Btw, our neighbourhood (walking back from trash drop-off point) / the canals are quite full! Rainy season lasting long in Tsuchida, Okayama, Japan this year #monsoon
+ Cheap Houses Abound in Japan +
Notes & Riffs
So many vacant houses in Japan – millions! “Akiya” houses (free/cheap abandoned houses)Sometimes the owner is unknown – sometimes there are mysteries, sometimes houses have businesses attached, sometimes from way back in Meiji or Edo period! Sometimes someone died in odd circumstances within, sometimes just died.
Often very very messy, always requiring work, a lot sometimes.
Materials, labor and disposal can be really expensive in Japan so good to remember (speaking generally for anyone else who is reading along, not just you :-)). But hey, you are crafty right? Ha, its a whole other style of construction than “western” places. Tile roof! Foundations, plumbing, electric all different, Sometimes need boundary surveyed.
Importantly: Also, just cause you own a house, doesn’t mean you get a visa.
The situation in brief: The big cities are growing and the countryside is shrinking, fast. Young folks move away to the big city to work, old folks stay in country, working til they grow old and in Japan, folks grow very old. They die, the heirs are unknown or simply refuse the “inheritance” or they try to think they will go back and fix it up and enjoy the legacy but year after year paying property tax, they finally realize they won’t ever fix it up. Property/houses is generally/always a depreciating asset in Japan.
Anyway, the laws of changed significantly in the last year allowing local governments to appropriate more easily so there’s loads and loads of these available, does definitely take some hunting around though. Indeed! It’s definitely a scavenger hunt…
Arriving in India via Cochin (Kochi), Kerala, bound for an extended stay in an Ayurvedic clinic in Tripunitura, i snapped impressions along the way, capturing the washes of colours and shapes of everyday life. Also a trek into Fort Kochi on Remembrance Day to pay respects at a cenotaph (documented in a B&W photo essay and a Remembrance day podcast and a peace ramble video)
Snapped with a Lomo La Sardina (sardine can) camera with expired 35mm film, presented “as-is” with no edits and limited context, for your amusement and my memory.