Today dawned bright, crisp, and perfect for getting out for a hike. Unfortunatly I slept through that part. Having just finished a set of late shifts at work I needed sleep more than a hike so I found myself ready to go out about 10 AM, and given the short day length and the time it would take to get to the mountains it would have been too short of a hike to be worth the trip out and back. Everything is relative, of course, and if it were a case of sitting in a hotel room or going for the hike, I would have gone out even for a few minutes….. but Tokyo has innumerable ways of filling a day off, and so it was easier to decide to do that than justify nearly 6 hours of travelling for about a 2 hour hike.
Since the autumn colors have not yet left Tokyo but their days seem numbered, I opted to spend the day outside and started at Hama-rikyu Gardens. Formerly the grounds of a palace, it was given to the city in 1945 and was opened to the public in 1946. While there is no trace of the palace, there are several structures such as tea-houses and a shrine that either have been maintained or reconstructed using original drawings.
After a relaxed stroll through the gardens I spent the rest of the daylight enjoying the colors of the city as I meandered through Ginza and the city center, particularly the many gingko trees which seem to have just passed their peak in a blaze of yellow.