Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Silvery World on the Odakyu Line

EMU Odakyu 1000 series passes through Chitose-Funabashi Station in a snowstorm
It is mid-winter in Japan. The daytime maximum temperature is lower than 10 degrees Celsius in Tokyo. In this season, the mountains block the cold, wet wind blowing from the northwest, which causes heavy snow to fall on the Japan Sea side. Then, only dry air comes to the Pacific side, such as the Tokyo metropolitan area.

However, once a low-pressure system as strong as a typhoon approaches the Pacific side, the Tokyo metropolitan area also experiences heavy snowfall. We call that a "bomb cyclone". On Monday, January 14th, a bomb cyclone hit Tokyo. The snow caused the delay of many train services. Fortunately, most of the offices in Tokyo were closed for the holiday. You have to be thankful for small mercies.

I had an errand to run, and had to go to Shinjuku on that day. While waiting for a local train on the platform of my nearest station on the Odakyu Line, I saw a heavily snow-crusted express train, EMU 1000 series, passing right in front of me (see the top photo). Great!

After boarding a local train, I saw a thick blanket of snow through a train window. There was snow as far as the eye could see. It was out-of-the-ordinary and exotic. We call that "gin-sekai (the silvery world)" in Japanese.

Finally, the train reached Shinjuku Terminal 20 minutes late. Although the train was delayed a bit, I could still make my appointment. Thanks, the Odakyu Line.

"Snow-crusted" EMU, Oakyu 2000 series arrives at Shinjuku Terminal