Saturday, December 31, 2011

I think I'm turning Japanese - Part 1

Hello hello!!
I'm writing from my teeny tiny hotel room in Shibuya, Tokyo and boy it is COLD. But being the (overly) prepared person that I am I've got it covered with fleece-lined leggings. Might I suggest you get yourself a pair of these bad boys the second winter hits? These things work miracles - pretty sure I could walk on water in them (and still be warm I bet!).

And to make the whole experience a little more authentic, we've just had an earthquake. Obviously nothing to severe if I'm still sitting at a desk blogging... but still bizarre none the less. It took me a good minute to 1) realise we didn't have a vibrating bed and 2) wake Owen up to ask if this was in fact an earthquake he was sleeping through.

Earthquake aside we are having so much fun! I'll admit I had a minor freakout when we first landed because I forgot how damn hard it can be to communicate here. We speak zero Japanese bar the very simple thank yous and yes and there really aren't a lot of English signs (not that there should be, we are in Japan after all)... so safe to say we've looked pretty stupid on a number of occasions including being told to move by Shinto priests because we were in the way of their religion procession. But that is half the fun of travelling right? Or so I'm going to keep telling myself.

We've walked all over the place and have eaten more crepes and even more okonomiyaki than I'm willing to admit. My current theory is they cancel each other out. Please don't correct me, I simply don't want to know.

 The three steps to okonomiyaki:
Step 1 - stare longingly at hot plate
Step 2: push food around with chopsticks in an attempt to look useful
Step 3: eat said food before it is finished to annoy your dining companion. Enjoy!

Kidding! He actually cooked mine for me so I shouldn't be such an ungrateful git. He's proving to be my near-perfect travelling companion... dealing with my extreme nervousness and he's tagging along for some shopping and even encouraging me to buy things. Winner!

We've hit up lots of different suburbs and while a lot of stuff is closed over this time of year, we haven't really been bothered by it. There is always something to see and do - it is Tokyo after all. And I'm not willing to disclose just how much yen we've spent on videos games except to say... it's a lot.

 Exhibit A: Emma's idea of fun...driving along Rainbow Road. Exhibit B: Owen's idea of fun... punching a panda.
Last night being NYE we had a nice dinner (drinking Japanese cocktails... and Spanish wine... ticks for authenticity!) and loitered around the Shibuya crossing with just a few (thousand) other drunks. When the clock struck 12 everyone waited patiently (if patient means loud and involves throwing glow sticks) for the lights to change so everyone could surge onto the crossing and wish each other a happy new year. It was kind of similar to being in a sweaty moshpit at BDO but with less nakedness due to the single digit temperature (not to say there was none..) and a lot more good will. And today the city is pretty quiet so we did a little bit of shopping and someone else is busy sleeping.

You can bet I'm busy tracking down every Kit Kat flavour and trying every novelty food/drink I can get my hands on. But that my friends is a post for another day!

Anywayyyy enough yabbering on. I'm going to get me some deliciously cheap noodles for lunch (heart vending machine noodle houses, so much less fuss). And here is my unashamed photo dump of Shibuya/Yoyogi Park/Harajuku - half iPhone, half new camera (thanks mama and papa - birthday present! 26 years young!). Happy New Year! And sayonara!


serendipity and kate said...

I love the holiday blogging. Especially this line:

"he's tagging along for some shopping and even encouraging me to buy things"

I like this A LOT!

kelly said...

agree with serendipity, who doesn't love a boy who says "buy it!"
gosh looks like you're having so much fun, jealous to the max. I'm hoping to hit tokyo this year too. what a great start to 2012 for you!!

Emmie Rae said...

eeeee amazing! goddamn i miss that country! and sakura matcha latte kitkat? the best! xxx

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