Frozen moments from the infinity that is time

Looking for Old Tokyo – Mukojima


Mukojima adjoins Kyojima and was, therefore, a logical area to look for examples of old Tokyo. Located on the east side of the Sumida River, Mukojima was fortunate during the 1945 bombings to avoid the extent of devastation experienced elsewhere. Whilst this has resulted in well-preserved shitamachi (low town) zones, there is also much evidence of an area in transition as new developments have followed the opening of the nearby Tokyo Skytree in 2012.

There was a second agenda to my walk through Kiyojima and that was to find geisha, given that Mukojima is one of the few areas in Tokyo where real geisha train and work. I could have joined an organised tour and been guaranteed success, but I much preferred to simply wander and trust in luck and instinct. As can be seen from pics 11 to 14, the mission was accomplished.

After wandering the streets for some time I came across an area that just felt right and decided to wait on a corner and play “paparazzi”. Well, after a short time I heard the familiar clip clopping sound of footsteps and the jangling associated with the hair ornamentation worn by trainee geisha on their way to engagements. A short while later an older woman came by (pic 14) carrying her shamisen, a stringed instrument used to accompany geisha during performances.

This post marks my 50th post and although it has taken longer than I had expected, I would like to thank those people who follow, read and comment on my blog. Your participation is most appreciated and I hope you will continue to find the blog interesting.

(Please click on any of the following images for an enlarged view.)

Author: johnliddlephotography

Photography reflects how I see the world around me. I respond to images that interest me, which can be anything ... people, places, colour, texture ... anything at all. By sharing my photos through this blog I know that viewers will see based on their life experiences. That is the wonder of photography ... one image ... many interpretations.

2 thoughts on “Looking for Old Tokyo – Mukojima

  1. Hi John,
    Heartiest congratulations on the 50th of these lovely posts that serve as personalised odes to a beautiful land!
    This was yet another enjoyable post, perhaps owing to the ‘old town’ feel at the heart of it, which is something that I’d found to be especially winsome of the enchanting streets of Kyoto. Thank you for sharing these captures of Mukojima, which evoke that wonderful serenity, as well.

    Love all the captures, especially the one with the ‘welcoming resident’ and her lovely smile, the splendid coiffure of the lady with the shamisen and the lovely details of the hair ornamentation and robe on the passing geisha.

    Here’s to many more of such beautiful posts of heart! 🙂
    Do take care and stay well.

  2. Hi B,
    One must capture these shots as they will not be around for ever, which is good and bad depending on whether one views the subject from a photographic or lifestyle perspective. I’m interested how you have zeroed in on the human interest shots, each of which are precious memories of my stroll through Mukojima. Although the streets cape may change in years to come, the geisha and shamisen players will provide an enduring link to the past, something I’m sure Kaz would appreciate.

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