Photojournalist Tsuneko Sasamoto is 98

Super Granny Series #1

Japanese people have one of the world’s longest life-spans, with an average age of 86 for women and 79 for men in recent years. So there seem to be many energetic seniors.   Tsuneko Sasamoto is one of them.   She, at 98 years old, is still an active photojournalist.   Her autobiography was published two years ago.   In a bookstore, many books written by older authors are lined up, such as the book by an author living in Hawaii who is 104(@_@)   Since I hope to live long,  I bought those books…. correction, I borrowed the books from a library.

The Japan Daily Press provides more details about Tsuneko Sasamoto  She became the first female photojournalist in Japan.   She began her professional career at age 27,  but she had to switch jobs in mid-career.   After a 20- year break,  she got back to photography at age 71 and she has continued her work until now.   Last year she flew to Paris on business.   Wow!

According to the book, I think her keys to longevity are having curiosity,  keeping her brain active, ( She keeps on studying English)  physical activity, (She performs calisthenics every morning.   She can bend forward and put hands on the floor)  living a regular life,  eating in moderation and drinking wine every evening.

This is the video promoting her book.   In 2011,  she didn’t look 97.  She has good taste in clothes and a dignified elegance.

Dance Party Night

The last posting was about belly dance.  I learn flamenco too.  My flamenco teacher told me to go and see a dance party and gave me the ticket.   However it was not a dance in disco or nightclub.  It was a ballroom dance.  I’d never seen it except for TV.  I was just curious what it was like.

When I entered the party room,  oh dear!  there were many elderly people.   People in their 60s and 70s? created a peculiar atmosphere.  Why is a ballroom dance popular in elderly people in Japan?   Is it the same situation in overseas?   Pre-retiree men may be busy at work.   How about young women?   It must be tough to dance with an old man.   Senior adults are vigorous.   They looked very happy.  They held up their heads and stepped well to the music.   Women dressed in their flashy dresses.  Men dressed in … How should I say…

At this point enter SOUNDCLOUD!  Please look at the picture while listening.

The chairs were placed along the walls.   While sitting quietly, I was asked to dance by various men.    I politely refused each time.  I was embarrassed.   They must have looked quizzically at me.   I should have worn jeans, not a long skirt.   When I regretted it,  a younger good-looking man came up and said, “Would you like to dance?”  “I can’t dance.  I’m just looking.” “Don’t worry. It’s all right.”  He took my hand and led to the center of the hall.   “First, move sideways.  That’s it!  You’re doing great. ” “Then, move back and forth.  Now you’ve got it!”  I was able to move naturally with him.  He must be a teacher.   After music ended, he brought me back to the seat.   “Wow!  he is like a prince!  Then am I a princess?”   What an old princess!  But the image in my mind was like this. lol

If I can always dance with a handsome man like him, I will learn a ballroom dance.   But I ‘d like to decline the dance with complete strangers.  It would make me sick to be my hand and back held.  ( In Japan, it’s not the custom to kiss and hug.  There is no physical contact even in family)  I think a ballroom dance itself is attractive though.  I reaffirmed a solo dance is the best for me.   After dancing, I went home right away.  But I guess I should have asked his school name…

That night I recommended my husband learning a ballroom dance after retirement.   He said “I don’t want to dance with an old woman.”   No problem!  You’ll be an old man by that time.