I am quickly coming to love how urban Japanese have such a sense of personal style. Young men and women take great care in assembling interesting or unusual outfits in a very individual, sometimes eclectic fashion. It’s very rare to see anyone looking unkempt or sloppy.
Which speaks to what we come to perceive as an overall deep-rooted culture of respect in this place. No matter how crowded the locale, everyone seems able to maintain enough personal space that no one is ever touching another, even in a crowded subway! We NEVER see anyone talking in public on their cell phone, even though personal devices are ubiquitous! Crowds are always relatively quiet and respectful, and people are gracious to one another. Every interpersonal transaction, whether it be the exchange of money, entering or leaving a restaurant, exiting a train – is imbued with layers of respect and consideration that is so characteristic of this culture. It’s amazing, and lovely.
This afternoon Buzz and I meet up in SHIBUYA – another stop on the circle line – another distinct neighborhood known for its ultra-hip fashion scene! There’s an international fashion festival going on this week here, and we find a young upcoming designer staging a runway show outdoors in a prominent public park. What a visual feast!
The park and streets are pulsing with energy. It’s a young, revved-up crowd and the tempo of the place is vibrating! People come here to strut and dance and see and be seen. It’s wild!
It’s fantastic how the physical environment supports this show. Plazas, terraces, pedestrian bridges, promenades…all allowing views across or over or down onto whatever scene is happening. Thousands of interesting-looking people on the move!