Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Chigasaki, Japan (11/29-30/2011)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Kent had business in Japan and Tamiko accompanied him on this trip.
We arrived at Tokyo's Narita Airport.
No smoking allowed outdoors, so smokers have smoking "rooms:"
Took a bus that dropped us off at a hotel in the Roppongi area:
Oh, yeah, they drive on the left side of the road here!
Kent's colleague met us and we went to the BASF offices. After a meeting, the colleague accompanied us to the city of Chigasaki, by Metro then Japan Rail (JR). We had dinner, then checked into the hotel:
An odd-shaped room, but we had an air humidifier and yakatas/cotton robes.
Also a pants press:

Wednesday, November 30, 2011
View from the hotel room:
The Sunlife Garden Hotel complex includes a chapel used for weddings and other events. The church was moved here from Scotland, and has been used in TV dramas.
Hotel courtyard:
Hotel entrance:
Kent had meetings/training presentations and a business dinner in Chigasaki that day.
Tamiko took a walk heading towards the beach.
A Harley Davidson dealership:
An interesting cable suspension bridge on the Shin-Shonan Bypass Highway:
A cemetery:
My understanding is that with Japanese cemeteries, each family has a plot with a small monument. When someone dies, they are cremated, as there is not enough land in Japan for burials. The ashes may be buried under the monument. However, a wooden marker is made with the person's date and place of birth, date and place of death, and his name with honorifics added. You can see the ski-sized wooden markers standing in the family plots. The markers eventually decay and leave room for following generations of markers.
Reached the beach:
There are surfers in the center wave.
I knew I was going in the right direction when I was passed by wetsuit-clad surfers on bicycles with a board in brackets hanging on the bike:
Chigasaki is a seaside resort community and the birthplace of Japanese surfing.
Not as good as Kristen's surfing photos!
The Southern "C" sculpture:
A section of the shore is called Southern Beach, inspired by the pop music group, the Southern All Stars whose lead vocalist Keisuke Kuwata hails from Chigasaki.
A symbol of Southern Beach is Eboshi-iwa, a large hat-shaped rock:
A torii:
The Goddess store claims to be the first surfboard shop in Japan:
The shape of Eboshi-iwa is seen everywhere:
The Sebastian Inlet Surf Shop:
Aloe arborescens:
On the walk back to the hotel, passed a beach rental?
Cherry blossoms out of season?
Trimmed hedges and futons airing on the balcony:
Stopped for lunch at the 24-hour McDonalds:
Peeked through gates at landscaped driveways:
Camellia hedge:
Sidewalk shrine:
Private home:
Took the free shuttle from the hotel to the JR station and made my way back to Roppongi in Tokyo.
Continued in the next blog (Tokyo).

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Duolun Road (11/26/2011)

Saturday, November 26, 2011
Today was a bit different - we had company on our exploration. Better than that, we had a "local" guide! But first a stop at the ATM with Kent and his work colleagues Jim and Ray:
Liyang Road was the one with the tree light decorations like those on Huaihai Road:
Liyang Road was in the American Concession (established in 1848) that later became part of the International Concession (1863). The homes here are "American-style:"
The houses are now subdivided:
Do you think those posts once held clothes lines? But you'd have to walk downstairs and go outside to hang your clothes!
This next picture is meant to be a look at two grandfathers watching the baby:
While grandma hangs out the wash:
These houses were built in 1914:
Lilong/neighborhood lanes are common in this area:
An apartment house on Changchun Road:
You ask, don't they have electric or gas clothes dryers? Sometimes they do, but you save money and the environment by hanging clothes to air dry, and the Chinese supposedly believe the clothes should be kissed by the sun (so that they will be naturally fresh).
A block called Saxon Apartments:
Someone must be moving:
Lu Xun, a Chinese writer, visited his Japanese friend Uchiyama in this building:
The Japanese began moving into the area in the 1930s, making it the Japanese Concession. The area was less policed and thus a hotbed of leftist activity.
The South Gate to Duolun Road:
The Duolun Museum of Modern Art entrance:
Duolun Road is a "Shanghai Culture Street," which opened in 1998 as a pedestrian street. The road was built in 1911 and was originally named Darroch Road, after a British missionary.
Tamiko engages in revolutionary thinking with Lu Xun (1881-1936) and others:
Except for this first sculpture group, the labels for the other sculptures have disappeared.
Do not steal this chair!
Hongde Tang/Great Virtue Christian Church:
Built in 1928 with Western and Chinese features.
Kent greets Uchiyama, friend of Lu Xun, and owner of a bookstore:
Interesting architecture:
Is this Kong Xiangxi?
This lady seems confortable with this writer (Rou Shi?):
Xi Shi Zhonglou/Bell Tower:
Darroch's bust in the tower:
I can identify this writer - Ding Ling (1904-1986):
Old Film Cafe:
Located in the Winifer Villa, with a Sculpture of Charlie Chaplin:
Old Film Cafe's mosaic tile floor:
Old Film Cafe interior:
Old movie projector:
Coffee and tea break at the Old Film Cafe:
Pu'er tea in a glass pot:
Pu'er is a large leaf variety of tea from Yunnan.
Flowers in the tea:
An antique bookstore:
An antique store:
Can anyone identify this piece of furniture?
Perhaps French and from the 1930s.
An ESSO Mei Foo kerosene lamp:
Made in the USA, these lamps were given or sold cheaply to Chinese peasants to encourage them to use kerosene instead of vegetable oil for illumination.
Former residence of Bai Chongxi (general of the Republic of China):
Site of the 4th National Congress of the CPC:
Held January 11-22, 1925.
The Five Martyrs:
Rou Shi is in front, the others are Hu Yepin, Feng Keng, Li Weisen and Yin Fu.
Koala Garden House and Eucalyptus Cafe:
A youth hostel and cafe in a former private club.
Former residence of Kong Xiangxi:
Built in 1924 in Islamic style. Kong (also known as H. H. Kung) was once the richest man in China who built the Bank of China building on The Bund.
The North Gate to Duolun Road:
A newsboy delivers a paper to a leftist writer:
Although we were done with Duolun Road, we still had more to see.
Site of the former Japanese Marine barracks:
Former Lamorse Residence:
Lu Xun once lived here.
Site of the former Uchiyama Bookstore:
Sugar cane juice press:
On a lane off of Dongbaoxing Road, there were a couple more sights.
Former Japanese "comfort house:"
Big long gourd:
Ginger root:
Chinese Martial Arts or Kung Fu Museum:
Martial Arts School popularized by Bruce Lee in the movie "Fists of Fury:"
A bust of Bruce Lee's instructor:
Chicken head:
Squirrel-shaped fish:
North Sichuan Road Park:
A permanent arch for the Shanghai Wine & Spirits Festival:
Sidewalk butcher:
A rare clock shop:
CITIC building:
North Jiangxi Road (a shopping street):
From here we went to the Qipu (pronounced "cheapoo!") market to buy sunglasses. After that we went our separate ways.
Thanks, Ray, for being such a great guide!