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Friday, January 05, 2007

The morning got off to a normalish start, catching up with people from home, etc. Peter was going into work for a few hours today, so I took the bike and headed down to Aoyama Book Center by the UN University (the big store in the basement) to check out their three day foreign books sale. It was pretty great! They had a huge room of art, design, architecture, photography, etc. books for 20-80% off, and then another, more random, room of older design books and manuals, including, of all things A London Underground Identity Manual, which was interesting to flip through!

I got a few books to add to my art/design book collection, thanks to Hitomi's gift card :) My best find of the day was Phaidon's Contemporary World Architecture, a massive tome on architecture since the 1960's for Y1000 (10$)! It's a big book - amazon says: "Its sheer bulk and scope are staggering: about seven pounds and 512 large pages, with about 1200 illustrations (predominantly in color) depicting 660 buildings around the world." I'd say so - those hills on the way home were harder to pedal up with this book in the basket! Its absolutely gorgeous though - I'm excited to look through it properly!

I also picked up a DVD featuring movies by Charles and Ray Eames (powers of 10 isn't on it though), an Eames retrospective, the 40 page special issue of Wallpaper magazine which looks back on 'a decade of design interiors lifestyle' from October, and another book about architecure called: Architecture today (interesting for its quadra-lingualism which I only just noticed!). Not a bad haul for under $50.00!

Before heading back, I stopped to look at my Japanese books for a little while (notice I use the term look as opposed to study, oops!) and then biked back down Omotesando to the library. While Shibuya was quiet yesterday, Omotesando was absolutely packed today! I couldn't figure out if it was more people than normal, or if I'm just not used to it anymore after nearly three weeks away from the chaos. In any case, I'm still glad I had the bike to push all those books around, even if I wasn't riding anywhere fast!

Got a few interesting looking books at the library and then laden down, headed back home. There's a huge tent being set up in Yoyogi Koen which is interesting! I biked past it, but couldn't see signs for what it is. I would have guessed the Cirque du Soleil tent, but I didn't think they were turning up till February. Unfortunately, my keitai was dead, so no photos... Also, just checked the Cirque website, and can't find any mention of Tokyo on there - I have to dig out that flyer I picked up last year and check out what's going on...It's somewhere in my huge Tupperware bin of souvenirs and misc. paperage.

Came home to find Venus and Peter still at the office so I settled in to start (and eventually finish) a book that I got from the library today, The Hungry Ocean. It's a memoir/travelogue written by the only swordfish fisherman/boat captain in the world who is a woman. She writes about one of the trips (30 days) on the boat she captains along with her crew. It's pretty fascinating! What a brutal way to earn a living! It's a great read because she pulls no punches and is completely open, blunt, and detailed about describing life on the boat - a great way to go to sea vicariously!

Peter and Venus came home at tenish, and we ate leftover stew (so good!) for dinner, before watching some TiVo'ed stuff, including Ugly Betty (Navina, we need you to explain why she's leaving Mode and going to that other magazine!) and also saw the crazy story on Letterman, about the guy who jumped onto the train tracks to save another man's life - both of them were under the train as it passed over him, and the only bad thing that happened to the rescuer was 'my blue hat got dirty'. What a character, and a great story!

That's about it for today - keitai photos from Hilo, Kona, Kuaui, and a few from the ship have been edited into the requisite posts also.


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