Arriving at New Tokyo International Airport, AKA Narita, Dave and I took a taxi to the Central hotel in Shinagawa, an area of Tokyo city. We were very excited as Christina was to join us the next day for the rest of the two weeks. While settling in, Jun., an old friend we first met in UK while he was on a working exchange in 1979, called us. Junichi San wanted to arrange a visit, it was at least 10 years since Dave had last seen him and we were eager to meet.
Next morning we went to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building described in the guide book as a 400,000 square meter complex that has the feel of Gotham City, I would agree. Apparently the architect was trying to remind us of Paris’ Notre Dame. Maybe a link?
We had gone to check out the tourist information centre on the ground floor but we also ascended one of the 48 storied twin towers and had a coffee in the restaurant which gave us our first taste of Japan’s expensiveness!!!!!!
As it was 1st October they had an exhibit set up outside to remember friends and family members who have experienced breast cancer, at the risk of offending those I left out, I added two names to the many trees people where placing pink label name tags on. I was surprised and pleased that Breast Cancer Month is given widespread publicity here.
In the picture you can see a little of the “Gotham” architecture.
We spent the rest of the day walking around the Ginza district and trying to work out the extremely complex metro system. One of the problems is that the map shows the normal railway and private railways as well as the metro lines thus making it look like a spiders web, impossible for me to figure out, even Dave had trouble sometimes. The other problem with the very efficient, fast and frequent trains is of course the amount of people who use the system. It is always busy, sometimes extremely busy, at those times we experienced the “professional pushers”, people who literally, when you are convinced the carriage is full and will take no more, push until they get an extra five or six or more people in, no such thing as personal space here!! Christina was quite perturbed by this experience and said she will never think the Toronto Metro is overcrowded again!!!!
Christina arrived safely and got herself to the hotel for a very happy reunion. We had an early night as we were all a little tired. Christina awoke early the next morning and took herself off to work out, only to return a little later with the news our hotel had neither gym nor pool. It was an expensive hotel, but I guess being in Tokyo to get a pool you need to stay in a very expensive hotel!!! As we were by now all awake we decided to visit the fish market.