so says science fiction writer Charlie Stross, of Japan. His essay on traveling there was a great read. Intro goes:
It’s not the shiny future of jet packs and food pills â€” oh no, that’s not what Japan is about. Nevertheless, they’ve got it and they’re living in it, damn them. They’ve got express trains that run on time and accelerate so fast they push you back into your seat like an airliner on take-off. They’ve got skyscrapers with running lights, looming out of the sodium-lit evening haze â€” a skyline just like the famous nighttime scene from Blade Runner except for the shortage of giant pyramids (and they’re building one of those out in Tokyo bay). And they shave their cats.
In the future we will all have shaved cats. And six story high pornography boutiques that sell Hello Kitty! novelty toys on the ground floor. And 200mph super-express trains blasting between arcologies through a landscape scorched by the waste heat of a hundred million air conditioning units. And beer vending machines on street corners. And skyscrapers cheek-by-jowl with temples that are modern reconstructions of buildings dating back to the eighth century (said reconstructions only slightly older than the Christopher Wren iteration of St Paul’s Cathedral).
Welcome to Japan …
Preach it, brother: I was there. Ambitious Japan!