Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

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2011/03/01-09 Harajuku, Aoyama, Enoshima, Kamakura, Yokohama, Mizonokuchi

My fifth visit to Japan included not only a tour of familiar sights, but also a day trip to Enoshima, Kamakura and Yokohama.
Since Tokyo is so many time zones from home, I arrive a few days and go sightseeing to beat jet lag.  On my fifth visit to Japan, I was the first of our meeting to arrive, with the group gradually gaining mass.  I checked into the usual hotel, in an high rise tower overlooking the tracks by Tamachi station.

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On a mission from DY, my first destination was Harajuku.  I went looking for crafting supplies at the Daiso (100 yen) store.

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The products aren’t made in Japan, but the variety is wider than in other branches internationally.

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A few blocks further east, the Design Festa Gallery changes its installations rapidly, with emerging artists showing their work for nominal costs.

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The variety of work includes paintings, photographs and sculpture by mostly Japanese artists.

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While most rooms are barely large enough for an overnight stay — Design Festa also offers artists accommodations from late evening to early morning, when the gallery is closed — this week featured a wall where artists could claim an 80 x 80 cm display space. Continue reading2011/03/01-09 Harajuku, Aoyama, Enoshima, Kamakura, Yokohama, Mizonokuchi

2009/02/24 Vegetarian cuisine at Jiyugaoka

Satomi asked for my preferences in cuisine, and I responded that I missed vegetables when I’m visiting in Japan.
Since I have strong preferences in food — some choices due to allergies, others from ethnic background — Satomi asked me for guidance on restaurant selection. I find Japanese food to not have the vegetarian content that Chinese food offers, so she had some time to think about that.

After a day of meetings at the university, we took the train out to Jiyugaoka station.

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Maps were consulted to figure out directions.

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Up the side street, many of the storefronts in this district were closed. I noticed the bicyclist choosing the safety of sidewalk, while pedestrians casually strolled the streets.

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The sidewalks were sometimes non-existent, so we had to be on alert for oncoming cars.

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Around the curve, the directions led us uphill.

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We found our destination, Aen, with a modest front door.

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Shiomi and Satomi had a lengthy consultation with the server about a good selection of alternative dishes. The menu is complete vegetarian, but I complicate matters by trying to avoid dairy products. Continue reading2009/02/24 Vegetarian cuisine at Jiyugaoka

2008/03/06 Seafood feast, Jiyugaoka

Jim hosted the workshop group for a seafood feast at Jiyugaoka.
After a full date in a workshop at TiTech, the group walked out together to the metro station and took the trains to Jiyugaoka. We wended our way through some shopping streets, and Jim led us to the entrance to an upstairs restaurant.

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We were seated around a long table. We westerners are thankful for the space under the table for our legs.

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The seafood to be grilled came in multiple baskets placed on the table.

DI_20080306_Jiyugaoka_seafood_basket.jpg Continue reading2008/03/06 Seafood feast, Jiyugaoka

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