Saturday, April 02, 2005

Japan #15 - Metropolis1

(At the end of August/beginning of September 2004 I took a pleasure trip to Japan. I meant to have all the blog postings done in the first week, I'm now on track to have it done within 90 days months of the trip.)

I was not feeling too chipper in the morning in Yokohama, yet what was to follow was probably one of the most concentrated days of my life: the last full day in Japan. Illogically, we only allotted one day for Tokyo; yet, I don't know if I would have enjoyed it as thoroughly were it spread out over two or three days. This day was like a 'day in the life' type experience, one only a casual traveler can have because everyone else has too much time available to try and cram a weeks worth of experiences into eighteen hours.

Speaking of illogical, before we left Yokohama, which is every bit as big a piece of concrete as you're going to find, I came upon a ten by ten foot area at the base of an apartment building that someone had turned into a rice bog. Why? Surely that tiny bog isn't going to put out that much of a crop. I'd hate to think that import duties are so stiff that people feel they have to cultivate every piece of exposed earth in the country. (Something else of mild interest, in my walk around the building was a school that had various extracurricular classes convened on a Saturday morning; band practice and such. I guess it happens at American schools as well, I mean, not counting 'Saturday school').

Moving on, we hopped a short train to our stop and it was a this point that I noticed that the Tokyo JR train system isn't the most difficult thing to follow. I was kind'a afraid after hearing some horror stories from non-natives, but a little pattern recognition will carry you a long way on that bad boy. We dropped of our bags at the hotel and we were off, first stop: Shibuya (a fancy shopping district, though it seemed every shopping district we went to was at least a little fancy).

I'm not sure which day this picture was taken, since I remember it being this active all the time.


A photo cannot do justice to many places and Shibuya is certainly one of those.

A big ol' political truck where I believe the speaker is making a case that the Tojo-ites deserve another chance. An example of the ever popular 'naked boys peeing' statues can be seen on the left.

A street in Shibuya.

I think the outfits the girls up front are wearing get a bad rap.

On the right is one of the three known pachinko parlors...within fifty meters of me.

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