Tomorrow I head off to Japan for two weeks with my gorgeous wife Victoria Buckley and lovely four-month old daughter Leda. I lived in Japan 1991-94, and while I returned regularly for a while, I haven’t been there for over six years now. It will be great to get back and see what’s changed, particularly on the social and technological fronts. Japanese social and business structures have been shifting rapidly since the Japanese bubble burst in the early 1990s, yet much of the old systems still remain. When I lived in Tokyo, among other roles I was Tokyo Bureau Chief for Thomson Financial, where we were reporting on the early phases of the transition that is still under way. Much has unravelled, and there is far more to go. The next decades of Japanese history will be fascinating. I am also very much looking forward to reviving my Japanese language. I devoted much of my energy in the time I was there to studying Japanese, and I found real delight in the magic of the language. However it has gone pretty rusty, especially my reading, so hopefully I can bring it back to business-level standards, though I suspect that will take a little more than a two week holiday.
Don’t expect any blog posts while I’m away (unless I get massively inspired), but I will report on my impressions when I’m back. I have been frustrated through most of this year as I’ve attempted to capture on this blog a little of what I’m seeing and thinking about. For me, client work ultimately takes priority, and I have had a very intense schedule for the last few months particularly. There has been much I wanted to write in this blog but never got to. I still have a backlog of a dozen posts or so on media coverage, speaking gigs etc. which I wanted to comment on and have not yet managed. I definitely want to pick up the frequency of my blog posts next year – it is a high priority for me. But it does depend on what other pressing things I have on my plate. No doubt 2007 will be an exciting year – I’m looking forward to it… after a good break. Have a fabulous new year, and best wishes for 2007!