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Saitama

Beware of chikan with claws

Even though Japan is generally such an orderly country, there are many warning signs telling people how to be careful and how to behave.  I found this sign at the entrance to Kita-in Temple in Kawagoe last weekend.  It says to be careful of chikan (perverts) and bag snatchers – but apparently, only the ones with sharp claws.  It’s good to see community minded people warning us all of local dangers. (more…)

Old Edo streetscape survives in Kawagoe

Kawagoe promotes itself as “Little Edo”, with a streetscape that lets us imagine what a town in the Edo period might have looked like.  One key stretch of the main street even comes without power lines, which are so often a blight on the Japanese cityscape.  This might sound like only a small attention to detail, but it is noticeable way of making the streetscape so much more enjoyable.  If only cars were removed from the main historical street as well! (more…)