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Showing posts from December 1, 2013

Strange Shop Names

There is really no end of these so just a few of my favourites so far:

For when you urgently need a suitcase
Sadly the cafe was decorated in neutrals
For clothing that makes you feel snug and protected

Something I have yet to understand is why the Japanese associate everything french with the ultimate in refinement and chic. I can only assume it is because France is quite a way away from here and so they haven't been. The number of shops with french names - restaurants, cafes, book sellers, clothes stalls, chemists - is quite astounding. But then I asked someone if the Tokyo Tower was supposed to be a replica of the Eiffel Tower and she seemed quite confused.
More than a passing resemblance though, right?

Daiso on Takeshita Street

Now that we have a move in date for our new flat I am becoming quite single-minded about furnishings. We're trying to do it all on a budget and so I headed for Daiso on Takeshita Street, which is one of the huge 100 Yen shops. These are like the UK's pound shops but everything is about 80p.

The street it's on is like Camden Market - lots of small shops with their wares spilling onto the pavement selling things aimed at the youth market. You can get your psychedelic sweatshirt... to a store selling gothic vampire lolita outfits.
Among many other shops there is even one packed with everything you never knew you wanted to do with Tamagochi. Remember those little keyrings with digital creatures in them that ate and poo'd then died? Yes those, except they evolved.
I happilly admit to not knowing what was going on in that shop except that there were some 10 year old girls who were really excited by it all.

Back to Daiso - 4 floors of poundshop goodness.
I shopped unt…

Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

Pooch and I spent Sunday afternoon strolling around an idyllic part of Tokyo.
This park originally started in 1590 and belonged to one of the Shoguns during the Edo Period. Some of the trees were clearly hundreds of years old but it has been extensively landscaped since the original and is now a kind of cross between Regents and Hyde Parks in London. There were lots of family groups picnicking as well as pensioners painting the views (very well too) and young couples and groups of friends walking around. It is 200 Yen to get in so about £1.30. Definitely worth it!
With autumn, the leaves were changing and you got the most amazing colours and effects with the sunlight.
Lots of people were as fascinated by the sunlight's effects as I was so you got little groups of photographers all in the same places - as in to the left of the photo below.
The variety of plants was amazing. Apparently there are 64 varieties of cherry tree alone so the blossom in the spring will mean this is somewhe…