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Saturday, January 02, 2016

This was how I ended 2015 and welcome the arrival of 2016

Just a simple walk from Shinjuku to Yoyogi, through Meiji Shrine, and finally to Shibuya.

I was thinking of doing my countdown either at Meiji Shrine, or at Shibuya Crossing. But having done my countdowns in some of the great shrines and temples the past few years (went to visit the Big Buddha at Nara's Todaiji in 2008, watched the release of thousands of balloons into the air at Zojo-ji in 2011, checked out the food stalls of Senso-ji in 2012) I opted for the latter.

It was a slightly different experience...

Couple of guys just climbed onto the McDonalds sign and the second floor of the shops beside. Chaotic. Insane.Goodbye 2015. I hope for a better 2016. Happy new year everyone.
Posted by Edmund Yeo on Thursday, December 31, 2015

After the countdown, as more people started congregating around Shinjuku Crossing, I walked hurriedly towards NHK, knowing that they have just finished the recording of this year's edition of the Red-White Singing Competition. I walked past groups of people who were holding red and white cheering sticks and other memorabilia. I saw fans waiting outside the studio, waiting to catch a glimpse of the singers who were leaving in black cars.

Finally as I turned into a corner, I saw a stall being set on the side of the road, selling coffee, amazake and soup. I couldn't resist.

First cup of coffee of 2016! They were setting a stall by the road selling coffee, amezake and soup. They were also the first people to wish me happy new year, so I couldn't resist. Happy new year!
Posted by Edmund Yeo on Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Year's Day itself was rather uneventful. Moved back into my Airbnb place at Tsukiji, took a nap, had some sushi at the supposedly famous Tsukiji Ekimae Sushizanmai, offered an incense to Buddha at Hongan-ji Temple, and then started walking towards Ginza.

New Year's Day. I'm taking a solitary walk from Tsukiji (where I'm staying for the week) to Ginza. The sky had turned...
Posted by Edmund Yeo on Friday, January 1, 2016

The sky turned dark very soon, and I found myself drowning in self-reflection. When I found Ginza, I was heartened by the fact that there were a bit more people, yet many shops were closed.

I started looking for a Starbucks. Found one beside Matsuya Ginza. Apparently this was the first ever Starbucks in Japan. The first day of 2016, spent in the first ever Starbucks in Japan, it was appropriate.

I took out my laptop.

I started writing.

A new story for a short film.

Maybe it might happen.

Maybe it won't.

But it sure felt great.