The first time we hit Japan, old wolf Johnny Whitewalls, while I was bitching about this & that, murmured with a cheeky crack: Next year you’ll be back… Of course old wolves are normally right, and we had succumbed no matter what to the far east’s charm. This year we returned to the anual Mooneyes HRCS in Yokohama, but in our mind this was just an excuse. Bikes are ok, you all know now that! But Tokyo is way more than just the MoSt aMaZING MOTORCYCLES & MOTORCYCLE CoMiTeD pEoPLe in thE WORLD!@#$ Tokyo is simply the future. You get your ass on a plane and 16 hours later, you unfold into the next, lying beyond, furtherer of some non understandable and remote boundary.
As far as Motorcycle’s regard, this years biggest loss was the ban of the parking gathering during the HRCS by local authorities, so tragic for the event’s destiny. ∑´®†Couldn’t the organization work around this?!??!?!∑´®† Otherwise, we had an enlightning week surrounded by some of our best friends. This year, Vincent Prat & Jerome Alle from the Southsiders & KT Fender joined the bunch and as always made the pack even more fun. Will never forget visiting with Ola and the viking lads some of the most iconic fellow bike preachers in the world. Escorted by the fierce but lovely Tadashi Kono San & Hiro San, we drooled over Tokyo’s finest workshops and private brand exquisite garment ateliers.
Its weird how in the West there is a consistent force exercised by large groups of interests aimed at eliminating the small family shop, its trades and crafts. Artisans are an endangered species and short term profits have taken the lead over common sense, destroying culture and the expertise gained after a millennial quest for perfection. In Japan meanwhile, you can witness a flourishing scene of makers. Their obsessive seek for quality and excellency is rewarded by the respect of the society and their peers. Thousands of small shops offer their handmade productions to the public, obviously at higher prices than their industrial competitors, but we were happy to see that people happily payed this premium for this personalization, sustainability and higher quality. Maybe it is in the mix between the old traditional societal system and the new and avant-garde mindset spiced with the turbulence of Japans recent history what has made this possible. I don’t really know why this happens, but I like it and wish we could follow this path over here.
In Tokyo, sensory overload and mental shutdown is your biggest enemy and only after you return to the old continent you realize of the transcendence of the trip. Remember vividly, landing straight from Tokyo in Munich, on a rare sunny december morning, and while in the subway had a weird feeling of entering the already gone, a vintage subway full of vintage people!@# The menacing gargoyles vigilantes, staring from the skies at the busy crowds in Marienplatz didn’t help either…
So many thanks to everybody that helped and almost had to baby us with our Godzilla like manners and lack of orientation!!@#
Hasta la vista Tokyo
See you next year Dirty White Walls
All photos by KT Fender
You can view Vincent Prat’s photographic gallery with more than 500 pics here: http://www.wheels-and-waves.com/transfert/jpn/jpn2014/index.html
El Solitario’s trip in 2013 here : http://elsolitariomc.com/2013/12/el-solitario-nippon-assault