Photos from the week leading up to Anime Expo 2010. Lots of food and outdoor pics as I had a load of external meetings before the trip to LA - the last week before a trip overseas is always packed with meetings n wot not - the reason being so that I can settle a load of projects while I'm away.
This first snap taken at Roppongi. I'm not a fan of Roppongi as its a pain to get to and involves changing on the Oedo line. The Oedo line is notorious for having to travel 10 miles just to change trains and then another 20 miles below ground just to get to the platform - the elevators stop on a certain level and then you need to take another one.
Roppongi is home to many media and TV production studios however which is why I need to come here often of late.
Late evening at the local shopping arcade in Musashikoyama - tis the longest in Tokyo and seems to have more TV coverage of late.
Went for my annual health checkup and as with previous years, I took a load of pics - will upload in a separate post.
We made Culture:Japan on a shoestring budget meaning that we had to do a lot of the work ourselves that we would normally outsource. Here I'm doing the narration for the English version that will broadcast on the Animax Asia network across Asia. Definitely not used to narrating at all! But its nice to have the experience which will hopefully enable me to get better over time ^^;
Culture:Japan will be broadcast across the world and I'll make sure that everybody can watch it in some shape or form ^^;
At the MA studio in Roppongi checking out the sound and subtitles - I done the subs too ^^; And I left in some intentional spelling mistakes?! No wai!
Got some very good news re Culture:Japan - will post in a mo.
Running along the rooftops of Roppongi practicing some Mirrors Edge.
Evening in Roppongi.
Was the first time in years that I got lost - my (accidentally) jailbroken iPhone screwed up the 3G and had no access to the maps. Unlike easy-to-understand-addresses like in the US, Japanese addresses are number based.
So for example if my address ends in "5-6-24", it means that there is an area labeled "5" and within that area is another area labeled "6" and yep you guessed it - hunt for the area labeled "24" - I was walking around in circles!
Time for dindins at a ramen place.
Time to leave Roppongi and get back to base.
Exploring the Naka Meguro area. Its kind of like a big road with pockets of shops and restaurants surrounded by a residential area. I hear rent for apartments and office space is cheap in this neck of the woods.
Docomo - one of the mobile carriers in Japan.
This is what Gaijin call the "bingo election boards." Tis election time where noisy vans drive around residential areas with politicians doing not much more other than shouting out their name 52 trillion times. It seems it not about what they want to do for you but trying to brainwash folks into remembering a name.
The bingo board slowly fills up as the election process goes on. I was going to stick up a poster of Saber and take a photo ^^;
Most of Japans telecommunications stretch out overground - thanks to this, Japan's broadband penetration is one of the highest in the world as they can lay out the cables at low cost without having to dig up the roads.
Check out a post I made a while ago about how I got my Optic Fiber Internet connection installed.
Stumbled onto a "Singaporean" restaurant and decided to check it out - unlikely to go back again ^^;
This is "Singapore Laksa" which they took 15 million years to prepare even though there was hardly anybody else in the place.
And this is their "Hainan Chicken Rice." This restaurant decided they wanted to focus on presentation rather than taste ToT.
Cant wait until I'm back in Singapore this November to try the real stuff!
Cute characters can be found all over Japan and are a core part of Japanese culture. Folks over here are exposed to "Kawaii" from day one.
Evening starts to settle in as wifey and I take our after dindins stroll.
Perfect for folks who feel peckish during work - use this gun type thingy to suck out those blackheads from your nose - then roll em up in a ball and chew. Om nom nom.
You can easily come out of Donquijote (pronounced "Donki Horte") with a headache from all the information your brain tries to process - the place is packed!
Out n about Shibuya heading to Citibank. Citibank is great as once you have more than a certain amount in the bank, most fees to transfer money overseas and cash cheques are waived.
But Citibank can also be a pain too as they only have a few branches over here. Many Gaijin use Citibank as they always have English speaking staff.
Shibuya is full of fashion stores, restaurants and is home to Tokyu Hands and the Apple Store.
Outside the 109 building. I don't think I've ever been inside ^^;
Some One Piece goodies up for grabs in this UFO Catcher.
Evening in my neck of the woods.
Guess what this is.
Repairing armor before trip to the US. The Micron servo units circuited out and stopped supporting the weight of the armor. Easily fixed with some Kameltoenium mined from the forth moon orbiting Coruscant.
You know when you become really attached to your daughters when you unconsciously react and reach out to stop one of them falling off the table - and in the process smash your fave glass mug!
But when stuff like this happens I consider myself lucky - it could have been milk or even worse a glass of vomit.
Menu at the local sushi place - what stories do you have regarding ordering meals in Japan? One of my comrades from the US ate McDees all the time because he could not be bothered with trying to "negotiate" for food at local places ^^;
This is "Chirashi" - tis usually bits of fish, egg and other small bits n pieces on rice.
Wad O sushi.
Wad O Sashimi.
Our neighbors and good friends. This chap does all the styling for many of the Japanese movie celebs - he's also a Mac and Nikon geek too ^^;
The eldest daughter is about to enter high school and comes over to learn English taught by wifey.
A sign outside a ramen place. The word "Yabai" means "dangerous" but is more often than not used to express when something is "dangerously good."
In this case, "Yabai" is referring to the taste of the ramen - "dangerously good tasting ramen".
When I travel, I take the MacBookAir - tis light weight but really only good enough for mail, web and short conversations on Skype. Takes ages to process photos.
I have most of my data on a 500GB USB drive so don't need to do much to set up the MBA - usually prep it with the latest apps or wot not for the trip.
My eldest daughter Saber. At home she wears Zettai Ryoiki stockings but loose socks when she travels - the reason is that her knees are easy to bend with loose socks.
Eating while standing is called "Tachi-gui" - you can find these places to grab a quick bite to eat in areas with large concentrations of salary men.
Om noming some food at the Chinese restaurant - this is the place where I take all guests as its easy to do wheeling and dealings here.
One of the reasons why I'm rather strapped for time before a trip is because I end up leaving it to the last moment to work on my Keynote. Am usually up until the early hours of the morning doing this and end up being completely knackered after giving the talk ^^;
But its always an honor to be asked to give a speech and the most gratifying thing is to be able to share my experiences and meet new folks.
Some sweet stuff served by none other than Mugi-chan to recharge the brain cells.
Saber, MacBookAir and iPad all packed - giving the girls a final pep talk before I leave then to look after the relatives who are over as usual while we are out.
Waiting for a train at Meguro.
Skyliner tickets get.
It is not an exit here.
Filling up on some grub at the business lounge Narita.
Our vehicle for the day - All Nippon Airways direct to LAX from NRT.
A look out of the window as evening settles in over some part of the world.
Giveaway question - what country is this? ^^;
Approaching LA - about to land in the morning after an 11 hour flight.