Friday, March 24, 2006
Stepping out of the Train Station I was a bit disoriented. I exited the station at the wrong side, but luckily it was quite a boon. A quick walk away and I was at Meiji Jingu. I was impressed by the duality of this area. In front of me was a Torii (the giant gate thing) and behind me was a bustling city.
Up a long and windy stone paved path with some interesting pit stops . . .
I arrived at a beautiful sight.
I even got someone to take a picture of me there:
It started raining so I headed out but not before I got to see a clensing water thinger. You're supposed to wash your hands, and take a sip of the water to clense your body and spirit before entering the shrine. I exited the shrine park area and was quite lost. The next hour I spent walking around in a light drizzle but managed to find my way back to the train station, but not before walking past this shop:
It was getting late and I was getting tired so I headed back to the hotel. To get from the train station to the street where the hotel is, you have to go over a pedestrian bridge, which gave me quite the view of the city.
I took a quick shower to rejuvinate myself and headed into Shibuya, the big shopping district commercial district in Tokyo. (Ginza is more expensive and sheek, I didn't go there, except by accident . . .)
I ended up going back to Harajuku on Sunday and saw some /interesting/ sights . . . I'll get to that story eventually . . .
Monday, March 20, 2006
I wonder where it was I ended up Friday night. . . I think this is the place:
http://wikitravel.org/en/Tokyo, "Tokyo's wildest nightlife and red-light district"
With Friday night spent, I awoke tired around 9am Saturday morning. I started the day off with a shower. Its pretty cool how the mirror in the bathroom has a built in heater so that it doesn't entirely fog up when you use the shower.
Then came the photography.
The shots you see from way up high, of the Tokyo skyline? That was the view from my room. I have to find some linux software that will help me create a panorama of the pics I took.
Before I started on my http://wikitravel.org/en/One_day_in_Tokyo I wanted to wake up a bit so I took a walk and saw these high powered scooters ready and waiting for a customer to order some pizza.
Being the geek that I am, I first headed to http://wikitravel.org/en/Tokyo/Akihabara, the tech/geek mega center of Tokyo.
What to my wondering eye do I see as soon as I exit the station? Why a crazy j-pop concert going on, complete with 20 and 30-somethings dancing along, complete with hand motions to a girl looking to be 14.
That was quite a hoot. Moving past that I scouted out the area. For those of you who have been to Nova in Jhongli: Take Nova, double it, then copy it 20 times over and place the buildings one next to another. For those of you without the NOVA experience . . . First: Imagine an eight story building, each floor hosing numerous tech stores that stock everything from cameras to computers to voltage meters to mouse pads with boobs. Now. Take that building and well lay variatious of it out across a 10 square block area. After this, scale outwards, as you exit the main area, the only thing that changes is the buildings get smaller and smaller. Oh yah, if you're very sensitive to porn, don't go to the basement of any of these buildings. Japan while having a very conservative exterior looks to be a voracious center for pent up sexual exitement.
I tried to take a photo with a ninja, but he just wouldn't have it.
But the Eva's did allow me the opportunity for a photo:
Next stop on the tour (I didn't really follow any order, just used it as a basis for where to go) was http://wikitravel.org/en/Tokyo/Harajuku. . .
STAY TUNED FOR THE NEXT EXCITING ADVENTURE OF JOE-GOES-CRAAAZEEE-IN-JAPAN.
Saturday, March 18, 2006
Friday, March 17, 2006
First things first: Get to Tokyo. Narita airport is 70km from Tokyo. To get in you have to take a train or a bus. I missed the last train and bus to the hotel so I took a bus somewhere in Tokyo. I walked around for a while, saw bright lights and Japanese people but couldn't find a cash station/ATM that would take any of my three cards. I continued walking around and was offered hookers more times in one hour than in my entire life (3 times). Its amazing how many places you can go to pay to have a girl sit with you while you drink. Yah, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. If were to pay for a woman's presence, there better be more than just sitting involved. ;-) They have people on the streets walking So there was not much I could do for the night. By a quarter to one I was tired and decided to find my way to the hotel.
I tried to do some mobile blogging via my new cell phone and n770, but blogger.com failed me. So I just uploaded the file now with mozilla (manaos) on the n770.
The hotel I'm staying at is fabulous. Apparently its the same place where Bill Murry stayed in "Lost in Translation." The cab ride here was 2500 Yen, aka $25
I'm here until Monday night, I have a vague idea of what I'm going to do for the rest of the weekend, but I know one thing for sure. This is going to be an Adventure!
I just uploaded some new photos of Taiwan and at some point tonight the Tokyo photos will finish uploading.
Thursday, March 16, 2006
Saturday, March 4, 2006
These were the kids we made friends with. They were so cute. They'd walk just out of talking range and watch us and we traveled their little town-ish area. Then, when we were on our way back they came closer and quite bashfully offered us a gift of a chocolate bar!
Sometime when I go back there again (I will, it was quite nice there) I'll bring something for them and see if I can find them, I think we saw where they lived.