Turning Japanese Again, Tsukiji Market

Why had I gone to Shinagawa to kill time? Simply put, it was far enough away from Tsukiji that walking alone would eat up some time, but not so far that I would be exhausted by the time I got to my destination. I had originally thought Shibuya, but a quick glance at a map ruled it out immediately.
To add to my time getting to Tsukiji, I also planned to walk to Tokyo Tower for some night photographs. Beyond that, I was making up everything as I went. That wasn’t too hard, considering I didn’t really know where I was going. I wasn’t looking at a map, I was just using my sense of direction (usually very reliable) and certain landmarks to know where I was.
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Turning Japanese Again, Touring Tokyo (more still)

We got up a bit later than I’d hoped for, mostly because I’d accidentally turned off the alarm instead of snoozing it.
We took the first train we could get to into Tokyo. I stood, wedged in a space between the door and the side of the bench, watching the scenery pass. At the time, I had thought this to be my last trip into Tokyo. Having been to Japan twice in two years, I can’t honestly imagine returning any time soon.
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Turning Japanese Again, Kamakura

We were up a little earlier than the previous few days, so we could catch a good train out to Kamakura, our excursion for the day.
Kamakura is a small town south of Tokyo, about an hour and three-quarters away from Yotsukaido. From 1192 to 1333, Kamakura was the feudal capital of Japan. There are no signs of its previous governmental past today, but the marks of its present status as a religious centre are very clear. The area is peppered with no less than 84 shrines and temples. Less than Kyoto, but Kamakura is a much smaller area.
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Turning Japanese Again, Touring Tokyo

The household woke up slowly. The events of last night (see [[Turning Japanese Again, Reception Party in Chiba]]) had done us all in. Kaz and Chris were tired from all the attention they’d been getting. Jen and I were tired from all the things we’d done and drinks we’d had.
As such, we were in no hurry to do anything. I was the first up, my bladder calling attention to itself, and sat down to catch up on my journals. Chris and Kaz were up shortly afterwards. Chris needed to go back to his apartment before going to work, and suggested that I come along to collect last night’s laundry.
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Turning Japanese Again, Reception Party in Chiba

We woke up several times this morning. Once when the phone rang (Mike and Brenda checking in on us), when Kaz and Chris’ new refrigerator showed up, when the phone rang a second time, and when the earthquake hit.
And this time, I’m not joking.
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Turning Japanese Again, Shinkansen to Tokyo

More tofu for breakfast. Blech. Well, not so much blech as bland and really not what I’d like to eat first thing in the morning. Jen didn’t eat much.
Today we’re back to Tokyo (and Yotsukaido). But first, we wanted to do a little touring around. And I do mean “little”. Specifically, two stops up the Karasuma line to the Kyoto Imperial Palace. I really wanted to see what it’s like in there.
But first, we had to pack up and check out. Which wasn’t easy — we’d spread ourselves all over the room. Although it didn’t take me long to pack, Jen had to take a bit longer out of necessity. It’s safe to say that, either way, both of us officially have too much stuff.
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Turning Japanese Again, Shinkansen to Toyohashi and Irako

I slept a little oddly, considering we’d been up for over 24 hours straight. Woke up once around 3:00 (mostly to go to the bathroom), again at about 5:00, and finally at about 7:50. At that point, it was enough to say I’d probably adjusted to the time zone.
Jen and I proceeded to get on with our morning. For me, showering and shaving (showering when it’s eight degrees in the shower room is a bit of an odd experience), gathering our things from the previous night, laying out Chris and Kaz’s wedding gifts (that they don’t yet know about), and getting breakfast.
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My Trip to Japan, Imperial Palace and Ueno Park

Today was my last full day in Japan. There was so much I still wanted to see and do. I couldn’t do everything … but I darn well tried!
Chris had to work, so would stay behind in Yotsukaido. Kaz, her friend, Ellesen, and myself went into brave the city of Tokyo and what wonders there were yet to find.
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My Trip to Japan, Yokohama

Another day, another adventure. Today, though, we would throw in a different nationality.
We all rose at basically the same time and quickly prepared for our departure. We needed to be in Yokohama by about 10:30, which meant we had to leave fairly early. It’s just shy of two hours to Yokohama.
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My Trip to Japan, Odaiba Seaside Park

Today was a good day. Not that other days have been bad by any means, but when you can sit back and reflect and feel really good — that’s a particularly good day.
Chris was up early to meet Kaz at Tokyo station. We had loosely planned to hit something interesting in Tokyo today, but Ellesen and I needed to sleep in a bit. (Where Chris finds all the energy he’s got lately, I’ll never understand.)
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