Contrasting Worlds

This article originally appeared in the Metro Plus edition of the Hindu

It is night when I get into Tokyo from the airport. I reel at the sight of giant-sized billboards and bright neon lights that greet me when I step out of the Shinjuku subway station. “When in Tokyo, take time to stand on the street and absorb the sights and sounds around you,” is my husband’s attempt at being helpful when he sees my baffled expression.

A wave of black-suited men crosses the street, most murmuring on their cell phones. When motorbikes come to a grinding halt in front of us at pedestrian crossing, my daughters gape at the riders — teenagers with coloured punk hairstyles, wearing torn leather jackets and dangling earrings and hard rock music blaring from their earpieces.

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