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putting the sabi back in wabi sabi.

November 11, 2010

It’s Thursday. And it may be Rememberance Day wherever you are, but here, nothing ended on November 11th, and no one has the day off. So off to school I went, as I do on Thursdays. I take the Odakyu line, part of the Odakyu department store and rail company, way out to the suburbs.

Out of curiosity I pumped it into Google Translate, just to see if that was how they ended up with that wording. While it shares a certain funk-ness, (I hesitate to say funkiness) with “Please in Odakyu department store shopping,” I think the “As for the” is a particular human kind of translation. Too bad, I had hoped to stock this one up to new technologies. Fear not, Jinglish and its never-ending powers of amusement is not, as some think, on its way to extinction. By the way, Yahoo’s Babel Fish came up with “Shopping please at the Odakyu department store” which I think actually conveys meaning quite well.

It was another beautiful day.

Here is ONE of the bike parking lots at the other end, way out in the burbs. That’s a lot of bikes.

The persimmon trees were really showing off their stuff today. They share something with the cherry blossoms aesthetically for me, as they are both full of colour when there are no leaves, so the colour is even more striking. There were fields and fields of them, but it seemed like a lot of them had been left to rot.

There is this suburban decay kind of thing going on out here. It’s odd, because on the one hand, the city is sprawling ever further in this direction, and Starbucks and other big name markers of “urbanity” have popped out up here among the large condominium complexes and dense single family housing developments, and on the other, there is a kind of abandoned ghost town feel going on too, with its own haunting presence.

The rusting (sabi) charm of this little shop.

I am so glad I don’t live up this hill.

There are several signs like this around the area. It’s a very subdued aesthetic for signage, don’t you think?

Do you like “Pepci”? How about Montblanc (chestnut dessert) flavoured “Pepci”? I can’t stand either. Please tell coke not to follow suite with Creme Brule Coke or something. If Pep”c”i and Coke get into a revolting dessert war, we are all out to lose… at least our appetites. Maybe Orange Crush can jump in with a boston creme donut orange drink…. Bleh. bleh.

Seriously though. How does someone holding a bottle of something and making a sign for it get TWO of the THREE words wrong? Pepci Monc Blanc? Maybe it’s like–is it absinthe I’m thinking of?–and makes you go blind if you drink it.

It really was a beautiful day out, and the trees out of the city are well ahead of downtown on the leaf-turning thing. I guess all that urban heat really makes a difference.

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