Had our first full day in Japan. The morning began with a traditional breakfast, served in a private room downstairs, sitting on the floor with small tables and all. It was pretty neat. We hoped to repeat it again tomorrow but didn’t sign up in time.
Next, we set out in the general direction of Akihabara, some famous district with games and whatever. I don’t have much I really want to see in Tokyo but it was fun to have a look there. We went into this multi-floor arcade, where people were just playing fighting games and blowing their money on different versions of the claw game. Also, they were smoking and the music was stupidly loud. Definitely a different culture going on there. It was all Sega but not a huge variety; there weren’t even any interesting games.
Anyway, oh, right, on the way, we went to some temple. I guess it was probably Shinto. Gotta do some Wikipedia reading on Shintoism. There were a few rituals people were doing in there, like this strange thing with clapping and bowing. Also, people write their wishes on some pieces of wood and hang them at the temple. Interestingly, the Romans did a similar thing. I guess it’s a common human behaviour.
Later, we went to the big tower in Tokyo. I had hoped to see Mount Fuji (or anything) on this sunny day but it was pretty smoggy. I also confirmed my I initial impressions: Tokyo is a very ugly city. I’m having a great time but I won’t miss it when we move on.
I’m getting better at chopsticks but maybe only because I found my own, wrong way. I am still horrible if I try to do it the right way. Also, Japanese people are so crazy polite with the bowing and backing away. Well, it’s outright submissive a lot of the time. I also heard all this but it’s interesting to witness.
It’s fun to pick up on some of what’s written here and there but I regret having been so lazy in the last months, with respect to learning more of the language. It’s really great to see that look in their eyes when I say ありがとうございます。Some people seem rather pleased that I’m trying. I wish I knew more! I even have forgotten a lot of the Katakana, which is so helpful for guessing foreign words.
Anyhow, we walked over 16km today and were always on the move. I feel rather well adjusted already but I’m pretty tired now, given it’s already almost 11pm. Bert was out like a light. Matthijs is probably also sleeping. Andreas and Elon are in the other room, probably having fika.
Tomorrow, we have no plans yet. I would like to check out the Imperial palace. We will also need to solve the breakfast issue. Until my next post!