Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Trippin': Tokyo, Japan - Day 2 [Travel Tuesday]

Note: It's Travel Tuesday! First, read Japan Day 1. All Travel Tuesday posts are of course in the Travel Tuesday tag.

Lost in translation in Shibuya

Everyday here is a freakin' adventure.
Mar. 28th, 2007 at 7:38 AM

Quick update.
Tokyo time: 8:45am.

Yesterday was just awesome.
I bonded with Kaye, my fellow journalist.
I ate ice cream outside, in freezing weather.
I got my picture taken with Hachiko the dog.
I had my Lost in Translation moment in Shibuya.
I ogled weird stuff in Don Quixote.
I went broke over a bunch of bento stuff.
I nearly died on a very Amazing Race-like adventure to get on the last train (my muscles are still aching).
I stayed up nearly all night talking with Rex, my childhood friend.

I'm exhausted, but smiling.
Leaving for Disneyland now. 

Current Mood: happy happy
Current Music:Silence in my Tokyo Dome Hotel room

Start of Day 2

Different country, same face in the morning. I don't look angry on purpose! My face just scrunches up when I wake up automatically. 

The time. Yep, it was pretty early.

I went to the window and realized that I was having a Lost in Translation moment right there.

Good morning, Tokyo! I always take a picture of the view from my hotel room everywhere I go, but this was the first time that I saw a city literally blooming with buildings. 

Bathroom time. I love Japan's high-tech, automatic toilet bowls! I got startled when I sat down and the bowl started up like a machine, heh.  

All set and ready for the day.

We had a choice of going to the hotel buffet or having a Japanese breakfast. Kaye and I decided to go for the latter of course. We didn't understand what the waiter said to us, so we just nodded, and after a little while he brought us each a lovely tray filled with a variety of things. Sadly, most of the stuff on the tray were too weird-tasting for us. We took turns trying out bits and pieces of the meal and cringing haha. We did eat all of the tasty broiled salmon and rice though.  

Us in the elevator on the way back to our rooms after our interesting breakfast.

When I got to my room, I opened my box of chocolate biscuits that I brought from the Philippines. This is the second time that I've travelled with a box of these. I can't live without chocolate, and these are great to tote around because they don't get squished, don't melt, or anything. I ate a few while reading the Daily Yomiuri.

Then I go online. The broadband in my hotel room was free! I love Japan. 

I watched The Hills on my notebook next while changing into business attire for the conference. There weren't many channels on the TV, and there weren't a lot of English shows - just funny Japanese shows, heh. And yes, the first thing I saw when I turned on the TV was porn, next was MTV, and then Nickelodeon haha. I had to press a whole other button to get to the "normal" channels.

Erika rang my doorbell, then we went to Lowenz's room so she can phone the others who weren't answering their doorbells. 

The Philippine group in the elevator on the way down to the conference hall.

We were early, so we sat for a bit in the corridor.

We started looking through the exhibits that Epson set up for the event. This was a demo for an instant photo lab system. 

Time for lunch. Our group plus the other Southeast Asian delegations went down to the hotel's Artist's Cafe together. Outside were souvenirs from artists who did shows there. That's a jacket from the Rolling Stones and a collage of stuff from Bon Jovi.

This meal was so yum - appetizers (smoked salmon, cold cuts, shrimp, squid, octopus, a cherry tomato and a potato wedge), steak with mashed potatoes, plus some sort of custard and cake for dessert.

Conference time. This was my press kit - printed copies of the slides and an IR receiver for the English translation of the presentations because everything was in Japanese.

Work, work, work.

Exhibit time again. There were lots to look at. These were printed using Epson technology.

Restroom break.  

Back to the exhibit. We loved this demo. You can play a game, press a button on your printer, and get a printout of the game scene you were playing. You can also watch TV, like, say, a cooking show, then press a button on your printer and the recipes featured on that particular show will get printed out. However, this kind of technology is exclusive to Japan only at the moment. 

Next came the executive open forum. Here's the Philippine group with the Epson president and an Epson executive after the event. 

Work's over! I go back to my room where I find a note from one of the hotel's housekeeping staff. It says "We leave it alone. Because we think you need it. Housekeeping Akutsu." I wondered what the "it" was - then I realized that the note was left beside my bottle of mineral water and the drinking glass I used this morning. How thoughtful!

I got out of my business attire and changed into more casual clothes. I took pictures of my outfit because I realized that I'd have to layer jackets over it since it was so cold out. I kept forgetting that I wasn't in the Philippines (where it's summer already).

 I go online while waiting for the official dinner to start.

This is the view of Tokyo from my room at night.

Dinner time. Epson had a kampai (toast) ceremony for all the foreign journalists. Yes I stuffed myself with sushi, and then had a scrumptious strawberry dessert. 

After dinner, Kaye and I came up with a gameplan on our way back to our rooms. We figured out where we wanted to go, what we wanted to do, and how we were going to do it. All tourists need a gameplan. Trust me. 

Before I left for Japan, I e-mailed my sort-of childhood friend Rex, who's based in Tokyo (he's taking his doctorate in Tokyo University), upon the urging of our moms who are close friends. Long story. I didn't want to at first, because the last time we met, I was 6 and he was 8 years old! But when I got to Tokyo he called my hotel and e-mailed, then I called him and we arranged to meet. When all my official work stuff was over, I went online and e-mailed his phone. Then I called him up and he came to the hotel. 

Rex turned out to be a really cool guy. He was willing to act as our tour guide, and he brought his awesome camera too. We went to LaQua first - the mall and amusement park right behind our hotel. 


Rex didn't have dinner yet, so we accompanied him to KFC.  

Here's what he ate.  

He treated us to dessert, and Kaye and I went for the ice cream! We also decided to eat outside, in the very chilly weather! KFC Japan's ice cream is really good, with actual dark chocolate on top of the soft ice cream. KFC Philippines doesn't even have ice cream. 

Lakas ng trip! I was so pale from the cold haha. 

We then hied off to the subway to go to Shibuya! 

First view of Shibuya from the train station. 

The place looked amazing! 

First stop: Hachiko, the faithful dog. It's a very popular meeting spot in Tokyo.

Then, Shibuya Crossing! 

Truly a Lost in Translation moment. 

Rex led the way to Don Quixote, a store with a lot of quirky stuff. 

Boob pillows. 

Silly boxers. 

Pringles with some unique flavors.  

Rex bought some chips, while Kaye bought chocolates. Then we went up these stairs and found my mission in Japan: authentic Japanese bento boxes! But I had to stop taking pictures here because we rushed to catch the last trains.  

Rex told me and Kaye to hurry, but we didn't know that we had to hurry like you do in the Amazing Race! We almost died from running up endless escalators and stairs, buying tickets, hurrying from one platform to another, switching trains, and running inside the trains to get to the first cars. We had to take three trains to get back to the hotel. We caught the first one just in time to get into the last car, so we ran to the first car to save time when we get out. We barely made it to the second train. Rex had to wedge himself between the doors so that the "pusher" (person who stuffs people into the trains) would pry the doors open for us. Kaye got half her body in, and I had to stick my arm into the gap so that the doors wouldn't close. We were so relieved when we finally got to the platform for the third train, with three minutes to spare. 

Kaye and I were so exhausted! Our muscles ached so bad and it took some time to catch our breath. Rex, on the other hand, was so used to it that he hardly broke a sweat. 

Back at the Tokyo Dome Hotel. Rex and I ended up talking for almost the whole night. There were no more trains, so he crashed in my room. I gave him some of my chocolate biscuits which he hasn't eaten in years, and I sampled the Jalapeno and Cheese Pringles that he bought in Don Quixote. Oh, and that's Rex's awesome camera by the way. We called it a night at around 4am. 

I changed into my jammies. 

The lights were already out when I remembered that I was doing adayinmylife, so I had to take one last pic of me in bed. This is why I look like something from the Grudge. Goodnight!

End of Day 2

No comments:

Post a Comment