Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Nippon 3

Day 3:
I cant really remember much about this day... maybe if I start writing about my day it will spark my memory. I think I had some time in the morning, so I wandered around Asakusa (the area near my hotel. It's a big tourist area because its a traditional area with temples and shrines and other things to see. I headed to Shibuya to meet up with Yuriko and her friend Gabi. We met at the statue of Hachiko, and Yuriko was late (like always). Not just a few minutes late... but late enough that I felt it was worth mentioning. We went to a famous music store in Tokyo called Tower Records. Two months prior, my favorite singer had released her first solo album in 5 or 6 years. I was happy to see they still had a big display of Shiina Ringo items in the store. I was able to pick up her new album and see all the items they had. They had reprints of old magazines with articles on Ringo, and of course lots of newer magazines (June 2009) and even a few books. One book was a biography of Ringo, another was a scrapbook of her life, especially her career. It was really cool but the price was roughly $100. I realized that she is one of the most popular Japanese singers in Japan, even though nobody outside of Japan seems to know about her. It's kind of curious, since her style seems to be one that would lend itself well to international acclaim -- She has alot of English in her songs compared to artists such as Ayumi Hamasaki who is one of the most internationally recognized J-singers. And she is very uniquely persistant, along the same vein as Bjork (but obviously to a lesser degree). Anyhow, I digress. I could have spent all day in that store but Gabi looked bored out of his mind, so I figured it was best if we left. But it was cool to see some of my favorite J-singers albums and magazines. I also saw albums by Utada, Perfume, and other groups/singers.
It was hard to find the backcopies of the June magazines so we search for those a little more in another store, with no luck. At this point the days kind of blend together. We went into a secondhand clothing store that had a lot of kimonos, but maybe that was on day 2. And we went into a famous electronics store... I think that was day 2 also, because i remember Yoshiko being there.
Back to day 3. We were walking and came to a park, where we got some ice cream and rested. Then we decided to go see Tokyo Tower in Southern Tokyo. When we made it there it was already dusk. It was quite expensive to go to the top. So, we just stayed at the bottom and explored the temple near the base of the tower and took photos of the tower. It was pretty cool in the evening because all of the lights come on.
After that we went to an Ainu restaurant. This was one of the most interesting things that I did in Japan, so I don't think I can fully summarize it now. I'll update more later. Cya~

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