A view from the Park Hyatt hotel bar in Tokyo

View from the Park Hyatt Hotel bar in Tokyo

View from the Park Hyatt Hotel bar in Tokyo

There are  a fair number of places I have visited in my adult life, and with the exception of Antarctica, I have been to every continent. Of the places I have visited, there are few that give me this feeling of comfort and strangeness at the same time as Tokyo. The strangeness for a European is immediately clear and it is intimidating and liberating at the same time. Intimidating, because one always fears to be making a big faux pas in the next moment and not knowing why. It is liberating, because  – at least from the outside, Japanese seem to be very forgiving for the strange behaviour we non-Japanese show.  This is particularly true if you genuinely try to follow at least basic good behaviour and convey a certain modesty and courtesy. The knowledge that you will make mistakes anyway will give you a certain freedom, similarly to the odd relative whose behaviour everyone excepts even though it breaks social norm and convention.

Getting the chance to go to Japan is something I will always jump on and will always give me this feeling of wanderlust. Of course Tokyo is packed with places with a view. But the one  place which I want to highlight is the  hotel bar of the Park Hyatt in Tokyo. It is of course the bar famously featured in the film “Lost in Translation” starring Scarlett Johansen and Bill Murray.

I visited the place last September during a short trip to Japan. And while it is now probably  a rather touristy place to visit, the bar has a fantastic atmosphere and the view, particularly in the evening, with all the lights and the skyline of Shinjuku is something which I will always remember. The photo on the top was taken in this bar and while the picture is a mere snapshot, full of imperfections due to the  reflections from the lights in window, the greenish colour cast from the tungsten lights, I hope it still transports a bit the fascination for the Japanese capital with all the extremes it exhibits.

A horse portrait

Horse head

Horse head portrait

Every day on my way to work I pass by a field with a large chestnut tree. And almost everyday there are two horses in this field. I am by all means no horse lover, on the contrary, I really do not get why a lot of people are so drawn towards these animals. So I cannot tell you what type or race these horses are or if they are particularly beautiful animals, if they are young or old or similar.

But I must admit, that these two horses are often standing beneath this large tree day after day, like an old couple sitting on their favourite park bench intrigued me. So at some point I simply had to take a picture.