Saturday, 3 August 2013

Day 222: A future female PM?

Day 222 (16 Jul) Tuesday. Richie Benaud Day (2 fer's a cricket joke). But seriously, I hit the hustings proper today. One MP whose career I have been following for a few years is Councillor Ren Ho, a member and part of the leadership group of the Minshuto, the Democratic Party of Japan. At the time of her election, she was identified as a future national leader...she is not up for election today, but is travelling all over the country supporting DPJ candidates. 

Reading, at 6.12am
But this morning at 6.12, I was putting together some notes for an article I've been asked to submit to The Conversation and I'm booked to chat with Rebecca Levingston tomorrow night on 612ABC. I'll be working hard to get something of interest up to talk about. 

With only a few weekdays in Tokyo and too many public holidays, I'll be a bit squeezed for time at one of my must-visit places in Tokyo, the National Parliamentary trip is complete without it. Today is one such day, but I'm also acutely aware that I need to plan to leave in time to reach a train station to the northwest of Tokyo where Ren Ho will be speaking. It's a bit of an adventure really. 

A library find
I first visited the library as part of my postgraduate studies back in 1988 and it became my 'workplace' almost everyday while I did my research on postwar Australia-Japan relations. It still had a card catalogue in those days and while electronic catalogues and databases have given us quite different way to approach our studies, I maintain that I wouldn't have found what turned out to be a critical document for my research if I'd been typing in keywords to a search engine. It was sheer luck and coincidence I think that I came across the catalogue card for that document in a drawer... 

A reminder to vote,
on the train
It is, as usual, a most interesting and fruitful day at the library. I generally look to update my resources on a range of issues including Australia-Japan relations, whaling, the progress of the Yamba Dam, general election material and anything else I might be working on. Found some terrific colour reproductions of Ukiyoe pictures of whaling in the 18th and 19th centuries. They'll come in handy. 

I decide that I need to head off to the outer 'burbs around 4.00 to reach the Urawa train station by 5.15. There are a couple of nearby options if I miss out there...
Outside Dona, at 6.12pm

I get there in plenty of time and get to listen and photograph the event (about which, more on the 'other' blog soon). On the way back at a Akabane, I chance upon some more candidates, this time for the Greens and at 6.12pm, I happen to be outside a pasta restaurant named after me (^.^)'. A spruiker for a hair salon offers me a haircut, asking me do I colour my hair myself...hehe, er, no. Smooth talkers everywhere, in all languages...

Jinko has suggested that it is possible to catch a bus from Akabane to just outside our place in Itabashi...heck why not, I'm up for an adventure...

I make it back. It's been day one of an exciting few days coming up as I close in on all the candidates as Sunday approaches. 

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