Tokyo Notebook

-・- From My Everyday Life to Japanese Culture -・- Why don't you see the real Japan, not the typical foreigners' version.

26 2013

Nanduti - Ñanduti

Nanduti 1

Do you know “Nanduti”?
Well, I'm also totally new to the craftwork.

It’s exquisite lacemaking, from Paraguay, made from cotton or other fine vegetable fibers. The word Naduti means spiderweb in Guarani. Online dictionaries and web sites concerning lacemaking say about it in many ways: it’s introduced into Paraguay by the Spaniards, a comparable lace is made on the island of Tenerife and known under various names, and making of the lace is a tradition begun by Paraguay's Guarani. So, I’m interpreting it’s the fruit of invasion called the Age of Discovery.

Nanduti 2

Nanduti 3
I hope it can show how delicate and intricate it is.

I saw it first time at Munn, a café I wrote about last but one where some pieces of the work were displayed and also for sale. I was surprised the fine, intricate lace and became captivated by them. Unfortunately, however, except simple and small ones, delicate intricately patterned pieces were not for sale. The difference between poor and elaborated ones was clear even to my untrained eye, so after I saw fine ones, I wasn’t disinclined to have a simple one.

I asked the café staff why don’t you sell fine ones, and the staff said that they are too valuable to sell and also expensive. The white one in the picture (about 18-by-12 cm) costs tens of thousands of yen.

Nanduti 4

I looked the things up on the Internet and found there are lessons for the lace in Tokyo. I think considerable skill is required to make a good one, but some Japanese women with fast hands may be able to do it.


Posted by Kinakinw | 14:36 | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | Tokyo Life

23 2013

Right Place to Take ID Photo

Tokyo Metropolitan Office

I went to the Tokyo Metropolitan Office yesterday to get my passport renewed.
That was another opportunity for me to need a good ID photo after my driver license renewal last summer. The passport picture is more important than that of driver license because while I use my passport for ten years, the valid period of the license is five years. Although I know no one cares about the photo, I would like to avoid using the passport with an unacceptable photo of myself.

Unlike the license renewal where the officials take picture of everyone at the office (it’s literally one-shot deal), we can prepare that of passport by yourself prior to the renewal. So, I was thinking to get satisfactory one ahead of time, but actually I didn’t do it until I had to.

Yesterday morning, I had three options to get the picture: a proper portrait studio (expensive but many touch up options), a studio at a print service shop (moderate and some touch up options), and a photo booth (inexpensive). I chose the middle one and had my picture taken by the shop manager with “beautiful skin” print processing. However, I couldn’t approve of it.

I decided to forget about that shot, stopped off briefly in a photo booth at the near station on the way to Tokyo Metropolitan Office, and get an OK picture at 800 yen. I didn’t expect a nice shot by it, but I was totally wrong. The machine has developed very much. There was “beautiful skin” print processing (just costs 100 yen more than ordinary one), and the lighting was nice. The most wonderful point about it was that a photo turns out to be moderately-smooth. I mean, while the one taken by the manager was so realistic and textured, the machine hides unnecessary irregularities of face. I thought it has absorbed features of Purikura (an oversized passport photo making booth that fits two-and usually more - smiling faces on a miniature picture usually framed with cute characters like).

I don’t know the other machines are good or not. The one I used was “CITY PHOTO STATION (by Fuji Film)”, which should be scattered across Japan. It’s really great
全てのボックスが良く写るかどうかはわかりません。私が利用したのは、フジフイルムが展開しているCITY PHOTO STATION。全国に広く行き渡っていると思います。なかなかやるもんですね。

Posted by Kinakinw | 21:34 | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | Tokyo Life

18 2013

The Departure and the Arrival

Munni 1

It was a balmy afternoon so typical of May.
I went to a café and restaurant named Munni for lunch with sister. A tenant of the space where it’s located often changes, so from my perspective the café opened before I knew it.

It is hard to describe what kind of café it is. From the signs and menus in the doorway, it seemed to be an American-type waffle and hamburger place, and actually they serve American-type food. However, from their HP, their concepts are “the source of good health and good appetite” and “tea” (so it doesn’t serve have coffee).

Munni 2 Munni 3

I felt the space was minimally renovated after a previous restaurant closed. The interior, decoration, furniture, plates and utensils were quite incongruous. It looked like the owner was in hurry when open the restaurant and collected items in a few days.

Anyway, their hamburger was fairly good, and the staff was friendly and kind.

Munni 4
Lovely staff said that to express their love for the customers, their buns are in the shape of a heart.

Amishiro park
The café is in front of a children’s park called Amishiro Park I often visited in my childhood.

Posted by Kinakinw | 20:34 | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | Tokyo Life

01 2013

Animal Operetta, Les Girafes

Les Girafes 1

That was the other free show at Roppongi Hills called “Les Grafes” by a French street arts company named “Compagnie OFF” established in 1986 in Tours.
こちらは六本木ヒルズで行われたもう一つのショー、フランスのストリートアートパフォーマンス集団「Compagnie OFF」による「動物たちのオペレッタ」。同集団は1986年にツールで設立されたそうです。

The main performers were the nine giraffes, clown, diva, and trickster-like man (not in the pictures). To make a long story short, in the show the clown teeter-tottered and up in the air, the diva sang her heart out diva, and the trickster sprinkled golden powder. Then, a herd of red giraffes was slowly, gracefully moving on, and the circus started. Sorry for the poor report, but that’s kind of what it was like.

Les Girafes 2

Les Girafes 3 Les Girafes 4

It was too crowded to see the whole story of the show, but sill the show was most fun ever! It was so exciting that the herd of red giraffes in the streets of Tokyo.
I had a great time thanks to the complex in the first half of Golden Week Holidays.

Les Girafes 5
I got the perfect shot, but the lack in sharpness in it.

Posted by Kinakinw | 09:54 | Comment [0] | TrackBack [0] | Tokyo Life

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