RETRO IN JAPAN
|Fire hydrant, Hakodate|
|Rustic in Sapporo|
|Retro gift shops - Mt Uzu (Toyako)|
|Retro skyline, Hirosaki|
|Doorman and taxi, Hakodate|
|Hirosaki street scene|
|Cafe sign, Hiraizumi|
|Hardware shop, Yamagata|
|Retro in Tokyo (Nakameguro)|
|Retro in Tokyo 2 (Nakameguro)|
OTT IN JAPAN
|OTT signage, Sapporo|
As a respite from madding Tokyo crowds, I hie to laid-back, hipster Shimokitazawa to check out the vintage clothes shops and … yes, more madding crowds following the whiff of a trend. The shops are all selling the same vintage Americana, and hipsters are outnumbered by sightseers. Even bohemian vintage is pursued with an obsessiveness that becomes conformity.
A tourism lady conducting a survey among departing passengers at Narita Airport: what activities did we do? (choice of around 30, list in order of preference), how much did you spend? (in each of about 12 categories), where did we go? where did we shop? where did we stay? … OTT. The poor woman.
And don’t get me started on the OTT ‘kawaii’ (cuteness)! And the gift shopping! And the packaging!
* Yes, it's true about Japanese toilets. While traditional squat toilets are still around, more common are new-fangled western-style, with an amazing array of functions. I am too intimidated to press any but the flush button (and some flush automatically when you stand). But sometimes just sitting down is the signal for music, or the sound of a rushing waterfall, to begin playing :)
|Kawaii tram driver, Hakodate|
|Kawaii post box, Hakodate|
|Retro AND kawaii - 'face-in-hole' photo boards (kaohame) are everywhere!|
|OTT packaging for OTT gift shopping|
|OTT crowds in Harajuku (Tokyo)|