All right–more Tokyo, guys!
After the Imperial East Garden, we got back on the bus and headed to Asakusa, which–I have since learned–is a district in Taito, Tokyo, and used to be an entertainment district from the Edo period on to about–you guessed it–World War Two.
(Are we sensing a theme here with Japanese history?)
We went to Asakusa to visit Senso-ji, a temple dedicated to the Buddhist boddhivista Kannon (from whom the founder of Canon took inspiration for the name of his company, btw). Senso-ji is also neighbors with a long, narrow road with tiny stalls on either side–souvenir stores, food stores, etc, on a road called Nakamise-dori (Inside Store Road, roughly translated).
|Bad picture of one of the gates from inside the bus|
From Asakusa, the bus took us to Ginza–a major shopping district–for lunch! It was a buffet style with Asian and Western food, which I grabbed a mixture of (if there’s paella, I will eat it, after all) and proceeded to eat everything with chopsticks.
My chopstick skills are off the hook right now, guys. I mean, I use them pretty regularly anyway, but I don’t think I used a fork the entire time I was in Japan.
But anyway, near the restaurant where the bus tour company took all of us to have lunch, there was this statue of Godzilla.
|Why? Who knows.
After lunch, we were taken to the Port of Tokyo for an hour or so ride on a cruise boat around Tokyo Bay. I didn’t really think about it then–because it was after lunch and afternoon and that’s when the jetlag would sort of hit me a little–but Tokyo Bay (or Edo Bay at the time) was where Commodore Perry appeared with his ships to demand that Japan open up and trade with America.
|The building with that round thing is the headquarters of Fuji TV.|
|Tokyo’s skyline, including Tokyo Tower|
Then we returned to port, crossed a bridge, and went to Odaiba. Odaiba is a manmade island in Tokyo Bay, which was built to defend Tokyo in the 1850s, but now it’s got a bridge and buildings and a shopping center.
So that was the end of the bus tour, pretty much. But I’ve got more about Tokyo and Japan for you–next up, a post about the mountain resort town of Hakone (including pictures of actual Mt. Fuji!) and Japanese food, because I ate a ton on this trip.