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Tokyo Christmas and New Year - clear separation / 30 December 2014

Swirls of coloured lights decorate the abundant planting in the streets. Good luck messages flash from the hoardings. The end of the year is fast approaching.

The Wako department store window has the usual crowds standing in admiration, blocking access to the pavement. This New Year's display constists of white sheep, with golden horns, lined up and facing the back of the window. Suddenly one of the sheep swivels around to peer out at the crowd. Passing pedestrians make sudden stop and backtrack to join the watching crowd.

Fearing last minute crowds we decided to fetch our end of year fish from Tsukiji today. This meant heading out long before the crack of dawn, but did result in the successful acquisition of three different types of crab and various prawns.

The day developes bright and warm and we take morning tea on the sunny, sheltered balcony.
Much later it sounds as if the nightly tapping has been joined by softly ringing bells, we are being well prepared for the year change.

2014 is being well rounded off, closed down; finished. A sort of 'spring cleaning' prepares us for the letting go.


Without really trying, two thousand and eight was the year
I left behind a whole back-pack of old pain, put it down,
and wandered away, reveling in a brand-new lightness;
discovering energy and inner fire, a weightless
intoxication for the New Year and a clearer mind
from which to grow and practice being artist, being me.
A hesitant twenty-fourteen opens my eye to the
need to shed psychic-spanx, the mental corsetry holding
too much of me in conformity, imaginary
restrictions, like cracks in a pavement I fear to tread on,
warping the shape of my artist for nothing other than
superstition, and a crazy idea of who I aught to be.