I want to know it. I get up around 7 pm and minutes later I leave the house. The house is not ours, its the flat of Sayoko. She invited us via Couchsurfing and we are very glad to spend our week in Tokyo in her place. The day before, I asked her if it is true, that there are men in town, who do nothing else the whole day long, but pushing people into the subways, as their job. Of course with gloves. I mean its Japan.
She looked at me, a little confused, then she laughed and told me: Get up early in the morning, take the 8 o'clock subway to “Shibuya“.
Now I'm ready. No luggage, no suit, only me, the camera and my sibirian winterjacket. „I'm going into the City“ I hear myself telling to Gwen, but immedeatly when the words are spoken, I realise how stupid it sounds. How can you “go into the City“ being in a 36 Millionen Metropolis?
Thats probablly country bumpkin slang.
I put our daily budget into the ticket maschine, spending much money is on of the easiest things to do in Tokyo. I step on the esculator and there we go. Its so crowded I cannot see the floor anymore. And there they are: The men in the blue uniforns with the clean white gloves. One in front of each door. Subway comes. Doors open. Crowd moves in. Doors close. The men with the white gloves don't have to push. I'm a little disappointed. Then the choreographie starts, all the white gloved men wave their arms synchronously in an interesting little show, the moment for the subway to move on again. Not a minute later, the next one. I get flushed into the wagon. But its is surprisingly organised, even it is so crowded. I start thinking back of packed indian trains and I'm really surprised how smooth the tokyan style works. The last businessmen entering the wagon, turn around and push theirs asses into the bulk of people. Nobody touches anybody else with his hands. A fazinating, thousend times trained, performance.
And I'm thinking: „Why do I wear this damn jacket in here?“ The sweat starts three stations later. This is not for people with claustrophobian problems, or people in sibiran winterjackets.
And thats the way Tokyo is about. It is fazinating: the skyline, the cityview from high above, the bustling. It is fazinating, but not for a long time. The second day already, the headache, the dizziness starts. And then appears the question: „Why? Why do people build cities like this? Where does this go?“
It is not anymore about “going into the City“ to buy shoes, because of the better selection. “The City“ is the new living model in all parts of the world, it is a desire, a self-realisation, the idea of a “better“ life.
We are arriving: Shibuya, Tokyo!
Everybody is moving, bustling, nobody stands still...
And I start to think: “What a wonderful place in this world is Sibiria!“