijin than the younger members of society.
One glove, hmmmm. Either a former hit woman or Michael Jackson fan.
Cheers, Jeffrey. Yeah, they often are. Generally much more ready with a smile too. No idea why that should be, but I’m glad they are ‘cos they are always great people to talk to.
I’m really hoping it was a hit woman!
I’ve just returned from my first two weeks in Tokyo and one thing I did was to ride the Arakawa tram to Minowabashi and walk along the oddly named Joyful Shopping Street, some 400m of little local stores displaying everything from home pickled veg to buckets of little fish. Both on the trams and on the street I saw many old ladies like the one in your photo, and whilst some were busy with their business most who looked up (they were invariably half my height and bent over) had a bright smile for the only westerner around. That trip certainly made an interesting change from the salaryman fields and youth oriented environs my other wanderings took me to.
And just as an aside, during my stay, whilst I took many many photographs (especially as I luckily hit the cherry blossom at it’s best) I also stopped to take photographs of interseting side alleys, pylonmazes, rusting stair cases and ancient bars which I only saw, and thought to investingate , because I’d been following your blog for a few years. So thank you for the blog and the inspiration.
My pleasure. And thank you for mentioning it. Great to hear you were not only inspired, but enjoyed seeing a different side of Tokyo. Very nice to be a small part of that.
Minowa is a wonderful little place, isn’t it? Was there just recently myself actually. Had a walk with a friend who had never been there before. And we took the tram in reverse to you, heading back towards Waseda. Like being in another city when compared to the likes of Shibuya and Harajuku, isn’t it? Or another world even.
On the return tram journey the trams were full of school kids – an entirely different swatch of life to share a carriage with.
Another world again was the subterranean tunnel system under Shinjuku. I could walk from the hotel basement through the tunnels through the spaceous, spotless, labyrinth to the Maranouchi line, Oedo line and Shinjuku station itself in just a few minutes despite the latter being over a kilometer away. And Shinjuku station, wow, I could have spent my entire two week stay just exploring that. Which sounds rather sad – but in my defense I had just finished Gibson’s Bridge trilogy which features it in several places. 3.5 million people a day pass through it I read somewhere. It was a strange feeling being one of them for a while.
Yeah, Shinjuku station is something else. Staggering how they manage to run it efficiently with so many people passing through.
There’s a really interesting documentary about it on YouTube. Detailing the planning, logistics etc. called The World’s Busiest train Station. Or at least something like that. Well worth a watch. Certainly gave me a different view of a station I use regularly.