I’m married. Today’s our five-year wedding anniversary. We can’t afford to go on vacations very often, so when they’re possible, we try to make the most of them.*
A few years before getting married, we saved up and went to Japan for two weeks. The plan was, with our limited budget, to simply walk around, see a couple of major cities…with a mandatory pilgrimage to Tsukuba Circuit before leaving. I was on vacation, so didn’t bring my SLR. Just an iPhone for photos, thankyouverymuch.
I’ve said this before and will continue to until proven otherwise: either interesting vehicles find me or I find them.
What are the odds of seeing a Mitsuoka Type-F driving by (old) Harajuku Station in Tokyo, on a perfect day, moments after we’d found our way to street level? Me instantly recognizing it. Walking quickly after it. Crossing the street—and getting 2.5 iPhone photos of it.
In the moment, and even today, it’s not the car I remember so much.
It’s the driver, with his polka dot seat covers, club hat, striped shirt, casual stance…and his Kōreisha mark (高齢者マーク) stickers — only available to drivers aged 75 and older.
Whoever he was, I thought he must have been one of the coolest people in Harajuku that day, just living his life and out for a drive.
When life gets tough, or when I aspire to consider so-called “life goals”, my thoughts often drift over to these images as a sort of proof to myself that the good life as I see it is out there (and possibly even attainable.)
It drove by me once—so it could happen again.
I do, however, make one simple but important change in my daydreams: my wife is sitting in the passenger seat, wearing a blue polkadot dress. – Michael Banovsky
*This includes a shorter Weekend Edition for you so that I’m not at the computer all day.