i tend to zoo- or anthropomorphise in order to understand or remember
the house that looks like the face of a bear
the rock that looks like a turtle
the way the public transport of any settlement, or indeed any sort of flow of movement in and out of a core, – be it of a huge metropolis or tiny village – is organomorphic in how it resembles lungs.
leaving your room in the morning, you walk up an improbable alleyway that you would not stumble upon when walking down the street unless you knew which way to turn.
Leaving the alleyway to enter the road, leaving the road to enter the street, leaving the street to enter the highway and letting the highway carry you to the centre are all movements that happen through an exhalation of sorts. A suction that inevitably brings you to the core of the settlement unless you make a maneuver or two.
Knowing when to leave the highway to enter the road, knowing when to leave the road to enter the street, knowing when to leave the street to enter the alleyway, knowing which door to enter and at last which bunk in the dormitory to occupy requires either conscious effort if you want your head to end up on a particular pillow, or a fully random set of exits and turns that will bring you to one of billions of new starting points for the following exhalation.
Exiting the alveoli to end up flown out through the mouth into the open air requires little effort. Entering a particular alveolus borders the impossible in how much navigational capacity if required to make the journey without any false turns.
I feel this in Tokyo more than anywhere else I've been to until know.
The pulmonary metaphor doesn't end in describing the social choreography as a fractal system.
Seeing the movement of people through the city as movement of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the lungs also communicates varying degrees of lightness in how everything is carried.
Everything works in Tokyo. Once you know how everything works, drawing a pathway to your home alveolus can become light, effortless.
Knowing how everything works could take a lifetime.
To keep conscious of how everything works within the smallest units of time can take a lot of effort to keep up with.
Likewise although you may learn everything you need to learn about breathing within a few seconds after being born, new experiences years later might bring you new insight into an automated practice.
Breathing is not effortless.
I saw coffee being sold as plastic cups filled with ice-cubes in a freezer tub.
I held my breath and closed my eyes to see if they were still there. They are here to stay. I might have one latter.