Saturday, December 06, 2008

Shinjuku Gyoen

I was up early enough to have the taste of last night's beer in my mouth as I boarded the train for Shinjuku Gyoen. A five-minute walk from the planet's busiest railway station, it was here I used to come to escape the worst of the summer heat. Here too, four years ago, spread across the grass with an illicit can of beer and the Daily Yomiuri, where I made up my mind to come back to Japan.

The park's at its best in autumn: bare trees in a tangle of knots, white daffodils by the glasshouse, red leaves fluttering to the ground like discarded bus tickets, picnic mats and rice balls, twisted maple trees reflected in the water, a couple walking arm-in-arm in matching koala face earmuffs. I found a sunny spot, lay down on the grass, and breathed.

1 comment:

Tara said...

I'm a fan of your short and poetic posts on daily life in Japan. It would be marvelous if you could contact me at as I am looking for contributors for my new web magazine.

(Btw, I'm a former expat myself- I lived in Beijing.)