Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Japan, Ahhh

I have been thinking a lot about Japan this week. I met the Secretary of State (for AZ) yesterday. He, too, served as a missionary in Japan years ago. We had a brief, stilting (on my part) conversation in Japanese, and he seemed to have adored the country as much as I did.

A couple of weeks ago I decided I was going to check out Google Plus. It's still not capturing me as a social media snag-of-all-my-time, which I should be thankful for, and I might go back and check out my circles sometime, but for now I have to say one really spectacular find did come out of my venture into Google Parts Unknown. It made me stumble across Shoot Tokyo.

Shoot Tokyo is a blog of a guy, Dave Powell, who lives in Tokyo and goes to different neighborhoods and takes pictures and posts them and comments on them. A post a day. So many of his pictures for me are what I'd call in Japanese "natsukashii," or nostalgic~. They make me sigh and wish I could see that beautiful place again.

Maybe a zillion people will buy my sumo wrestling book and I can use the proceeds to take my family to see Japan. Wouldn't that be a dream?

One post of his in particular was a doozie on my nostalgia-ometer. It is of an alley in a neighborhood called Shinjuku, which is where I lived. This is yakitori alley, a narrow, narrow street where they sell yakitori (cooked bird/chicken on a stick. Tender meat, soy and sesame seasonings, salty perfection.) Since I spent so much of my time in that city on foot walking around meeting people, this is the Tokyo I saw very often. It was warm, with smiling faces, friendly merchants, giggling school girls, grinning grandmas, good feelings.

I loved Japan. I still love it. The Japanese people I met were more than kind to me, they were embracing. It's a beautiful place for a thousand reasons. I had to write a novel about Japan--and I hope when the book comes out that those who read it get a similar sense of wonder. My goal was to take readers on a virtual trip to the islands of the rising sun, tell them a story, and let them dream. I hope I succeeded, even in a small measure.


  1. Can't wait for Big in Japan! If this blog post is any indication, I'm sure your readers will fall in love with the place through your writing.

  2. Thanks so much, Sherral. Your comment makes me happy!

  3. You're doing everything right! Keep it up. Glad to have you as part of the JFP family.

  4. Thank you, Christopher. JFP does make me feel like family! So far so great!

  5. Okay, so I'm thinking I should play the love interest when it's made into a movie...assuming, of course, that there IS a love interest, and knowing you, there is. Can you make her 40-ish? Thank you. And then we'll shoot in Japan and do our Chris Stewart campaigning. In fact, here's an idea! Let's convince the campaign that it's necessary for us to travel to Japan to get his name out, and that we'd be happy to do it, if they'll just pay our tickets and lodging. Go talk to them and I'll wait. :)

  6. Ahhh, Lisa. I love you so. Yes, you can play the love interest. Except...she's Japanese. Can you look Japanese? Just for the film? Also, yes. I'll let the campaign in on our suggestions. I'm sure they'll slap their foreheads and ask, "Why didn't WE think of that?" Yakitori for everyone!

  7. Hi Jennifer - Glad you like ShootTokyo. I hope to see you around... - Dave


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