Today is a public holiday os Japan, another one. This one is for the Emperor's birthday. He stands on the balcony of the Imperial Palace and waves to the public. There's much fuss in the news that this will be his second last official birthday wave since his abdication is planned for April 2019. His will be the first abdication in a couple of centuries. Anyway, that the long way around to saying I was a bit surprised to find my new clarinet group rehearsing on a public holiday...
Yes, I'm finally getting around to reviving previous hobbies. You will recall, dear reader, a few weeks ago I headed to the other side of town to inspect a new clarinet (if you've forgotten the post, you'll recall the photo of the three large dogs sculptures hanging over the balcony). So that spurred me on to find a clarinet group and that search ended with me at a rehearsal room today with five or six others in a small clarinet choir. And what fun it was. Sure, there's a whole new language to learn (for example, in Japanese they use do-re-mi- rather than C-B-A- for the scales) and I was a little nervous and out of practice since stepping down from my Brisbane bands two years (yes, really, TWO YEARS already!!) ago, and I was on the baby clarinet rather than my preferred bass but...all things these things aside, it was a wonderful thing to be back in the music environment.
Then it was off to the local shops for a few last minute things to take home this week, just enough time to catch a glimpse of the lights around Ikebukuro station...
|Oh, Christmas Tree...|
|Illumination among the neon|
Yes, our familiar hardworking owls, this time dressed up to appear Christmassy. Just a little detour on the way to Christmas. (NB: all these lights and Christmas trimmings come down on the stroke of midnight to end Christmas Eve, time to prepare the New Years decorations then.) Christmas Day is just another day....
[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 5.45pm-5.46pm; 23 December 2017]