Retrospect: Tokyo 2010

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Back in the Summer of 2010, I got the chance of a lifetime to visit one of my most beloved city in the world and that is Tokyo, Japan. Our family annual trip usually happens in the winter time, but due to that my hometown Shanghai was hosting the World Expo that year we moved our annual trip to summer. Since the flight from Shanghai to Tokyo is only about two hours I requested to my parents that it was the perfect opportunity for me visit Japan. 

Luckily, One of my childhood friend just happened to live in Tokyo and gladly offered me to stay at his home during my stay. I have not seen him for years and was excited to finally able to have this reunion. In the past, it's always been him visiting me when I was still living in Shanghai.  I did promised him that one day that I would take the time and visit him in Tokyo. Fate answered as I finally got the chance to fulfill that promise.  

During my stay at Tokyo, I got to visited numerous sites and shops, but I think it was the food that really brings back the  memories as I'm writing this blog entry. 

So here we go, my first day at Tokyo.  

 

 

 
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Much like the big cities, around Tokyo you have to travel by the subway AKA the bullet train. I remember the first thing I realized was just how expansive everything was in tokyo, even the train tickets seem a little bit overpriced.  

 

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Every where I go it remind me that I am living in sort of anime, especially when we were on the platform waiting for the train. My first tour site is the home of the emperor of Japan

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Here is the home of the emperor of Japan, it was raining day so we didn't get the chance seeing it close.

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The city itself is very clean, basically you cant see dust no matter where you go. 

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It was my first time eating at sushi on a conveyor belt, these little shop are just about everywhere in Tokyo. The price of the sushi depends on the quality of the fish, good catch normally yield for a higher price. I can't taste the difference as they all were all so delicious. Think my favorite ones was the Fried Eel Roll and Spicy Tuna Roll, but like I said they were all pretty good. 

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It was raining during my first day. I just love these little alley way. 

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During noon the sun finally showed up, and along with these two school kids. This was my favorite shot of the whole trip.  

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Feel like i am in a Makoto Shinkai Movie...  

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Cellphone basically a necessity in Japan. Here in the states, We just now start using our phones as our wallet, but in Japan its been adopted for decades. Everywhere you can you can purchase items by just swiping your phone. Back in 2010, the iPhone still wasn't that big in Japan, but in the last few years its been dominating the Japanese Smartphone market. 

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On our way to Tokyo Sensoji Temple (浅草寺) 

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View of the streets of Tokyo from the train platform.

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In Tokyo, you can only build up or down, since most of the space has already developed.  

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You can serious get lost in Tokyo if you don't your way.  

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After 30min of train ride, we finally arrived at the temple.  

 

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A shopping street of over 200 meters, called Nakamise, leads from the outer gate to the temple's second gate, the Hozomon. Alongside typical Japanese souvenirs such as yukata and folding fans, various traditional local snacks from the Asakusa area are sold along the Nakamise. The shopping street has a history of several centuries.

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Once you get near the temple you will run into walls of these trays that contain a piece of paper based on the date...or your birthday...not sure

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Here's what I suppose was my fortune.  

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Then we fold the paper into ribbon like shape and tie it on to these rode.  

 

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Then you burn it so it can pass it on to heaven.  

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Part of the temple was doing some renovating that summer.  

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This picture has the look and feel of old japan.  

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For lunch we visit one of the finest Ramen Shop in Tokyo.

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I will one day go back to Tokyo just for this. 

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One final shot of the temple before we start heading towards Akihabara

 

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Which mean more time on the train.

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Once we goto Akihabara it was just packed with shops. Akihabara is known for its electronic shops, hence its often called the Electronic City of Tokyo. 

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Feel like it one of those open Asian market, but its for electronic.  

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People are just everywhere.  

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Every corner you turn theres more shops. I saw a bunch RPGs that I so wished it was release in the states.  

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On our way to the biggest electronic mall in Tokyo.  

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This mall is about the size of a football stadium, and every floor is dedicated to electronics.  

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It well take weeks to visit everything in Tokyo, but on day one I got visited two of the main attractions.  

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this is the neighborhood close to my friend house.  

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All the houses are so close to each other, but the spaces are well divided. The housing in Tokyo are super expansive.   

Well this goes for the first day....more to come!