Returning to Tokyo means first returning to Edinburgh, to the grey sandstone blocks west of Princes Street that house stockbrockers and architects and the Consulate General of Japan. Arriving on the bus at half past eight, and with an hour to kill before I could hand in my visa application, I headed down the Royal Mile to Holyrood and took the steep path up Salisbury Crags, passing Americans wearing baseball caps and lycra shorts and a woman running her dog downhill.
I was inside the Consulate for no more than five minutes. A security guard sat by the door reading the sports pages from the Daily Record and there were mugshots of Japanese Red Army members on a poster next to the counter. "Your passport will be back by Friday, maybe earlier," said the woman on the other side of the glass. The sun shone through the window on the bus ride home. By the time we reached the border, I'd long since fallen asleep.