We arrived in Japan’s capital city of Tokyo in the dark of night. As Laura and I walked down the streets of this urban center on that first evening, we had not yet gotten a sense of its size and scale. It is said that Tokyo has the largest urban population of any place on earth, currently estimated at 38 million people. Much like the country of Japan itself, this is a city of ancient rituals dancing with the modern ways of today’s world.
We spent most of the next morning visiting the world-famous Tokyo fish market where we were awed by its sights, sounds, and sheer size. The cramped spaces, with business executed at a hectic pace, were impossible to ignore. The Japanese people are one of the largest fish consuming populations on the planet and most of their catch comes through this market which is unlike anywhere else in the world. The scale of this seemingly chaotic scene, where processing the harvest of our earth’s oceans plays out, is another example of ancient ways fitting into a modern society.