One Man Walking

003 – Nooks and crannies

April 3rd, 2008 · 2 Comments

Our all-night revelers staggered in this morning. Stinking of last night’s fun. It was 9am when Lorraine and I packed up but we were good enough to do it in the dark with the curtains of our basement room still drawn. Nakamise-dori was full of activity as we headed to the station. Yesterday, at a much earlier time, we’d seen business men stopping by to offer their respects. Perhaps honouring ancestors or hoping for a successful conclusion to a big deal they’re working on. Today the visitors were tourists, mostly Japanese but a few westerns were about.
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Shibuya is apparently the busiest pedestrian crossing in the world so we took the time to get out of the subway and take a look. Honestly it wasn’t as big or as busy as I has expected, but we weren’t there for any of the rush times. At Shinjuku we had to find the bus terminal so I tried my best to ask a friendly looking old lady, who then launched into many animated, and cheerful, sentences that could have boiled down to “that direction, under the 50 sign”. I did much better at the ticket booth getting my ticket, saying I wanted the next bus and asking where I could buy lunch. considering I know less than 100 words I can get through a lot of situations. I’m also picking up some kanji (Chinese characters). I know the symbols for entrance, exit, mountain, up and down, which leaves about 6995 more to learn.

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The bus ride brought us to Kawaguchi-ko (Kawaguchi Lake). It’s a quiet little town close enough to Fuji to get some tourists. There is a cable car up to the top of Kenjo mountain but I need some training and Lorraine is a sucker for punishment so we walked up it. The trees were bare and we crunched last year’s leaves underfoot. I haven’t felt a spring like this for a long time. The views were great as the afternoon haze faded away and we walked down a slightly different way that lead into the back of town. We wound our way between little houses. This is authentic Japan, in the nooks and crannies of little towns. I look forward to settling down in a town where I’ll get to know people in those houses, maybe even live in one.
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Word of the day: e-ki = station

photo  ·  pre-hike

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Eric Craig // Apr 4, 2008 at 4:36 pm

    Safe arrival – you certainly have been out & about in quick time – also great to hear you are mastering the language, enjoying different meals – looking forward to read each blog – take care
    Nana & Grandad

  • 2 Tony // Apr 7, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Shibuya – forget rush hour, go visit it on a saturday night around 11pm – its awesome. Go up to Starbucks and get a window seat and a decent zoom lens camera and people-watch, its amazing. It was featured of ‘Lost in Translation’ too. I love Tokyo…

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