shin yokohama

❝I love her, and that’s the beginning and end of everything.❞

❝You are the finest, loveliest, tenderest, and most beautiful person I have ever known—and even that is an understatement.❞
‣ F. Scott Fitzgerald about his wife Zelda


fumiesuguri: With the completion of Japanese Nationals, Asada-senshu did not make it onto the world team. About whether or not to continue. A few years ago, when Asada-senshu resumed her competitive career, we had a long talk at the Shin-Yokohama rink. I advised her not to continue. The reason for that is because I don’t want her to have the same painful memories as I did.

When I look back on it now, 2006 was my competitive peak. Still, no matter how painful it was, I have no regrets for continuing. Mentally, physically, spiritually, it was all a challenge. Reevaluating my technique and working on conditioning. 

Being able to continue required working and learning about the company I work for. There is true value in pursuing something you love—such as understanding the true value of money. From 2006 to until I retired in 2014, I learned what skating really means. And now I get to coach. However, I faced so many heavy outside pressures and criticisms—being told all sorts of things from everywhere, I felt like I was going to break.

I didn’t want her to have to face that. But, in the end, she said, “But I want to keep going,” and I said, “In that case, I understand. If there’s anything I can do to help, please let me know whenever you need it,” and we parted.

The decision whether or not to continue is up to the person making decision, and not for those on the fringes to call into question. Just support them, earnestly. That’s what we should do. All athletes want it to round it off to that perfect, beautiful end, but only a very few actually achieve it.

Even the big name senpais from my company, Nakata Hidetoshi-san and Tamesue Dai-san, they all have regrets. Ending with good results isn’t the only thing. It’s about the attitude and the way you live. Ganbare Mao-chan!!!”


Takanori Aiba

TAKANORI AIBA was born in 1953 in Yokohama, Japan. Studied Japanese traditional textiles and dyed clothing in Tokyo Zokei University. Built a first career as a freelance maze illustrator since 1978. His maze works were serialized in “POPYE”, Japanese fashion magazine for 10 years. Founded his own company, “Graphics and Designing Inc.”, in 1981. Expand a range of his career to a concept maker and art director for architectural spaces. Total production of “Shin Yokohama Chinese Noodle Museum”, “Muse Du Petit Prince De Saint Exupery A Hakone”, “NINJA AKASAKA” were one of his major works.

Since, 2003, He put his mind to create three dimensional art works which combines his knowledge and experience of both maze illustrator and architect. On September, 2010, He had a solo exhibition, “Adventures of the Eyes” at Kakiden Gallery, Tokyo Japan with his works.