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19 March 2007 @ 04:26 pm
六日: "There Are No Whales In Colorado, Either" (Part 1?)  
Today (or most of today, since it's about five now, and I'm waiting for Dusty to arrive in a couple of hours, assuming he hasn't been delayed):

Got up, and set out in search of anpan. Succeeded. Found the gas station I was looking for, too, and it was everything I'd hoped it would be. Even the cats stare at gaijin here -- should have gotten a picture of one that stopped to stare at me this morning on my anpan expedition (I love how they also have signs that say "don't feed the cats" in the parks).

After that, set out to find Iriya station, succeeded, and hopped the subway to Ueno, where I walked around a bit (looks like the sakura might be sometime soon, we'll have to see how soon), took a couple pictures, might have seen Fuji-san (it was a bit hazy, and at best I barely saw the outline), and decided that the one thing I don't like about Japan is the toilets. Beyond being confusing, the public toilets are remarkably... Public.

At this point, I was kinda bored, so I hopped on the subway out to Shibuya, had no problem finding Hachiko (who had on a nice knitted afghan today), wandered on the trains and the subway back and forth to Shinjuku, Ikebukuro, Ginza, and back, periodically stopping to find a konbini, grab some パン of some sort, and get some of that royal milk tea stuff to wash it down (Dusty's right, it is da bomb). Did some people watching on the trains, and I think I've pretty much figured out Tokyo subway etiquitte -- it's actually quite organized and efficient, which I guess makes sense, since these may well be the most crowded subways in the the world.

Another thing I noticed -- on my search for konbinis, I figured out that the best way to find one was just to wander off the main streets to any side street, and you'd inevitably run into one almost immediately. What's more surprising to me is how hard it actually is to get lost in Tokyo. Or maybe I just totally suck at getting lost. Mind you, the compass was a really great idea, but never really had any trouble figuring out where I was, no matter how far I wandered off the main streets in search of that konbini (well, never more than a few blocks, really, although sometimes I zigged a bit to see how I'd do), even in the places were I never looked at the maps ahead of time to get oriented.

Oh, and since I get the inevitable questions about Japanese girls, I will say one thing -- a lot of them have amazingly great calves. But then, I also never quite understood why 大根足 were really a bad thing. Legs aren't meant to be toothpicks, if you ask me.

They must have elected somebody -- haven't heard any vans today. Or maybe it's a holiday or something.

So, waiting for Dusty, but no idea what we'll do tomorrow, just that it'll be fun.

[see photos on flickr]
 
 
Current Location: Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan
In the mood: boredkilling time
 
 
 
nojaynojay on March 19th, 2007 09:53 am (UTC)
Rikai-chan
I use a Firefox pluging called Rikai-chan which performs dictionary autolookup for Japanese kanji and kana if you hover the mouse pointer over them. The neat thing is that it usually returns the root meanings of Japanese words or phrases too if you select only parts of the text string.

"大根足" means "fat legs" as you hinted, but Rikai-chan returned "daikon" for the first part, "大根"...
Douglas Triggs: fountaindoubt72 on March 19th, 2007 10:10 am (UTC)
Re: Rikai-chan
...That's actually accurate. The daikon in daikonashi does actually refer to the root -- "daikonashi" is used to refer to fat legs, because they look like daikon. Although, it must be said that the Japanese and American (or possibly European, though I don't claim to be an expert there) standards for "fat" are not entirely congruent.
Kyaa the Catlord: erilkyaathecatlord on March 19th, 2007 10:11 am (UTC)
Have I asked about Japanese girls? :P
Douglas Triggs: cateyesdoubt72 on March 19th, 2007 10:20 am (UTC)
Oh, I know you're thinking it.

BTW, I think I found something much, much better than a Maid Cafe. Oh, yes.
Kyaa the Catlord: servicekyaathecatlord on March 19th, 2007 10:25 am (UTC)
Oh, do tell. :P

You are luring me to Japan, afterall. :P
Douglas Triggs: girdoubt72 on March 19th, 2007 10:31 am (UTC)
All in due time. When there is photographic evidence.
Firsaroofshadow on March 19th, 2007 03:49 pm (UTC)
Oh royal milk tea! Which brand do you prefer? I always thought Japanese girls had great legs due to biking everywhere. Well, great until they were out of school, then they lost a lot of their definition.
Douglas Triggs: duckdoubt72 on March 19th, 2007 10:25 pm (UTC)
It's the stuff in the Coca-Cola machines -- if there's others, I haven't identified them or found them yet, so I've been sticking with that.
Firsaroofshadow on March 20th, 2007 06:18 pm (UTC)
Although I tried several varieties that show up in small out of the way train stations with vending machines filled with names you have never seen before nor ever will again, the three royal milk tea varieties you should be able to easily find in vending machines/conbini are: Lipton Royal Milk Tea (came in a carton when I was there), Kirin's 午後の紅茶 ロイヤルミルクティー (used to be my favorite), and the type you find in Coke machines 紅茶花伝 ロイヤルミルクティー. I think they're all quite good. Lipton has some nice seasonal varieties though, right now they ought to have sakura flavor and come autumn the caramel flavor is dreamy.
mediacultmediacult on March 19th, 2007 09:22 pm (UTC)
The rest of Japan is in ...
Maui. I know, I just came back. Sorry I have been so out of touch, Doug, but I went to work for Oracle and my life hasn't exactly been my own.

I am so happy for you that you finally got to Japan! I have read the last 10 entries or so in your LJ, and it sounds like you have been having a fabulous time. Glad to hear that, of course. I only found out you were there because I was showing my son your Star Destroyer. He is a huge Lego's fan, and has a fleet of vehicles of his own.

Have fun, best of luck, I will watch your LJ for new entries.

Peter
Douglas Triggs: cateyesdoubt72 on March 19th, 2007 10:26 pm (UTC)
Re: The rest of Japan is in ...
Oh, Maui, I still want to go there (I've only been to Oahu and the Big Island). And if they were in Maui, I think there are ten times more in Honolulu, where all the shopping is.

And great hearing from you; I understand the busy, I've been kinda on the busy side myself these recent months.
Tullytully01 on March 20th, 2007 03:14 am (UTC)
I'm not sure I want to hear about Japanese girls unless you can Fedex me one....