Japan on a Friday: Sayonara to sushi and all that

After 3 amazing weeks of work and play in this country, it's time to leave. There's just too much more to see. A society with a fascination with the minutiae of life is one you will never cease discovering. Like the charred log that plays ambient sounds that I only read about in my guidebook, but didn't quite make it to that area - Akhihabira, electronic geek central.

I got together with some BF Club of Japan folks for a Hokkaido-style meal just before I left. It was also the occasion to hand over my Princess Pink tikit to the new owner, Ray-san - a great deal for her considering the strong state of the yen against the tanking dollar.

Adam Clark rode his Pocket Rocket all the way from Yokohama (1 hour) and Taniguchi-san and his wife KimLee trained it 1 hour from Seitama, north of Tokyo.

The meal, at a local Gotojuki station restaurant called Raku, was a delicious and curious combination of potatoes, fish and salad - like Tokyo meets Idaho - Hokkaidaho?

Taniguchi-san (below, right) whipped out his clever device for toting the tikit with even more ease, as modeled by Tomo - basically a longer strap you can use instead of the small red handle.

Earlier, Cycle Tokyo's Ats Nakamura took me on a whirlwind shopping spree of the 100 yen stores. We came across some curious items, including this device to give you Hollywood lips:

I picked up 100 yen soba, dashi, sencha+matcha tea (my favorite) and stuff you can probably buy in America from a Japanese grocery store, but when in Tokyo, bow deeply and buy, right? Somehow I managed to spend $150 or so in no time flat on mundane things like the funky sesame grinder I've been seeking (100 yen) and the neat and tidy Japanese powerstrips, Eneloop batteries, but no lip stretchers - they were a bit spendy at 1200+ yen.

Even earlier, we ate another new taste sensation, Tan tan ramen, resembling ramen in a sesame, laksa like broth, minus laksa's curry and coconut.

Packing now, more soon....

More Gal in Japan on a Friday


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