This was supposed to go up ages ago but the schedule in France/London and then the unexpected volcano which left us stranded in Europe means that this two part edition comes extra late.
Since we spoke last, managed to get tickets for the Eurostar and come back to London. Also managed to change our departure from Heathrow instead of Charles de Gaulle. Currenty waiting for seats for Saturday but have confirmed seats for next Wed. Europe has been great but really want to get back to Tokyo! Many challenges in running a business remotely - especially the meetings which I'm supposed to be in which don't quite work well with Skype.
Starting off with ramen wars - a ramen (noodle) place opened opposite this one and was serving a bowl of good ramen for 500 yen. This place only recently started to counter attack with a discounts dotted through the week starting at 330 yen per bowl.
Probably would have to live in the UK for longer but for my current short stay, I felt that it costs much cheaper to live in Japan. Some folks write horror stories about how apples in Japan costs 5000 yen each. If you want a 5000 yen apple then you can certainly find one but that's not what they cost normally.
Decent one room apartments in central Tokyo can cost from about 50000 yen per month. Will talk more about the cost of living separately. How did you feel about the price of food and travel when you visited Japan compared to where you live?
Lunch with Mio.
2nd floor kitchen/dining area which I haven't seen for weeks!
Moe slot machines as popular as ever.
Saber gets ready for a trip to Hong Kong.
The rest of the girls huddle up on the table while Saber and I take off.
Early morning sky in Tokyo.
On the way to the station.
Early morning Yamanote line - a few hours more and you wont be able to see the floor.
Love the stock photo on this "don't put a lighter in your suitcase" poster ^^;
Sweet lady at ANA.
Flight on time.
Picking up some goodies from the souvenir shop.
Wasabi flavored Kit Kat on the right, soy sauce flavored on the left.
Ended up forgetting some of this in the hotel fridge ToT.
Have been to some countries before that didn't have any currency exchange at the airport which is why I prefer to change some moolah at this end. Hong Kong however did have an exchange with better rates.
My pet hate - have to strip everything including belt and shoes before I step through that metal detector.
Great souvenir for folks - most certainly would have got one during my visiting days to Japan.
Caution drop! Never Leave. Keep watch.
Economy food to HK. Tasted better than the Business class meal to France.
This is Saber fresh out of hibernation with her hair all over the gaff.
Had a most most awesome time in Hong Kong where I made a load of new comrades. Decided to do something that they had never done before and Dollfie-jack Mong Kok. Thanks to all who came along! Will write about this in a separate post.
Some of the usual poo that I take on a business trip.
Saber puts her coat on ready for the trip back to Tokyo.
At Hong Kong International Airport.
Waiting for the flight back to Tokyo.
Back in Tokyo to be greeted on the train by Tanaka Mio-chans armpits in this Philadelphia ad.
Yamanote line quite empty at around 16:00-ish.
Its always nice to get out of Japan once in a while but there is an incredible feeling of comfort when arriving back in Tokyo.
Back in the office and first thing is first - clean up.
Discovered the taste of Jasmine Green Tea in Hong Kong. Tastes gorgeous but have not been able to find any in Tokyo so far ToT.
The first thing I want to eat when back in the land of the rising sun is some Sushi. Each piece here is about 120 yen. Sushi in your neck of the woods at reasonable cost or require saying goodbye to one of your limbs?
Wasn't able to eat ikura before living in Japan but am now able to eat spoonfuls of it ^^;
Not sure if you was aware but the Tokyo metropolis includes a load of islands - all can be reached by boat but only some can be reached by plane. If you fancy a break from the metropolis then you may want to give them a whirl.
More details about the islands at tokyo-islands.com.
Gunbuster, Yamato and Ikkitousen get the pachinko treatment. Speaking of Yamato - am looking forward to the live action movie due out this December.
Filming for the NHK documentary continues in Akihabara.
They only needed the top half of me in trooper so wore the chest armor over my standard civilian clothing ^^;
The documentary is due for worldwide broadcast on NHK World in May I think.
Never seen this anywhere before and only recently came across this at Narita Airport on the way to Hong Kong - picked it up immediately! Tis small and lightweight and cost about 2000 yen. You can find it after going through immigration at one of the souvenir shops - the one with a load of dry snacks at the front after the Akihabara store.
Out n about in our local shopping arcade.
Time for some dindins with the help of the usual colorful menus.
Onsen Tamago - half boiled egg. Absolutely yum.
Tsukemen is a dish where you dip yer noodles in the bowl of flavoured soup.
Some traditional Japanese sweets for dessert.
Ryomo looks after the restock of PG Tips - the tea bags that make an awesome cuppa tea. The Twinings on the side was used during the lack of PG Tips and tasted like watery mud.
The PG Tips tea bags are actually 4 sided triangles designed to let the leaves inside dance and jiggle about.
Usually warm up some milk in the microwave while the water boils. The tea bags go in the mug and brew for a while with piping hot water. Then more water is added topped off by milk. Sugar goes in just before the milk. Add sugar too early and the hot water doesn't flow through the tea bags properly.
The Ikea mug stores about 3 cups of tea which is not only a time saver, it helps keep tea hot for longer.
Work on the second floor at times in the evenings.
Sticking the futon out the window or balcony on a sunny day is the norm over here which helps to kill fleas and get rid of moisture. When bringing the futon back in, one would normally beat the futon to get rid of accumulated dust just like this guy below.
I saw some futon hanging out the window in France the other day and wondering if this is also a custom in your area too?
The last week before leaving for Europe was hectic. Tis also the end of the fiscal year where all the accounting wot not have to be submitted.
A doodle by a guest remains on the glassboard.
Samples all over the gaff.
Recently changed that Ikea lamp bulb again - is it just mine that doesn't last long? @.@
Some Erika Sendo goodies from Akihabara.
I think these are for trading cards but I use it for networking meetings as I always collect and hand out a load of business cards - the standard cases don't fit much.
Lovely box to store bits n bobs.
"Demae" is the word used to mean "take out" and this is how some places will deliver your food - by bike with a container dangling off the side.
A Week in Tokyo 53 part 2 soon ^^;