This is the normal way a mother carries her baby in Japan. In the west, the baby would be strapped to the mother's front. The Japanese way would not look proper in North America because of the way the straps crisscross the breasts.
I guess most of you have heard of bonsai trees. Well this is an eight foot high version of one. It is in the main park for the town I lived in. The water in the background was the moat for the castle that used to be where the park is now.
This is a farmer who had a plot next to my apartment building. Small farm plots in the middle of urban areas were (I don't know how prevalent they are today) quite common. You can smell them a block away because they use manure to fertilize their plants.
This is the farmer's plot with snow covering it. Notice how small it is. Believe it or not, those are cabbage heads sticking out of the snow and they tasted great when finally picked.
I'm not sure what religion this person was. In fact, my Japanese friends could not tell me either. He wore this sheepskin like hide on the front and back and would enter the genkan (entrance) and start chanting. Note that in Japan, it is basically ok to slide open someone's door without knocking.
Most Japanese never see a real golf course. They go to driving ranges to play golf. This was my favorite place to go because it was the biggest. I still could hit the back net with a 7 iron however. A Special Note: I once played on a golf course in Japan with a very rich friend who was a member of a club. Our golf clubs were carried on a rail on the left side of the fairway. There was a road between two holes. The rail went up in the air (with our clubs) over the road.
This is the obon festival on my town's main street. A very big event each year in Japan. They set up a tower and beat the old style japanese drums. Everybody dances in the streets. A lot of fun.
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