I am back to liking Japan again, lots of colour , smiles, people enjoying themselves – Shibuya is fun!
Masako was keen to make the most of the clothes shopping so I decided to try a few things on. Fairly quickly, after realizing that XL was not even close to fitting my top, and as for my legs….. I’m obviously a different shape to most Japanese 🙂
Roo and Masako were going off to do other things so I decided to go for a walk through to Harajuku station.
One of the first things I came across after the crowds, clothes and food of Shibuya is the NHK broadcast park, I don’t know if it was a special occasion but the park was full of performers singing and dancing, there is a music school there so I guess they were the students.
Leading from the NHK broadcast area is Yoyogi Park. Another big green space is in the middle of Tokyo, there seems to be quite a few of these. A quick Okonomiyaki in the park while wondering around. Apart from the many dogs being walked that is everywhere, the fashion influence from Harajuku is begging to show itself, VERY wild clothes here.
A look through the Mijijingu Shrine for some peace then to the young, hip and trendy I went.
It is impossible to describe this area, Oxford street in Sydney, SoHo in London, SoMa in San Fran none even come close to the variety here – Alaina you would be heaven! There is a very noticeable cultural difference here, no matter how wild the outfit, or how warm (it is 25 degrees today), people are much more covered up than in Australia – in that way it is still Asia.
Speaking of differences, what is more noticeable than what is here, is what is missing. No new bikes – everyone rides almost identical old chinese style, almost no iPods , no talking on phones on trains (there is sign’s everywhere asking you not too) – lots of text-ing though, no laptops or even laptop bags, relatively few cars and not really even crowds. Town Hall station on Friday afternoon is far more pushy than Ginza, one of the major Tokyo stations! There are loads and loads of people, but things are set up so it’s easy for them to move around.
It is also surprising how much green is around everywhere, much more open than I expected.
While there isn’t much technology around, my rental phone is incredible. It is almost impossible to drive there is so much crammed in it (took me 30 minutes to add a name to the phone book). It has camera, video, barcode reader, text OCR scanner, voice control, text to speech conversion, internet access, face recognition security; and that’s what I can work out without the manual.
I am sitting writing this having a coffee and for the first time I someone walking down the street dressed in a Kimono carrying her shopping – not something you generally see in Australia!
Finally, dinner in Shinjuku, where the wealthier fashionable crowds are beginning to appear!