A throwback ‘Ohayo’ from Tokyo! <3
It’s been a week and a half since we returned home from the big smoke and already we are longing to be back there again. I can’t tell you how much I love Tokyo! It’s so busy and crazy and energetic; you can’t help but get swept up the madness.
Last time I wrote we had just arrived in Shibuya and I was smashing down a Starbucks reading to begin some adventuring. We finished school on the Friday and took the bus to Oita Aiport that night, arriving at Narita just after 10PM. Got to the hostel at Shibuya around 00:30 and stayed up until the very wee hours eating and drinking in a local late opening restaurant. I have to say I dig the hostels in Japan. Most follow the capsule vibe and have pull across curtains which is great for some extra privacy. They also have towels, sockets for your chargers and lockers for your important stuff. Then there is the shower… Oh the shower… I think I died and went to heaven, I swear.
I have to admit AP4 showers are a little lacklustre however I was under the impression prior to coming to Japan that we had communal bathrooms, so I was eternally grateful to find one in my room and will not complain about it. Saying that, it is admittedly a bit rubbish. The bath (like everything in Japan) is tiny, and also weirdly deep so it feels like you are clambering into a trench when you get in. The water spray of the shower itself could be best described as going ‘out’ rather than ‘down’, and it’s practically an art form to be able to arrange the taps so not to boil your skin from your bones. This mental test does wake me up first thing however and I don’t need to share the experience with other people from my floor, a fact that I count my blessings for every morning. Anyways, long story just as long, I was very excited to find a proper power-shower in the hostel lol (easily pleased hey?)
I digress.. where was I? Oh yes. So we were super happy with the hostel and it was only a 15 minute walk from downtown Shibuya and great coffee (and not Starbucks thank god). I spent Saturday morning down at the Tsukiji Fish market which was fantastically busy and exciting!. There was so much delicious food to eat and crazy seafood to look at while you try to keep out of the merchants way.
Some delicious treats at the market!
After the fish market, I went to the royal palace and then went in search for something to eat. After a little walk, I saw a queue coming out of a restaurant and (being British and innately obsessed with queuing), I joined it. The difficulty was that when I got to the front of the queue, you had to pay before you went in and the pictureless menu was only in Japanese. Thankfully, I was saved as someone walked passed the door with a tray so I was able to point to his bowl and gesture that I would have the same. Still unsure what I ordered, I was ushered to a kitchen area and given the most enormous plate of noodles I had ever seen, a bowl of spicy looking sauce and an egg. Turns out I had ended up in a stand up noodle bar which was famous in the area. There aren’t any seats so you just shuffle into a spare space at the bar and slurp to your hearts content. It was delicious and once I had a very full stomach and messy shirt, it was time to get on my way.
The slurp-ier you are, the better it is!
Met up with the gang again that evening for dinner and cocktails in Roppongi, followed by a cheeky 3am icecream on the way home. The next day I was up early and happened upon an awesome coffee shop in the backstreets of Shibuya. Funnily enough I ran into three Melburnians in there; I don’t know how we do it, it’s like we have a sixth sense for good espresso no matter where we are. Went to visit the Meji Shrine and walked up to Harajuku for an afternoon of delicious snacks and crazy clothes shopping. Favourite purchase has to be the psychedelic fluro dinosaur and laser-eyed cat t-shirt. Much Japan.
Met the guys again later that afternoon and we made the long weary trip back to Narita airport, before back home to Beppu. Once home, we were officially in finals week so there was no more putting off the work for holidays. Most of our group reports were due and exams were dotted over the last few days of the quarter so the last week has been spent holed up on level two for some desperate cramming. Since most of the house is down there together, there was lots of impromptu late night trips for coffee and icecream and plenty of sleep deprived banter to keep us going through the night!
Anyways, I’ll leave it here. Best get back to studying I guess 😛
Off to Osaka at next week so I will check in again after the weekend. Until then, wish me luck with finals; providing I can stay awake, all should hopefully go okay (caffeine gods willing).
Have a great weekend!