Hotel Pine Hill Ota
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Sundays are full on family days in Japan, and we are lucky to have a chance for a full extended family outing to Harajuku - youth culture shopping mecca. Tim bows out as he preps for a teaching exam, but May, Amy and Haruko join the three of us and Takakosan for an 8-member party excursion to the busiest of busy shopping streets -- Takeshita Dorii. If we don't lose someone it will be a miracle.
So far so good on our walk to the train station where we'll ...
... the electric trains, in front of shouting and screaming kids who bang on the windows, you've got my fullest respect.
So all in all it was a day of mixed surprises. Something positive, something negative. Let's just say that it keeps things interesting for me here. Next planned activity: attending a sumo tournament! Strange how Japanese culture can stretch from little trees to enormous wrestlers. I strongly doubt that that it will be disappointing!
Today was the annual PonyCon and seeing as how much I like My Little Pony I naturally didn´t go. Everyone else went, though; but me and Andreas decided to take the train to Mt Hachikoku, a small mountain/forest a little less than an hour west of Tokyo. This is the forest were the movie My Neighbour Totoro takes place, and ...
... today I'm sure.. there is ample space to wander, plenty of shaded seating, lawns for picnics, food outlets plus plants to buy.. wisterias too.. of course , the park seems to have all the boxes ticked.
One can only imagine the care, attention and detail taken to preserve the trees, maintain the flowers beds etc..
An extra delight we couldn't attend is the Flower Fantasy .. or Garden of ...
... background ...
(sorry I sound a bit too much Spaceballs, no ? The Spacballs cereals, Spaceballs t-shirt...).
Of course, you can find gashapon boxes a bit everywhere in Japan.
Kimono shop, another with so cute decoration around matsuri theme, the famous big candy shop I already discovered in Osaka.
And I finally saw the sign saying that the purikura area is forbidden for men, at least when they are alone. Yes, Japan is careful with perverts and ...
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