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If you’re with a 14 year old on a Sunday in Tokyo, it’s a no- brainer to join them in a Harajuku foray, the epicenter of pop culture in Tokyo.

In this case, a picture is most definitely worth a thousand words, so here’s some highlights of our day:

Our spirits were high as we began our immersion on Takeshita Dori, in a crush of young women, tourists, hawkers, vendors and noise!Takeshita Street

The most interesting encounter of the day was the creature in pink, not sure how to classify!creature in pink

I was the only one in our group who could have spent more time in this circus, so we moved through as quickly as the crowds would allow, although if on my own I could have easily enjoyed some more intent exploration.

The streets surrounding Takeshita were cheek to jowl with all kinds of  creative dress up items, which led to some inspired browsing. FYI, there are about Y120 to the American dollar.IMG_4091 IMG_4090 IMG_4089

In the sneaker department, this was just the tip of the iceberg of footwear. Some places don’t like you taking pictures, so you’ve got to be fast and/or charming to get away with it.IMG_4103 IMG_4104The yukata is the traditional Japanese summer robe, worn at onsen, or at festivals.  It was interesting to note that designers have taken to updating the look for young, contemporary taste.  It was surprising to learn that these limited edition items can sell for $500-$1000!IMG_4111 IMG_4112

Along the way, we met a few new friends.IMG_4102 IMG_4096IMG_4108What a wide and wonderful world we live in!

Dianne Vapnek

In an attempt to slow life's quickening pace, I'm writing to share my personal perspective on the aging process, its dilemmas, the humorous self-deception, the insights and the adventure of it all. I spent the bulk of my time in beautiful Santa Barbara, CA, but manage to get to NYC a few times times a year. I've been a dancer/dance teacher and dance supporter almost all my life. For the past20years, I help create and produce a month-long creative residency in Santa Barbara for contemporary American choreographers and their dancers. It's been incredibly gratifying. This year, I decided it's time to retire! Big change. I also now spend several weeks a year in Kyoto Japan, residing for several weeks in the spring and the fall. I've been magnetically attracted to Japan for many years. Now I live out a dream to live there part-time.


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