25 July 2009

A good morning, a ‘meh’ afternoon, and a great end of day!

Saturday, 10.51pm

Ian worked late last night until about 2.30am, so we had a late start to the day today. Ian got up between 10.30 and 11, and we met Reiko for another fine day out Tokyo. The weather was finally great – warm, sunny, blue skies, big puffy clouds! We headed down to Odaiba, which is the newest section of Tokyo (similar to Pu Dong in Shanghai). Odaiba is basically built along the coast across the river from Tokyo. From its rocky shores, we could see all of Tokyo laid out in front of us:

Look at that skyline! It looks like a matte painting!

Before we did much exploring, we stopped for lunch. Sushi! My favorite!:

After lunch, we hit the coast, exploring the different odd thing to be found in Tokyo. First, we found a small version of Lady Liberty:

Then, it was down the coast to find a HUGE replica of a popular Tokyo Anime character robot called Gundam. This Gundam had blinky lights, steam (mist) that came out of is chest and legs, and a head that pivoted and tilted. Here he is with his head raised to the sky, about to take off (not the steam coming out of his legs):

I thought he was going to take off and swoop through Tokyo, but he didn’t. Instead, he just stood there.


For our last thing in Odaiba, we hit a really cool science museum/center. In the main hall was a globe with a perpetually-moving display. Here’s a display of ocean temperatures:

Also inside the museum was an ingenious display of how the internet packetizes and transmits information. They do it all with little white and black balls, see, and the internet sends those balls down metallic chutes towards spinny ramps, see, where knowledgable Japanese people help ensure that the messages are delivered properly. It’s all very efficient:

Leaving Odaiba, we headed back to Asakusa, where we were going to see a very famous fireworks display. Unfortunately, the streets were a mess. The fireworks were going to be set off over the river, but there was no place along the river for us to watch! The streets were packed with people moving back and forth over bridges and down streets, trying to find a good place to watch the show:

After 45 minutes of wandering around trying to find a viewing point, we gave up and decided to try a different subway stop. That was just as lame, so we gave up and headed back to Ikebukuro for dinner.

Reiko found us a great place to eat dinner. We had beer, plum wine, dumplings, mushrooms, pancakes, edamame, chicken, fish, octopus, sushi, and French fries. Mmm!

Now, Ian and I are back at his place, internetting a bit before my last night here in Tokyo. We’re meeting Reiko tomorrow morning to trek to the airport for my afternoon flight. It’s 11.13pm here, 7.13am on Saturday morning back in LA. I’ll be home in just over 24 hours!

Will probably post once more before I take off… but if I don’t, Sayonara Tokyo! And thanks Ian and Reiko! It’s been a blast!


The Girl In The Polka Dot Dress said...

Are these photos from your old point-and-click? They're really great! Safe travels back--see you in a week and a half!

Vincent Olivieri said...

yep, old point'n'click. it's tremendous in full sunlight, but in lowlight, it starts to get messy. note the blurry people at asakusa, and the blurry taiko drummers from the night before.