I suppose I should explain myself. I’m not sure how much detail I’ll extemporate but suffice to say that I was burned out on writing as everything I wrote had identical tone and theme. Furthermore I fell into, what we in the ski-bum business referred to as, a shame spiral.
Basically I wasn’t prepared for what I saw in India. I do not to speak ill of the country or it’s people in any way and I doubt any one would defend the literal rivers of shit pouring into the sacred Ganga, or the litter density of the north. By the way, to those of you more conservative readers who think things like the EPA and the Clean Water Act (signed into law by a republican president ) are needless regulations that hamper business, I kindly invite you to go to Haridwar and enjoy the “freedom” of open sewars. Seeing all that after two months being on the road I just kind of needed a change. I was also really tired of being a slave to a schedule that had been conceived months before and no longer represented what I was actually interested in at the time. So I said f*$% it and went back to Japan.
It had been almost 16 years since I had been there and one of my fondest memories was the beef bowls of Yoshinoya. Back when I was 19, ill and lost in Osaka, that orange sign always signaled relief. To my delight, there was a Yoshinoya in the Haneda airport just down the way from the capsule hotel I was staying in. When my beef bowl arrived the years of my adulthood flashed before me and I could not stop the tears from pouring.
I happened to pick up a copy of the Wind Up Bird Chronicle in the Rishkesh airport and since I was in Tokyo with a Murykami book, I figured the most Murykami thing I could do (besides slipping into another dimension of course) was to hang out in Bar Lupin Ginza.
Sipping Suntory and Kirin at the old hangout of the Tokyo intellectual elite felt sort of bucket listish. The old barkeep seemed impressed that I was reading Murykami and that made the difficulty in finding the place and the somewhat steep cover charge all the more worth it. If you find yourself in Ginza do yourself a favor and pop in.
Tokyo is such a clean city and Japan has an inspiring elegance to its culture. I found some of the relief I sought there. I also found awesome cellar seafood joints where the freshest of tuna was had.
One of my favorite things about Japan is the marketing campaigns they come up with. For example; did you know that Tommy Lee Jones is a boss?
How about this; did you know that Takeshi Kitano, star of Takeshi’s Castle (MXC in the US ) and Battle Royale (the book/film that Hunger Games totally ripped off) wants to sell you golf clubs?
Anyway, Japan is awesome. I have been in the cities and the rural areas and it’s just the bee’s knees. Go there.
I made a pit stop in the states to get equipped for Patagonia which is where I am now (El Calafate to be precise). Until today I was in Chile which is a pretty radical country. I’m going to do a big Chile photo dump next but in the meantime, since I’ve seen it for the first time, I’ll leave you with a song and maybe a thirst for more 🙂