In Praise of Shadows : An Adventure in Niigata Pt 1

Four friends went to Niigata together.

We were seeking quiet and a sense of real Japan.

Such things can rarely be found within a bludgeoning metropolis.

Our time here was magical and unforgettable and Hiro and I will definitely return.

Niigata for me is the home of rice! It grows everywhere! I never realised how brilliantly green rice growing is. It quite literally took my breath away. Niigata produces the Koshihikari variety, widely considered to be the highest-quality rice produced in Japan. It is also my most favourite rice in the world, the Niigata food post will hit this page next week!

The way.

There are so many tunnels that cut through hills in Japan.

Rice, beautiful Rice. Bet you never knew it was so green!

One day, I would like to live in a house like this.

Endlessly green

Home for a while

Our dear friend and I investigate.

There is something about the countryside that brings out the child in me.

Resting within the branches of an old tree.

I felt as though I was in Totoro’s world.

I felt a refreshing sense of peace.


Hiro is happy.

We played with fire……

…and marvelled at the poignant poetry that is senkou-hanabi

It rained the next day.

But not even rain can dull the brilliance of the rice fields.

“Such is our way of thinking—we find beauty not in the in the thing itself but in the patterns of shadows, the light and the darkness, the one thing against another creates.”

Junichiro Tanizaki “In Praise of Shadows”

“a degree of dimness, absolute cleanliness, and a quiet so complete one can hear the hum of a mosquito.”

Junichiro Tanizaki “In Praise of Shadows”

“Out beyond the sitting room, which the rays of the sun at best can but barely reach, we extend the eaves or build a veranda, putting the sunlight at still greater a remove. The light from the garden steals in but dimly through paper-paneled doors, and it is precisely this indirect light that makes for us the charm of the room. We do our walls in neutral colors so that the sad, fragile, dying rays can sink into absolute repose.”

Junichiro Tanizaki “In Praise of Shadows”

Thank you Mappa & AZK for the magic.