We’ve just finished celebrating Silver Week and I have to say, mine was a tad disappointing.
For a travel professional, that is. Even just for an avid traveller. Yes, sad to say, due to a variety of circumstances, I spent all of Silver Week at home.
Thankfully, home has recently become the eternally-intriguing city of Tokyo so it wasn’t as if I had a shortage of things to do. And with the run of gorgeous weather after so much rain, I took the time to revisit some sites I haven’t been to in years.
Which is how I ended up in the beautiful Kyu Shiba Rikyu garden, literally a stone’s throw from JR Hamamatsucho station where some of the city’s most-used train lines run. The garden was created in the late 1650s as part of the villa of a Tokugawa official. It was given to the city after the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 and after a bit of restoration, was opened to the public in 1924.
I used to live a five minute walk up the train track from this garden and I loved to visit it, both for its beauty and the fact that – despite its rather accessible location – hardly anyone seems to visit. But it wasn’t until this particular wander through the garden that I noticed something about this shot below:
Two structures, standing tall. One old and calling our memories to a distant past, one new, a gleaming sign of the future. Standing not quite side by side but inhabiting the same frame. It sums up how I feel about Tokyo most days. Yes, this is one of the most modern and advanced cities in the world, yet it offers up tiny pockets of traditionalism that hearken back to another age.