What I love most about the new year is all the possibilities it brings. It seems like a new beginning, a time of rebirth, a needed re-invigoration, a renaissance of the self. With each step forward we make into the future, pivotal moments of our past remain with us, strumming along, reminding us of the journeys we’ve experienced, both good and bad, and the person we’ve evolved into. 2012, like all the years that preceded it, was filled amazing memories and unexpected losses but I have learned to embrace them because they have come to define who I am.
In the photographs below, I humbly share some of the my favourite memories of 2012.
I was chasing the sunset when I stumbled across this stunning image in Cambodia. It’s almost poetic that the waters part in quiet reverence as these two young monks silently walk across the sandy beach of Independence Bay, Sihanoukville.
Blue winter skies are a rarity during Toyama’s usually long grey winters. This was one of the last times I would walk to Kaiyo High School. A couple months later it closed and joined with my current workplace. I have many fond memories here that would linger on for a lifetime.
March represented of the one year anniversary of the devastating Tokohu Earthquake and Tsunami. Overwhelmed by the sadness that still echoed in the silence, I decided to take a quiet escape to Tokyo. It was first time I had seen the famed Sensoji Temple. It had been well worth the long wait. It has easily become one of my favourite places in Japan.
My favourite picture of 2012. Spring in Japan means one word, hanami (花見) or cherry blossom viewing. After a long day at work, I walked almost the entire length of Matsukawa River in Toyama City with my friend. The beautiful ceiling of soft pink created a real life fairy tale I will never forget.
I met my friend, Sheila, and her twin sister, Brigid in Kanazawa, a charming city in Ishikawa. As I waited for them at the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art I decided to take a walk at one of the nearby side streets. I instantly became it overwhelmed . This was the place I had walked hand-in-hand with someone. On this day, I walked alone.
I grew up with roses. They were ever present in my front yard and back yard, vases and every nook and cranny. My grandmother had the Midas Touch when it came to roses.
I was having my friends, Aisha, Avernel, Chante and Chuma for dinner and I thought what better way to complement these ladies than with equally beautiful roses.
I paid less that $5.75 US for all these roses and it been the best $5.75US I have ever spent.
Even before July began, I knew my favourite picture would somehow involve my best friend, Chantal. She is the definition of a best friend- kind, brave, thoughtful and honest. She, and her eccentricities, made my year.
Mt. Tate, or more commonly known as Tateyama, is the irrefutable symbol of Toyama. It is one Japan’s most scared mountains, and rightfully so. After struggling to make it to the top, and several times of almost quitting, I persevered and made it to its holy summit.
Making it to the top, listening to a monk draped in a humble orange robe, chant in a language I barely understand and offer me a cleansing sip of osake (Japanese rice wine) was well worth the pain.
Japan’s Sports Day are known as Sports Festivals. It is nothing short of an extravaganza. Students practice for months for this one day and it was spectacular.
This was my last Sports Days and it was perfect.
The Yurikamome train line reminds me of the post modern Japan of my imagination. It is the personification of Japanese technology. This train, with no driver, runs on rubber wheels and snakes its way through towering skyscrapers and gives breathtaking views of the futuristic man made island of Odaiba.
I remember this clearly. It was the most perfect fall day Namerikawa had ever seen and it seemed everyone agreed with me. When I went on Facebook, all my friends living in Toyama had posted a picture.
The last day of 2012 I decided to take a trip to Kichijoji in Tokyo. This sunset was hauntingly beautiful. I love this picture because it wholly captures my year. The image is blurry but there is beauty to it. Much like 2012, it was not perfect but definitely left an impact.
Happy New Year, everyone! =)
Jenson recommends: Embracing 2013 and all the possibilities that come with it. I hope your year is filled with love, drenched in happiness and showered with many successes.
Have a look at: 2011- A Photo Blog