2007 Japan Vacation


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schoolkids at Kasuga Shrine, Kyoto

Not everywhere:

Miko at Meiji Shrine, Tokyo

Just wanted to make that clear.

Going up?

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When I took this picture, I was just trying to capture the cable cars that got us up to Oowakudani. Now I kind of wish they weren’t in the frame…

cable cars at Oowakudani

Smoke gets in your eyes...

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Incense burner at Toudai-ji

Koi Pirates Deer

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Koi at Imperial Palace East Gardens, Tokyo
Lake Ashi Pirate Ship Cruise, Hakone
Nara Deer Park

Okay, I couldn’t really think of any way to tie these pictures together.

Palace School Station

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Another set of random pictures from the trip.

Kyoto Imperial Palace
School trip to Kinkaku-ji, Kyoto
view from the tracks, Shinbashi Station, Tokyo

Failsafe Fuji

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[Update: Just spotted an older version of the same scene on Google Earth. The pretty picture replaced real information.]

“Hello, and welcome to the third station. We know you all paid for the chance to see Mt. Fuji, but just in case the weather didn’t cooperate, here’s what you should be able to see from here. More pictures are available in the gift shop, along with snacks, film, and batteries.”

Fuji from Third Station

Avoiding confusion

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Men's Esute

One of the first pictures I took with the new camera was a view from the tracks at Shinbashi Station. Unfortunately, the context was sufficiently involved that nobody I showed it to got the joke. When I take the print to my Japanese conversation teacher tonight, though, she’ll get a good laugh out of it.

Why? Because a number of the younger Japanese women associated with the department are into Esute, which is a style of beauty parlor in Japan. They love to talk about this stuff, but students who Google “esute” in English will find a lot of sites that are about something very different: massage parlors for men.

It turns out that the sex trade was looking for another euphemism a while back, to compete with “soaplands”, “fashion massage”, “delivery health services”, and the rest, and since massage was one of the services offered at women’s esute parlors, they adopted the name.

As a result, potential customers have to make sure they know what kind of esute a particular shop offers. Both of them will have pictures of fashionable young women out front, and attractive young women working inside. So, when I looked up from the tracks and saw a big sign reading “Otoko no Esute”, I knew what Dandy House was offering.

Noise Ninja

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I finally got around to making a proper noise profile of my little Canon camera, so here’s a quick sample of how well Noise Ninja cleans up an ISO 1600 image. Note that this is just using the default settings; it’s capable of more aggressive noise reduction, but that can eliminate too much detail in some images.


the view from Decks, Odaiba


[noise-reduced] the view from Decks, Odaiba

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