Saturday, December 30, 2017

Minam-Izu - Three Days in Paradise!

It's becoming a bit of a tradition with us, we spend Christmas weekend in Minami-Izu.

Info note:Minami-Izu is a town located at the southern tip of Izu Peninsula in Kamo District, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan.

After riding various trains all morning we arrived at the the last train stop in the town of Shimoda - time for lunch! Emi had done a little advance research and picked this restaurant in the old-town part of Shimoda.

Nothing beats an ice cold beer with lunch; especially when one doesn't have to go back to work after lunch.

The front of the restaurant. The food was excellent, the service was great and the atmosphere was superb! Highly recommended by me.

Next morning early before breakfast I went down the Yumigahama beach hoping to see a spectacular sunrise. It just didn't happen; oh well.

Despite the lack of a super cool sunrise I did enjoy a nice walk on the beach.

Walking back to the hotel I passed by this famous seafood restaurant.

After breakfast Emi and I embarked on a nature walk along the Aono river.

I've walked along this river so many times and I never get tired of it.

Every bridge is beautiful - in it's own way.

This is strange, the Kawazu-zakura cherry blossom trees are already starting to bloom.

 Nothing beats a morning walk along a river.

I see that the nanohana (mustard greens) are starting to bloom too!

And, here come the daffodils too! Nothing like spring time in December.

For most parts of the river there are paved walking paths on both sides. It makes walking or jogging very easy.

Heading back to the hotel we pause for the traditional taking pictures of each other.

Older and wiser still the same as the years go by.

Next morning again I get up early and head down to the beach in optimistic anticipation of a beautiful sunrise. Is there a bit of luck in the wind? Will it happen?


Looking like it might happen!

Good enough!

Perhaps it's not great but compared to yesterday it's fantastic.

Walking back to the hotel; I feel good.

By-the-way, it is Christmas morning and I've got the entire beach to myself - Merry Christmas!

A side wind is blowing across the wave crests.

A last look back at Yumigahana beach. After breakfast we'll checkout of the hotel and take the free shuttle back to the Shimoda train station.

Inside the Shimoda train station and we decided to upgrade and book seats on the "Super View Odoriko Train". We'll be riding to Yokohama in style. Life is good!

The Super View Odoriko Train - Nice!

We are greeted at our coach.

There's a reason they call it the "Super View".

Emi tells me not to get used to this. She says next time we'll be back on the local train riding in the cheap seats.

Maybe so but for today I'm soaking it in.

Passing by Atami city.

The beauty of the Pacific ocean.

It's time for a cup of coffee and a piece of cake - sometimes it truly is good to be me.

Thanks for stopping by!

Bonus poem!

Sweet Seventy One

One Day I’ll be seventy one
I can hardly wait
It’s going to be fun

W-2s will be a thing of the past
I’ll be drawing social security
Man, what a gas

With silver hair atop my noggin
I’ll be doing the disco duck
Even if I can’t remember my login

Seventy one will be the new sixty
I’ll just be getting warmed up
I’ll probably feel more like fifty

My enthusiasm to age is simply amusing
It’s like looking forward to death
Like winning at losing

-- Mike

Bonus picture!

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Yokohama through the Voigtlander 40mm f1.2 Nokton VM lens

The title says it all. It was a beautiful winter day and I decided to go for a walk. So, I put my Voigtlander 40mm f1.2 Nokton VM lens on my Sony A7II camera (using a Voigtlander VM/E Close Focus Adapter) and out the door I went.

Like many of my walk-abouts I started at the waterfront.

As I moved on I pursued my photographic passion - everyday people!

Out at the end of Osanbashi pier I was all alone with my thoughts.

Then a swarm of school boys moved in to check out the view.

Inside the Port Operations building is another man alone with his thoughts.

Who's the boss?

Couples strolling the promenade in Yamashita park.

I'm thinking mother and daughter.

Cold weather won't slow us down.

A fellow photographer checking out her shot.

The Birdman of Yamashita park.

This young lady is the living definition of the word photogenic [photogenic-adj - looking attractive in photographs].

We can't all be photogenic but we can be interesting; or at least feel tired of being interesting.

Marching through China Town.

Like I said "we can be interesting".

An attractive innocence and a white beret.

It was all fun and sightseeing until she stubbed he toe

We're just good friends.

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

And, we all had a real good time!

Pearls on a lady always look good.

She was thinking - anything is better than being stuck in the house.

Determination is her strength.

Yokohama Park and the last of the autumn leaves.

Okay, maybe I'm getting carried away with the leaves thing.

Saying goodbye to the park.

Red bricks and blue sky - works for me.

Coffee break!

Not everyone gets a coffee break.

A Spanish restaurant in the afternoon sun.

Matching collar and hair - very fashionable.

She looked down her nose at me!

Last shot of the day: A party waiting to happen!

Thanks for stopping by!