Monday, January 18, 2010

First impressions always last

I think Tokyo has been one of the only places I have been where the ride in from the airport was exciting.
At one point the freeway went over a rise and in the far distance I saw Mt Fuji- snow covered from top to base, with no cloud on the peak. It seemed to take up the whole sky and horizon even at that distance of more than 300kms away. It literally made me gasp and I felt its presence deep in the centre of my being. I know that sounds corny, but I can’t explain why it made me feel that way. I had read about the cult of looking for views of Mt Fuji in my Hiking guide book and thought it was an odd hobby. But I tell you- I’m hooked. I hope tomorrow to go to the top of Mt Takao to see it again. I really fluked a good clear day. Everyone I have told can’t believe I saw it from so far north.
These pictures does not really capture the moment. The guy in the seat in front of me went crazy trying to capture it on film too.
Other things from the bus ride in that still stick in my mind are:
  • The trees being held in place by tripods and wrapped in cloth- I think that is just a winter measure against frost.
  • The pastel signage on the trucks- especially the stylised logo of a black cat carrying kitten in it’s mouth. I assumed it was a cat food company but I have seen so many of them in Tokyo that I’m revising that opinion.
  • Looking down from the elevated freeway into a small park where a woman in a tailored white knee length coat was smoking a cigarette, standing, staring up at the freeway.


  1. i know i'm replying to a way-old post but your description of going from not-expecting-much-and-not-really-knowing-what-the-fuss-was-about to releasing and audible gasp when you first saw fuji san was the exact same expreience as i had...when i saw it for the first time, i just got it.
    what an amazing place.

  2. thanks Anne Louise nice to know the mountain affected you too. It started a bit of an obession which I am documenting on this blog: