Friday, 31 October 2014


EARLY INTO THE NEW SHOP today to get to work on the coffee menu.  it took a couple of hours just to draw in up and then i did the final lettering in a large texta.   it was abysmal so now i'm having another go in the morning, using brush and acrylic on heavy paper.   fingers crossed.
It was great to have a job to do though, i had the whole place to myself for the morning.  spent time with cal this afternoon, he's becoming so vocal, funny little fellow.

 the perfect kneeling
cushion, a pack of
disposable nappies

 time for a coffee
with rene and tila
at westwood
bakery - great
bread and cakes
rene and tila getting some business done

These gorgeous little pre schoolers are transported like this, always in their uniforms, bright colours like orange and hot pink, always with hats, they're so cute

back to the shop to do the sign,  the beginning of something terrible.
 i'm having another go tomorrow

THIS EVENING rene and i walked around the streets and a i did rubbings of the manholes, with his help.
I'm so pleased i got to do this, they look lovely and it was fun.  didn't get run over either :0)

the new shop is coming along nicely

    nice moon tonight

Wednesday, 29 October 2014


A DAY of thinking i was doing one thing and ending up doing another.  I was all psyched up to paint rene's menu for the shop today, but the key was with the plumber, then rene took sayaka out for lunch, then later for the rest of the day, it's 7.30 now, cal's asleep and i've done nothing all day except wander round a few shops and sit with cal.  feeling frustrated, tomorrow's my last full day here, i hope i can do the sign, not sure how it will go. and i want to do a few rubbings of manholes (ooh, that
sounds a bit rude).  well, i can only do it when the street is clear, either very early or late and i'd rather have rene with me.  who knows if it will happen

coffee this morning in a large bookshop
rene and cal both have magazines named in their honour :0)

my dapper son
in the hat i
bought him
soon after i got

Tuesday, 28 October 2014



WHENEVER I'M AWAY my thoughts turn to my ultra soft luxury mattress at home when the trip is coming to an end.  I'm thinking about it now :0)  3 sleepnights and one on the plane and i'll be home - i think i'll sleep for a week - to paraphrase the great bette davis - granny-ing ain't for cissies :0)

meeting another friend of GIRA GIRA -  he's a young photographer who seemed quite shy until the camera came out :0)  i didn't even notice him posing like this until i saw the shot.  it's virtually impossible to photograph anyone here without them doing the two finger thing - even the group of women in their lovely traditional kimonos the other day.  i had to wait till they walked away to get a good shot

the complete bug - cal in his ladybird suit sitting on his red cherry seat.  the little shoes are from an op shop in melbourne, a gift from baaba

Monday, 27 October 2014



CAL WAS UP so late last night, out on an early halloween ride with ren and sayaka and a group of friends, that he's slept all day.  it's 4.30 and he's still sleeping so i'm having a movie day.  It was thunder and lightning and rain last night so today is dark and humid.
Apparently the ride was fun despite the weather and the kids had a ball.


this morning  i dropped into the new shop to discuss doing the coffee sign for the wall. just look at tila's beautifully neat collection of tools and offcuts on the floor

ren and i rode
over to 
- a multi story
art and craft
supply shop, to
find paint for the 
sign. i'm planning
it now

Sunday, 26 October 2014



and yes . . .
he's cute as a bug 
father and son  :0)


MY DAY OFF - the first day without cal since i got here - it was great to just sleep in, get and up wander off to a flea market down on the canal (having finally got my bearings) and meet rene for lunch in the sun.   It was interrupted just as his food arrived on the table by a frantic phone call from sayaka, apparently one of the neighbours had seen the shop door ajar, it had obviously not been locked the night before or someone had broken in.   rene took off on the skateboard to check and all was well, what a relief.  it was lovely to spend time with rene - it's been way too long.
I spent the afternoon just strolling along the huge shopping arcade, watching everyone, taking in the mad signage, a beer at the end of the day.   nice.

this was at a flea market that ran along the canal, i got a few bargains there before meeting rene  for lunch
finding a quiet spot in a busy place

after lunch i strolled up to shinsaibashi - a huge shopping arcade, just a sea of people
this creepy guy in a halloween mask was somehow very threatening.  the group of girls was trying to photograph him, much conversation going on, trying to be inconspicuous,  yeah right

 the daimaru building is 
spectacular. art deco mixed
with moorish, just a superb
example of beautiful 
architecture.   I must go 
back and get some decent
look at these power lines - at least they're all bundled into  groups
and housed in yellow casings, but the power lines in asia always
amaze me

little cal in his ladybird suit - dressed for early halloween, there were a lot of people in the
streets this afternoon obviously going to halloween parties

in the park where we take cal to play, these guys do amazing tricks with
the soccer ball for absolutely ages, they're so talented - my pic gives no

Saturday, 25 October 2014


LOTS OF WALKING today - with cal.  right up to Shinsaibashi shopping arcade, an absolute sea of people walking in both directions, shops for blocks and blocks and blocks. it was just a reconnoitre for tomorrow - i'm having a day off, just walking by myself with the camera and meeting rene for lunch on the canal, in the sun hopefully

yesterday in Dotonbori - the street where sunny and i stayed
on our trip a couple of years ago.   it's full of the craziest, hugest
signage, and a sea of people

sayaka's dad takeshi, helping out in the new shop yesterday with tila

swapping cards in gira gira yesterday with an artist who does a lot of interesting graphic design

CAL -  watching his kinder songs on the iPhone

crazy signs in 
dotonbori today -
it's a place just
buzzing with
activity, even
more so at
night time.

don't ask me what this is

a favorite sign