Observe your city, town, street, or patch of earth and report back — in your favorite medium.
The Flamboyant Flaneur
The fellow in this story can not stay home. He puts on the shoes of the flaneur or casual wanderer. After the long flight across the Pacific Ocean, He arrived at his favorite city, rested, and ready to enjoy all it had to offer. He decided to stroll the streets for a while to see what he could find to satisfy his inquiring mind. He stopped at several gift shops filled with fancy china, glassware, artwork, jewelry, and trinkets, limiting his purchases for the luggage.
He took a break in a tree-filled park. His nose was treated to the sweet essence of cherry blossoms, almost overwhelming. Enough to make him feel good when He looked at the beauty of the Cherry Blossoms. The Cherry Blossom Festival was at its peak, a magnificent event. Geisha Girls were dancing in many locations. They were dancing at the Cherry Blossom Festival in Tokyo’s Ueno Park to coincide with the Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C…
He strolled along past the open market where you could buy live or dead ducks, chickens, or whatever your heart desired. There was a sidewalk café, away from the traffic noise and constant horn honking. He decides to rest and indulge himself with some sushi, rice, and some green tea. The sushi was delicious, a palate, pleasing delight. There were many flavorful bits of the oceans, best. It was all served on a large, ceramic platter with some seaweed garnish, boiled rice, and a raw egg. He did not eat to overfill, just enjoyed a good bit of each delicacy to satisfy his taste buds, and then was off to explore the waterfront.
He arrived at the train station just in time for one of the pushers to shove him into the car. The door still hit him in the rear when it closed. That train, crammed full of bodies, would take him to the south end of the city. There He could explore the waterfront and witness the ships going in and out of the harbor, hoping to meet an old friend. The weather was beautiful. The sun was up almost to the mid sky. A gentle warm southerly breeze came across the water, a very relaxing place to watch people going to and from their businesses or their homes. Most were traveling by foot or bicycle from the fish markets. The air was noticeable there.
He discovered two young, lovely, friendly ladies on a street corner at the waterfront. They confided in him. They were there to entertain the sailors who came into the bar for refreshments. That bar was a beehive of dancing bodies, bawdy music and the sound of breaking glass. He didn’t feel the need to step inside. The ladies still offered to show him their wares. He almost honored that offer of an afternoon diversion or short excursion. It could have been a time of relaxation, exploration, even high expectations.
He decided to find his train and go back into the city’s heart for a night of rekindling an old friendship, then rest and recuperation. He got off the train at Ueno Station and proceeded to his hotel on foot. It was only a short distance away. The city was quieting down now. He decided to walk instead of taking a Pedi Cab. It had been a memorable day in Tokyo for this lone, traveling flaneur. The night held even more promise.