Bando Skateboard Shop, Nagano, Japan

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I used to walk past this particular skateboard shop all the time when I lived in Nagano. It was never open any time I happened to be passing by. I would have loved to go in and checked their selection, possibly buy a setup. I never saw a lot of skateboarders in Nagano, nor knew of any skateparks in my time there. These pictures I have of the shop were taken in February 2019. I was in town to retrieve some stuff before I made my move back to Korea. Things didn’t go well while I lived in Japan. I felt increasingly isolated, the longer I lived there. I knew a few people, but overall I felt disconnected living in Japan. On the plus side, I took many trips to rural Japan on my weekends to find haikyo.  Much like the rest of Japan, there are many unused buildings in Nagano City. I found lots on my daily treks around the city, and much like the skate shop, I couldn’t find a way in. As I poked my head around the perimeter of the shop, I was about to find boxes of used boards, some with trucks still fasted on. Inside, the walls were lined with brand new boards, trucks, and wheels.  This is one of the few abandonments I have explored where I had an emotional connection to the artifacts.  I was a skateboarder myself growing up, not a good one, but still, I connected with the culture and lifestyle. It pained me to see all this stuff go to waste.IMG_1898IMG_1895IMG_1894IMG_1892IMG_1890

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