85yo Kin-chan has been shining shoes at the Imperial Hotel Tokyo for over 50 years. He first started out in his trade polishing GI boots after the war in Fukuoka as an 18yo. He forgets how many pairs he’s polished but noticed my 18 year old pair of RM Williams, the boots almost every Aussie has. He says the quality of the leather is superior to pretty much every other shoe brand out there which is a pretty decent endorsement. No plans to retire. Talk about dedication to a job.
Nagatoro in Saitama Prefecture. During Autumn, the rapids make for a tranquil setting. You can ride a boat down stream and catch a bus back to the starting point. Located at the far end of Saitama, a car is most convenient but public transport connects it all. Other sights ainclude the Hodoya Shrine and the Funadama festival, dedicated to the God of Water as a prayer for the safety of boatmen on water going downstream the Arakawa river is held on August 15th. Nagatoro is doable in a day but worth setting off from Tokyo early to get the best out of a day.
Otaguro Park in Nishi Ogikubo. Go!! It is the former residence of Motoh Otaguro, a music critic, whose dying wish was his house (and grounds) would be open to the public. While I hope I am some way off leaving this world, it is an amazingly beautiful and tranquil place to visit and may I be in a position where I could give something back to the community which all could enjoy. The evening lights will only be available til December 3rd. It is honestly worth it. I am too much of a Phillistine to list all of the different types of trees inside the gardens but you won’t regret it.