Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

2008/03/07 Tokyo Opera City, NTT ICC, Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, Shinjuku

With all of our official duties for the week done (and the symposium continuing in Japanese), Jennifer, Marja, Gary and I went for a leisurely sightseeing trip through Shinjuku. As we changed trains at Shinjuku station, I noticed a farmers market operating in an underground space.

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A short ride on the Keio New Line saved us some walking to Tokyo Opera City. Gary and I looked over the plaza from the mezzanine level while Jennifer and Marja fought jet leg with some caffeine.

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We played with the toys at the NTT InterCommunications Center.

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Walking west, we crossed under a major freeway and through an urban residential neighbourhood. We didn’t see any kids out, but playground equipment in the park suggests they live nearby.

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On foot, approaching the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, we saw the sculptures in the moat.

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It’s free ride up to the observatory floor. Looking southeast, the shopping malls of Shinjuku beckon.

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Looking southwest, the skyscrapers subside into lower buildings.

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We just had a few minutes to wait for the next elevator car down.

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In pursuit of an authentic Tokyo experience, we walked by a lot of fast food restaurants, and decided on a robata in an alley beside the railway tracks. We didn’t quite understand the menu — even in English — and had a great meal ordering a wide variety of small dishes.

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We didn’t choose the more exotic (and explicit) menu at the bar next door.

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To complete the evening, we strolled through the nightclub area in Shinjuku. I again saw the men dressed in dresses sweeping the street, and they’re still a mystery.

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I had visited Shinjuku with Diana last August, and it’s still fun. It’s one of the busiest areas in Tokyo, and there’s lots of people out for the nightlife.

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