Friday, August 02, 2013

"Hamamatsucho, July Mt. Takao, Hachioji Hanabi, Shinjuku, Etc."

In this batch of video views, in addition to here-and-there scenes out and about via the Tokyo train system, are a number of views of a visit to Mt. Takao (including going up and coming back on the cable car there) and a fireworks event in Hachioji.
Kunitachi Station 国立駅 ホームから改札口まで (130711)

Walking from one of the platforms at Kunitachi Station down to the ticket barrier area.  There's no specific indication in the video of how hot it was, but was quite a hot day!
Nihonbashi Twilight Stroll 日本橋夕暮れ散策散歩 (130717)

Megacity lights look best in the twilight....  I had just missed the walk light when I began taking this one, so the beginning is just looking around on a street corner while waiting for the light to change, but then the view is walking down, first, the main street, and then side streets (and a couple of foot-traffic-only alleys) all the way to Tokyo Station.

Shinjuku Chuo Line Evening Platform Walk 新宿駅中央線の様子 (130717)

It's interesting about the advertising on the side of some trains - advertising in public appears to be continuing to shrink, but I guess that since people actually look up from their micro-computer devices when a train comes alongside the platform, it's considered worth the cost.  The type of advertising that used to be all over the city, but is really in decline now are the big billboard ads on top of buildings.  More and more you see the skeletal framework of them with no advertising on them.

Shinjuku - Crossing Over to Nishi-Shinjuku 新宿 (130717)

In the beginning of this one, the "Extra!  Read all about it!" newspaper hand-outs are regarding Paul McCartney's upcoming concert tour in Japan.

Ochanomizu to Hamamatsucho 御茶ノ水駅-浜松町駅 (130718)

This actually begins a little past Ochanomizu Station, just before going past the grass-covered platform of the former Manseibashi Station, and the new... restaurant?/pub?/what? that they built into the back end of the platform.  On the back part of that is an open section, so I imagine it will be something like an enclosed restaurant/pub with an open-air section where you can sit out (when the weather is nice) and watch modern Chuo Line trains go by while pondering the history of the line's original terminal station, Manseibashi.

After that, I get off the Chuo Line in Kanda, and transfer to the Yamanote Line, which I take to Hamamatsucho.  It's sensible to modernize Kanda Station, but I feel a little bit nostalgic for the old version.  At the moment, it's still mainly a construction zone, although there's one new finished section that I walk through in this video.  (Incidentally, I had enough time, so I walked through both the new section, and also the older section on the way to the Yamanote Line platform.)  After that I look out the window on the way to Hamamatsucho.

Hamamatsucho Station - Waiting for Yamanote Line 浜松町駅 山手線 (130718)
Hamamatsucho to Yurakucho 浜松町駅-有楽町駅 夜の山手線 Yamanote (130718)

This shows some of the visual attraction of looking out the window of a night train traveling through the center of Tokyo - with the combination of reflections, dim views, moving lights, combinations of different colored lights, etc.

Yurakucho Station Construction Shed - Waiting for Yamanote Line (130718)

Having a look at the early stages of platform door construction-related storage space and listening to the "be careful" recordings (warning that the space on the platform is limited due to the storage area, so to watch your step, etc).  When the train comes, I take it to Tokyo Station.

Shinagawa to Yurakucho (Yamanote Line) 品川駅-有楽町駅 山手線 (130718)

I would have taken some video in Shinagawa, but I was shy on time after seeing a friend off at his hotel there and had the camera off until I got back to the station.  Looking at this again, I see that I messed up the door counting... I had just noticed the old marker for the former six-door cars (all moved to other lines now that all Yamanote Line cars are back to four doors), and thought I'd point that out....

Onitsuka Midori (鬼塚緑) Exhibition at Art Gallery Ishi (アートギャラリー石) 130717

At an art exhibition in Ginza (above and below).  The person dancing in the mysterious mask in the following video is the artist herself.

Onitsuka Midori (鬼塚緑) Performance at Art Gallery Ishi (アートギャラリー石) 130717

Ozashiki-485 Special Train in Shinjuku 華はな (130720)

One of the special Ozashiki trains, which appeared to be on a trip for families.  There were toy trains set up in one part of the train, which is something I don't think I've ever seen before.  I tried to imagine being a kid and wondered if I'd really want to play with a toy train while riding in a real train....

Saikyo Line Platform (Shinjuku) 新宿駅埼京線ホーム (130720)

Shinjuku to Ebisu (Saikyo Line) 新宿駅-恵比寿駅 埼京線 (130720)

Looking out the right side of a Saikyo Line train as it runs from Shinjuku to Ebisu.  This is an angle I've begun taking and given up on in some other videos due to the sun shining into the lens, but this was in the morning, so the sun was on the left side of the train for a change.  One of the thoughts that comes to me while watching this is "July Green".
Ebisu - Saikyo to Hibiya Transfer 恵比寿駅 埼京線-日比谷線 (130720)

Politician in Speaker Van Driving By in Kyobashi (130720)

Tokyo Station Yaesu Side - New Face Visible 東京駅新八重洲口の顔 (130720)

After a lot of construction, some of the scaffolding has come down and much of the new face of the Yaesu side of Tokyo Station is visible now.

Tokyo July Green Grass (130721)
Green grass and tall weeds might have been a better title for this, although the insect noises in the background and all that green do say "July" to me....

Pre-Construction Zone Area in Central Tokyo 工事前の段階 (130721)
A big healthy plant somehow growing in-between asphalt lots - in an area that is slated for construction in the near future, so I thought it would be good to record this moment in time before this space becomes part of the first floor of a large building.
Watching this now - I rather like it, but I suppose this is practically textbook "boring" for most people?  By content, it's just empty lots, a plant with very large leaves, and a new building under construction, with a soundtrack of a few birds making their morning noises.  But for me, it's a piece of Tokyo at a particular time, and a kind of "stop and notice your surroundings" (no roses to smell).

Quiet Area of Tokyo One Sunday in July (130721)

This area is busier on weekdays, and there's water flowing out of that empty box-like thing I take a look at in this video.

Shinjuku to Ebisu (Left Side) 新宿駅-恵比寿駅 埼京線 (左側) 130721

Hibiya Line Train Arriving at Ebisu Station 恵比寿駅の日比谷線 (130721)

Hibiya to Marunouchi Transfer at Kasumigaseki 日比谷線-丸の内線 (130721)

Underground Part of Shinjuku Station on West Side 新宿駅 西側 (130721)

新宿西側散策散歩 Street Scene West Side of Shinjuku Station (130721)

A seven minute video showing the walk by the west front of Shinjuku Station, and then down the Omoide-Yokocho izakaya street (fairly early in the day - before most of the places were open).  At the end of the video, I walk through the pedestrian tunnel that connects the east and west sides of the station.

Shinjuku Pedestrian Paradise (Quick View) 新宿歩行者天国 (130721)
Shinjuku Afternoon East Side Back Streets 新宿東側のお昼裏道 (130721)
July Weekend Afternoon in Shinjuku 新宿七月の日曜日の午後 (130721)

Mysterious Alley - One Hot Afternoon (130721)

Can't say I recommend going down this... I think once was enough for me (it didn't smell very nice for one thing), but I couldn't resist going for the contrast angle.  It's one of the reasons Tokyo is an interesting city.  You go to an area, and there are elements to it that are totally unexpected.  All the times I've been to Shinjuku, and I don't think I've ever noticed this alley before....

Seibu-Shinjuku Station Afternoon Platform Walk (Red Arrow NRA) 130721

Kiki 浜松町ライブ (黄緑) Set-1 Song-3 Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)
Kiki 浜松町ライブ (左目のポケット) Set-2 Song-4 Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)

Kiki 浜松町ライブ Set-3 Song-1 Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)

Above and below are several clips from a street concert (although actually within the property of a building that has an open corner) in Hamamatsucho.  Kiki is a nice, tight band, and their singer has a nice voice.  Apparently they're about to release their first CD (which I'm looking forward to).

Kiki 浜松町ライブ Set-3 Song-4 Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)

Kiki 浜松町ライブ Set-4 (Prelude) Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)
Kiki 浜松町ライブ (Jellyfish) Set-4 Song-3 Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)

Kiki 浜松町ライブ (Tonight) Set-4 Song-4 Kiki Live in Hamamatsucho (130718)

Boarding Tozai Line Train at Nihonbashi 東西線 日本橋 (130722)

Ochanomizu to Kanda 御茶ノ水駅-神田駅 工事中の神田駅 (130722)

This includes the transfer from the Chuo Line to the Yamanote Line at Kanda Station, and - at 2:33 and 2:38 - a quick look at an exposed-during-construction section of an old brick wall.

Kanda to Shinbashi Morning Rush 朝通勤ラッシュ 神田駅-新橋駅 (130722)

Just some scenes from the morning commute, but they convey somewhat the atmosphere in the morning.  Incidentally, this particular morning was kind of a tough commute.  Once I got to work, I needed about 30 minutes to... decompress?  In any case, it was a high-stress commute, as sometimes (or "often" maybe I should say) happens.

Hamamatsucho Station Morning Rush Platform Walk 浜松町駅 朝通勤 (130722)

Morning platform scene.  I suppose car commutes may watch this and be thankful they have all that personal space *within* the car, but there are a range of positive aspects to commuting by train, even when it's rather crowded.  First and foremost, I think, is that (most of the time), you waste less time getting across town and are better able to make tight schedules, since the amount of time it takes to get about by train is much more predictable than it is by car (when the trains run on time that is, as they usually do in Tokyo).  And once you get to your destination, there are no parking issues whatsoever - you step off the train - and you're there, free to move about without having to deal with parking hassles!  In that sense, within a megacity like Tokyo, there's actually more freedom of movement without a car than with one.

Hamamatsucho Sidewalk Stroll 浜松町朝散歩 (130722)

The morning walk away from the city center station... with lots of white shirts and very few jackets on a hot July day.

Toyama Shingo 遠山伸吾インスタレーション GG1C ギャラリー銀座一丁目 (130723)

A quick look (with the artist's permission) at an art installation/exhibition in Ginza.

Floor Pattern by Room-306 (130723)
This concrete floor has been in use for 79 years now, and the wear patterns where the non-slip colored surface have worn down to the base concrete below are fascinating if you look at them in detail.  This particular room (Room-306) used to be a beauty salon, and the way there are a serious of what almost look like holes in the surface coating, in contrast to wider patches in other parts of the building, makes me wonder if this wear pattern - unique to this one spot - came about through decades of women coming to this door in high heel shoes perhaps?  In Tokyo, where almost everything old is destroyed, this kind of thing takes on some kind of urgent meaning that's hard to explain... it's as though the very building is saying "Take a very good look, as what I can show you - if you look and listen carefully/hard enough - is almost extinct in Tokyo now..."

Yurakucho Rail Bridge Noises Etc 有楽町鉄道橋下の音 (130723)
More echoes of the past.  Concrete bridges probably make more sense to build now, but these old steel bridges make such cool noises when the heavy trains go by overhead.  (And I guess the rail term for the type of trains going by overhead is probably "light rail", but I mean "heavy" in that the trains are big, heavy, and long enough to make a lot of very cool noises as they go by.)

Abstract - Station Noises (Light and Shadow) 駅の音光と影 (130724)

I specifically recorded this one to get the sound of motors, echoes, announcements, trains, etc that I noticed in this station.  The pattern of light and shadow is incidental to the sound, and it might even be better to just listen to this one and not watch the visual part.

Proper recordings of sounds in various places is actually kind of a new thing.  The documentaries that people are used to seeing with sound generally have 100% fake sounds.  It's a shame, because a lot of the atmosphere of a place is in the sound, and putting generic mundane sounds onto documentary material degrades its value and programs people's minds with bad/inaccurate info.  I think it would be much better to leave silent (documentary) films silent than to dump in those horrible fake sounds.

Yurakucho to Tokyo (Yamanote Line) 有楽町駅-東京駅 夕方の山手線 (130723na)

Tokyo to Kanda (Chuo Line) 神田駅-御茶ノ水駅 中央線 (130723)

Shinjuku Station - Platform to Lower Concourse 新宿駅 ホームと下の通路 (130723)

Shinjuku Station East Entrances 新宿駅 中央東口と東口 (130723)

Shinjuku Night Stroll on East Side 新宿東側の夜散歩 (130723)

Shinjuku Night Walk (East to West) 新宿夜散歩 東から西へ (130723g)

Walking out of the east exit of Shinjuku Station, and then walking over wet streets to the pedestrian tunnel that connects the east and west sides of the station.
Once on the west side, I walk through the Omoide-Yokocho izakaya alley... it's hard to pass up doing that when in this area!  About twenty years ago, I thought of it as a time slip zone, but since it's become quite a tourist attraction, it seems a bit like a theme park in a way, but I still like it.  Still, with a river of tourists pouring through, the time-slip feeling has largely disappeared and now it seems very much in the present, even though there's the obvious overhang of style and form from the past?  Something like that.  On the other hand, my way of looking at it has also probably changed over the years, so maybe it seems as much of a time-slip area to tourists as I used to perceive it?

Shinjuku to Yotsuya (R) Chuo Line 新宿駅-四ッ谷駅 朝の中央線 (130724)

Chuo to Marunouchi Transfer at Yotsuya 四ッ谷駅で中央線-丸の内線の乗り換え (130724)

Shinjuku to Yotsuya (L) Chuo Line 新宿駅-四ッ谷駅 朝の中央線 (130725)

Yotsuya Station Morning Platform Walk 四ッ谷駅朝ホームの様子 (130725)

Yotsuya to Akasaka-Mitsuke (Marunouchi Line) 四ッ谷駅-赤坂見附 丸の内線 (130725)
Arriving at Kasumigaseki (Marunouchi Line) 霞ヶ関駅 丸の内線 (130725)

Marunouchi to Hibiya Transfer (Kasumigaseki) 霞ヶ関駅で丸の内線-日比谷線の乗り換え (130725)

Old Stone Lined Stairway in the Mountains 山の古い石階段 (130727)
In the Mountains - Green Green Everywhere Green 緑緑の七月の山 (130727)

Green Leaves Overhead - Old Mountain Path 緑と古い山道 (130727)

Old Houses in Central Tokyo 中央東京の古い家 (130725)

Tokyo is interesting in that you never know when you'll be in an ultra-modern area, and then suddenly come upon an island of old wooden houses from the past like this.  I've always enjoyed stumbling onto old houses like this.  The old custom of putting potted plants around the wooden houses provides a welcome (and sudden) change in atmosphere.

Hibiya to Marunouchi Transfer at Kasumigaseki 霞ヶ関駅で日比谷線-丸の内線 (130725)

Kasumigaseki Station Maze 霞ヶ関駅の一部 (130725)

Waiting for Marunouchi Line Train at Kasumigaseki Station 霞ヶ関駅 (130725)

Quick 360 in Shinjuku (Bicycles Etc) 新宿の一見 (130725)

Inside Nearly Empty Train 三ドア車両の中 (130725)
Visitors try pretty hard to find the most crowded trains they can to take videos of to delight their friends overseas, but (depending on the line and time of day of course), there are also rides like this where you have nearly an entire train carriage to yourself.  More often than not, it's crowded of course, but not always.

Takao Cable Car - Midday July Trip Up Mountain 高尾ケーブルカー昼上り旅 (130727)
美しい七月山緑 Beautiful Green Forest in the Mountains (130727)
夕方蟲の七月歌 Evening Insect Noises and Passing Bipedal Mountain Goers (130727)
Full Cable Car Descending Mt Takao 高尾ケーブルカー 山から降りる (130727)

Takaosanguchi to Takao 高尾山口駅-高尾駅 京王線 (130727)

Keio to JR Transfer at Takao 高尾駅で京王線-JR線乗り換え (130727)

高尾駅-西八王子駅 中央線 Takao to Nishi-Hachioji (Chuo Line) 130727

Fireworks in the Rain While Walking Down Street in Hachioji 八王子 (130727)

Watching Fireworks from a Wet Street in Hachioji (130727)

Nishi-Hachioji Station at Night (Fireworks Night) 西八王子駅 花火の夜 (130727)

Watching Fireworks from Under an Umbrella (130727)

花火対雷 八王子 Fireworks vs Lightning - Hachioji Fireworks Event (130727)

Walking Towards Fireworks Event in Hachioji (130727)
Approaching Venue for Hachioji Fireworks Display (130727)

Early Part of Fire Walking Event in Hachioji (130727)

Fire Walking Event in Hachioji 八王子火の上に歩く (130727)

Twilight Announcements at Hachioji Fireworks Event (130727)
Waiting for Hachioji Fireworks to Begin (Stadium Views) 130727

Early Twilight at Hachioji Fireworks Event (130727)

八王子花火 Hachioji Fireworks (Sparks と Wind と Fireworks) 130727

Fireworks in Front of Dramatic Twilight Clouds (130727)
花火と夕暮れの雨雲 八王子 Fireworks and Dark Clouds (Hachioji) 130727
Lyle (Hiroshi) Saxon

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