Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Day 345, 11 Dec 2017: Missed the sparkles...

Day 345: ...but the work goes on

Monday morning, early class. Slightly less crowded than usual train (not sure why that was) and get to the office just in time to make the final preparations for class. To their credit, the students do a pretty good job at turning up at that hour. 

Talk today pf politicians and political parties and how to make this interesting for students...been thinking about it all night, on the train and into the morning...I'll let them form their own parties. 

Results next week. 

So I missed the morning sparkles on the port. I mean, they were there, it was a lovely (albeit cold) morning but just didn't get the lens pointed in the right direction at the right time.

But the new/old barque (actually, I don7t know if it is truly a 'barque' as such, but I like the word) is back in port...and it was just a day of topping and tailing as I looked outside. 

Tug working

Masts on high

Cranes on high

Wheel on high

And the yellow one

Nice day. 

[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 2.00pm-2.01pm, 2.34pm, 3.03pm; 11 December 2017] 

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Day 344, 10 Dec 2017: Another Sunday...

Day 344: ...another day at work

I had a plan once. A grand plan. Each Sunday I would head somewhere different: a park, the beach, somewhere. I was concerned I would get to the end of five years here and will have really only spent that time in Tokyo, unless work commitments had me elsewhere. Well, it is a fine plan except for this time of year. Entrance exams. And we attend to supervise (last week) or meet the students who have passed and will come to the uni starting next year (today), a kind of orientation, or meet the staff type of thing. 

Nice, I suppose. 

Anyway, I went and found myself with a spare hour of so in between, unable to go too far (transport issues) nor did I bring any actual work with me, because I wasn't expecting the spare time. (Although, of course, one always carries a spare book or three just for moments like these.)

It gave me a chance to wander around the campus, which was nice. The leaves are mostly gone, but some colour is still there...


Red with sunlight

leaves in the shade

Bright, pitted

Memorial for students killed by the Tokyo bombing during WW2

The fallen cone

Leaves of the icho tree, Tokyo's tree

Looks like this

More afternoon sun

Standing out a bit

Camellias are on the way

Blue sky and branches

Pine needles in a stack

Almost magenta

Bird life

tree trunk

The fallen


It's back to the main job in the morning, the early start, the crowded train...there is a short holiday in just two weeks from now. And counting...

[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 2.12pm-2.34pm; 10 December 2017] 

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Day 343, 9 Dec 2017: Flitting about...

Day 343: ...or working on it

We have to attend the other campus for a new student induction tomorrow. These are students who have completed their entrance exams and will be joining us next year. It works as a kind of early orientation. I guess it is a nice thing to do.

For me though, given I have classes first thing Monday, it meant a day in the office to finalise Monday's class, just in case tomorrow takes longer than expected. I don't like to be rushed and/or underprepared...

I took the long way round to the office, via the promenade through the buildings rather than the short cut through the station. The sun, the light, the blue sky...

Light on the leaves


Side blue

Big Sight





In the distance

over rainbow bridge

...just from a slightly different angle than usual. There were even a birds getting the last of the berries on the de-leafed trees. 

Nice light. Oh, and a few fireworks up the road to end the day. 

[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 3.45pm-4.12pm, 7.08pm-7.09pm; 9 December 2017] 

Day 342, 8 Dec 2017: Blue skies one day...

Day 342: ...winter the next

So what is that saying? 'Careful what you wish for?' or similar...Yes, yesterday's, indeed the last two days of stunning blue skies turned to remind us that it is actually winter. By the time I left work at about 8.00pm, there was rainy, sleety, rain with accompanying chill wind. I wasn't at all surprised to find that just a couple of suburbs away recorded a brief snowfall. I suspect there will be more of that this week. 

There was a delay getting to work this morning. The trains, well, when they are good they are very very good but when one stops...the rest is chaos. And not on one of my lines this morning, but both! That is just bad luck. With good planning, it is really not much more than an inconvenience, the trains do get going again, just late. Whenever I have classes to get to, I always give myself a buffer, just in case. So far it has worked out ok, the longest hold up has been an hour, and I've still made it. It's a big buffer. 

Bridge span through the haze

Over and out (of here) 

Hazy day on the Bay today, limited opportunities for pics, it is getting darker earlier and earlier each day. But there is always something to look at. 

Now, time to find the snow boots and gloves...

[Lumix TZ-85, 2.52pm-2.57pm; 8 December 2017] 

Day 341, 7 Dec 2017: Just another day...

Day 341: ...close to paradise

You can forget sometimes, just how exotic friends and family think it is to be living and working overseas, especially if that city just happens to be Tokyo, that workplace just happens to be by the Bay, just happens to be in the heart of where a number of Olympic venues will be in 2020. 

But it is also just work. Work that is like work at home: classes, preparation, meetings, marking, grants writing, grants thinking, research...OK, maybe that' snot in the realm of normal working for most people. 

Days like today, clear blue skies, open spaces, really do make me appreciate what I do, where I am and how I got here...

secret signs in the quad

Last of the colours

On a clear-ish day

But we've all got work to do

...really. I don't take it for granted, really. 

[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 1.19pm-1.20pm; 7 December 2017] 

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Day 340, 6 Dec 2017: Chugging away...

Day 340: ...all the boaties 

A stunning winter's day today, no other way to describe the weather: clear blue skies, sun, oh and a forecast top of 10degrees, eventually, rising from 3degs. Blue sky compensates for a lot. 

Wednesdays are my 'research' days though during semester they tend to be the catch up on admin all the teaching has prevented days to be more precise. And then, for some reason, Wednesdays are the preferred days for meetings...no wins really. 

But back to the weather. The clear blue days and my prime position ten floors up afford me wonderful views which can take the grr out of admin tasks...

Yellow on blue

Crossing wakes

Rolling waves

A load


Pushing through

All the little boats were chugging away today it seemed, each time I lifted my head above the pile of papers. All chugging away, all going about their business, just like me. I wonder if they too marvel at the blue skies and blue water days we have from time to time. 

[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 1.53pm-1.58pm, 3.14pm, 3.48pm, 4.01pm;  7 December 2017] 

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Day 339, 5 Dec 2017: Impressions...

Day 339: ...the impressions of a day

Some days, the photos really just take themselves, no rhyme, no reason. They just happen. For me, photography is about many things, but one of them is about capturing light and shade (yes, more or less strictly the very definition of photography, but still...).

And somewhere along the way today, that more or less became today's theme, in the clouds mainly. It was the first bank of clouds that caught my eye, like ripples on the sky...

Budding bud at the bus stop

The cloud bank that started it all

Fire in the sky

Streaming past the wheel

Over the port

Last of the 7 day b&w challenge
And then the day just progressed and the clouds came and went and changed colour along the way...just a marvel really, and marvellous that we mere humans can try and capture it all on film pixels. Mere impressions of a day really. 

[Camera : Lumix TZ-85, 12.08pm, 4.35pm, 4.40pm; iPhone6s, 9.55am, 9.03pm; 5 December 2017]