Last Saturday, Osamu Akimoto (秋本 治), one of the most famous manga artists in Japan had an announcement which really surprised me: from this month, his creation "Kochira Katsushika-ku Kameari Koen-mae Hashutsujo" (こちら葛飾区亀有公園前派出所) will stop being published in the weekly magazine "Shukan Shonen Janpu" (週刊少年ジャンプ) or simply "Jump" after exactly 40 years. The blog's readers perhaps remember that I had mentioned this manga and its lead character three years ago since it is the only comic I've been reading constantly since I came to Japan. Luckily, the 200 tankobon (単行本) albums with the "Kochikame" stories will still be around which means that there is enough reading material for several years but I find it very hard to believe that Ryo-san (with whom I'm in the picture) and his gang will not get involved in new adventures. I hope Akimoto sensei will reconsider but for now, one piece of my personal history in Japan is over and this makes me sad.
(For a bigger version of this picture both in color and black and white, check my "Japan Arekore" set on Flickr)