Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Adventure to Tokyo

I'm ready for bed but I thought I show a peek of what I was doing today. More about it tomorrow.

My friend Marlene lives part of the week in a town near me and part of the week in Tokyo and since I have never been to Tokyo she invited me. Yes, I have lived in Japan for over 30 years and have never really been to Tokyo. I have gone three times but each time I've had purposes in mind (like go to the American Embassy or see the Tokyo quilt show) and I have never just done touristy things and the other times I always had someone lead me. I am such a country bumpkin! Tokyo? Ooh, the big scary city!

But I needed to do some shopping for my trip to the States next month and there isn't too much to chose from in my part of Japan. Tokyo, on the other hand has whole districts that are full of shops if you want to buy souvenirs, another district for clothes buying, another district for cooking implement etc. This is all hearsay since I'd never been to any of these places but Marlene suggested I browse the Asakusa district and offered to join me.

Talk about an adventure! First of all, was I really going to be able to make my way to Tokyo and meet up with Marlene? It wasn't a matter of reading signs or understanding maps since I do read some Japanese and most everything in Tokyo is written in English anyway. But the train ways, stations, department stores, streets are like a maze, and every corner and side street looks like all the others. The stations flash big boards of ever changing train schedules with trains leaving every three or four minutes and the station I was arriving at had 8 exits! How was I ever going to find Marlene ? Come off it Tanya, just try! You've got a cell phone. And Marlene said she'd probably have better luck finding me than me finding her so I was instructed not to move once arriving in Tokyo

This morning I left bright and early from Nikko and took the train to Tokyo.

And here is my little Nikko station . All wooden, hardly a person in sight, a single taxi sitting out in front. Off I went on my adventure to the big city! More tomorrow!


4 Boys and a Lady said...

I'm excited to read more about your adventures in Tokyo!


be*mused jan said...

On my birthday in January, 2006, I stood outside of your little train station with my daughter, waiting for the bus to take us to Nikko. We had traveled up from Tokyo for the day, which was bitterly cold, and truthfully, made the day almost painful. The bus took forever to arrive and we tried to warm up in the sun, but it was so cold that the sunshine didn't make a bit of difference.
If I had *known* you then, Tanya, maybe we could have visited. (And warmed up at your place!)

mabrule said...

Oh I can't wait to hear more about your trip! I loved traveling on the trains when I was stationed in Japan! We just memorized the letters for where we wanted to go and got off the train there, most of the time it was the right place, LOL.