Month: December 2014

A Christmas Cut

A Christmas cut.

With December 25th being a normal working day in Tokyo what better way to spend it than getting all trimmed up for tonight’s concert at Tokyo Opera City. Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony is a seasonal favourite here so it will be that followed by dinner in a local restaurant.

My local barber is a 40 minute walk away through the grounds of Meiji Shrine and then cutting across Shinjuku Park. Last week we renewed our annual season ticket for the latter, so decided to put it to good use. At Yen 2,000 (just over £10.00) we can go into the park as many times as we like for the year (compared to the normal entrance fee of Y200).

At this time of year the grass has all died off to a dull brown, and most of the autumn leaves have now fallen. However, there is still a stark beauty to the Japanese ornamental ponds.


Going to the barbers is an interesting experience. First you have to buy a ticket from a vending machine. Being Christmas Day, I decided to treat myself to the ‘full set’ which is the button at top left for a mere Y2,200 (£12.00). As I carry a point card from the shop which also has my chosen style drawn on to it, all I needed to do was to agree to the question “Your usual, sir?” and sit down for a shearing, shampoo and head massage. After which the seat was reclined and a hot wet towel laid on my face. One could be forgiven for thinking that this was a Japanese form of waterboarding, but it was just the preparation for the third element of the set; a shave and clean up of all extraneous hair, much of which I either forget to remove myself or would have to be a contortionist to do so.

That was all the trimmings done. Next for a quick lunch back in the Shinjuku Park café making very good use of my season ticket, and again coincidentally the top-left button of the vending machine which was ‘deer meat curry’ with rice,a side salad and a bowl of soup. Not too bad for £3.30.

Merry Christmas to all my readers!