my quite ridiculous and very ambitious plan in tokyo was..
Tokyo Travel Blog› entry 19 of 20 › view all entries
.. to spend two days and one night in the city with my backpack and no plans of sleeping at all.
To have enough energy, I knew I had to have lots of sleep before I venture off but I was extremely excited that I just couldn't shut off my brain about my trip so I ended up having only a few hours of rest, just enough to make me feel like not going anymore for feeling too sleepy. But I still fought off the laziness and congratulations to myself!
I biked my way to the train station in Yachimata, left my bike by a convenience store and tried to use whataver's left of my photographic memory on buying my train ticket from the machine. They were all written in Japanese so I had to figure out which one is Tokyo but it turns out there's no more of my photographic memory because I bought a wrong ticket.
Anyway, the train ride was nice. No, the train ride was awesome until the time I was kicked out from the 1st class to 2nd class seats! It was an express train and only took 40 minutes to get from Yachimata to Tokyo. I didn't have any maps with me but only a piece of paper with a list of things I wanted to see and do in Tokyo thinking I can find a tourist information in the central station. Too bad my thinking wasn't enough I didn't saw one and I couldn't even find my way out of the station! After a lot of walking I found myself walking out of a mall, or a hotel or some sort! Luckily, right outside was a vicinity map so I immediately checked it out and memorized how many blocks away I was from my first stop of the day.
The Tokyo Imperial Palace is very close to the train station so it would be very smart of me to see it first. I knew that the inner buildings and gardens are off-limits unless you've signed up in advance for a guided tour so the only parts that I've got to see where the moats and walls surrounding the palace, the main gate and the Nijubashi Bridge. The current Emperor lives here but we're not really close so there wasn't any reason for me to stay longer. Plus, it was EXTREMELY HOT I needed to cool myself off a bit. It was too early to get grumpy! x__x
After 20 minutes of walking I found a subway station, thank goodness. A guy helped me out with buying my ticket but he didn't have to really. I can do it myself, might take me 15 minutes to find the station I am heading to on the subway map but I can manage.
Since it was really hot and humid this day, I knew it was time to do something indoors so my next stop was the Mori Tower in Roppongi Hills. It's another great way to get a city view of Tokyo aside from Tokyo Tower. I bough a ticket for the observation deck that also included the Mori Arts Museum and the Sky Aquarium. I got a good discount for using my student ID even though it was about 3 years ago since I've been officially a student of my last university. The first thing I did was to look around the Arts Museum and then the Sky Deck for the view of the whole city. The view was fantastic! Seeing the whole city on a clear summer day with Tokyo Tower standing right in front of you is just great. After some rest, I cheked out the Sky Aquarium and it was definitely cool.
Back on ground I walked around the Roppongi Hills and have managed to see the headquarters of TV Asahi then I went inside a shop filled with Doraemon merchandise. I also went to some fancy malls until I realized that it was past 2'oclock and I still haven't had lunch. My lunch was good even though I had no idea at first what were the mortar and pestle for (I watched the other diners and learned that they were for crushing the sesame seeds used for the sauce of my food. I know, I'm brilliant huh!).
My next stop was Asakusa for the Senso-ji Temple (also known as Asakusa Kannon Temple). Normally, it would just take 5 minutes or so to walk from the nearest subway station to the temple but being the genius that I am, I made it about 40 minutes (long cuts are my expertise)! One of the top tourists sights in Tokyo, the Sensoo-ji Temple is very old.
In front of the temple stands an incense burner where worshippers would wave the smoke to them for good health or healing of sickness. I followed and did it as well and also the cleansing ritual which I am proud to say I did correctly (or correct accidentally because I really didn't know what I was doing as I was just following everyone). Before you enter the temple, it's a ritual to clean your mouth and hands at the fountain.
Visitors enter through the Kaminarimon (Thunder Gate), the main entrance that is very famous for it's massive red and black lantern, but I instead did the opposite way.
While heading back to the subway station I got a call from Kenji asking me if I would come home that night and I told him no, I wasn't (I knew he was told to call me and my Uncle was probably worried, but my Aunt i'm guessing .. well who cares! hehe). I got on the subway again and chose my next destination.
This time it's Shibuya! It's so crowded, noisy, lively futuristic, fun, and busy and exactly what Tokyo is all about for me. Full of mostly young and very fashionable people, Shibuya is one of my favorite sights of Tokyo.
Since it was so crowded I was too shy to take a picture of me! I wanted to have a picture with the famous dog statue Hachiko but when I went near him and pointed my camera everyone sitting around were looking at me so I akwardly left in a fast walk. Shibuya is a very popular meeting place for people and sometimes they use the dog Hachiko for their meeting points. I decided to sit down and rest for a while since it was getting dark, I have been walking all day and my shoulers are in awful pain due to my backpack.
After a while I took some pictures again and then once I turned my head a guy was sitting close to me and smiling. He started talking and asking me why I was taking pics blah blah and then he asked me if I would want to go party with him. I said no of course! Why would I go with a stranger? He then asked me if I would want to eat out and I still said no! But he seemed like a nice guy so I finally gave him a chance... Ok I admit, he had me at McDonald's!!
We talked and tried to get to know each other. I'm not really good with names so I forgot his (well, I think I'm just not good with anything to do with remembering!). Take note, we were talking in Japanese so it was quite hard but at least I have put my hardwork in high school of self studying Japanese into some use! After McDonald's he asked me where I would want to go and I told him where so off we went to the subway station.
My main reason of wanting to go to Yebisu Garden Place was because of the Japanese comedy drama Hana Yori Danggo. Seeing the place in person will officially make me a cool person that I've always wanted to be! Bwhahahaha again! The place was really fancy and expensive. My new friend here is starting to imagine that I'm his girlfriend as he was starting to touch me and even wants to hold hands. I kept on brushing him off and he would ask, "Why?!". And I would answer him "It's too early! I don't know you yet!". I tried to escape but it was unsuccessful until I finally said to him that I'm going home and made some seriously stupid lies like where I live in Tokyo which he probably didn't believe because I have told him earlier that I live in Chiba and I don't know anyone in this city and I'm all by myself.
So I left him and walked back to the station as fast as I could before he could even follow me. I swear, I was scared because I do not like to be followed around. I just jumped off a random train and with no plans yet on where to go. I felt so stupid for telling a stranger my plans of sleeping or staying for the night outdoors like in Odaiba, alone. I was getting very very tired and I still have plans of seeing some more places the next day.
I looked at my map and thought of the next place that I would check out and I decided it to be Akihabara. The Electric Town of Tokyo, here you could find lots of shops for electronics gadgets from computers to celfones, latest cameras, huge flat screen tvs, animes, DVDs, and lots more, new and used! Lots of them but because I didn't know it was already closing time at 7pm only a couple of shops were open which was sooo unlucky of me.
I have planned on going to Odaiba and spending the night there if I could find a decent bench to sit on. I wanted to watch some dramatic sunrise by the Rainbow Bridge and even walk through it, if possible and allowed (not much research done obvioulsy). I wanted my breakfast to be some fresh sushi at the Tsukiji Fish Market. The next day I also planned to see Ueno Park, Harajuku (includes Meiji Shrine), and the Tokyo National Museum. But stupid girl didn't know how to get to Odaiba and was too tired to do a bit of thinking on what to do next she decided to call it a night and headed home.
I called the people in Chiba (I didnt want to say I called my Aunt but now I just did) to let them know that I'm done and will be home that night.
No regrets for not being able to go for two days because my body wouldn't be able to take so much. My legs were extremely painful I couldn't even think I would be able to walk around feeling that way if I have spent the night in Tokyo. My shoulders and back were aching so bad from having my backpack all day. I didn't even get to use whatever I have put inside it! I shouldn't have brought rocks with me. Seriously, I was so exhausted I couldn't even move the next morning I woke up.
Oh well, glad I had some fun in Tokyo! I love it!!!