everyone! The office is closed on a 3-day holiday, part
, and Dennis, Jim and I took the opportunity to do some
shopping in Akihabara
the major electronics district in Tokyo. In the evening, Keith,
Jim and I went to Shibuya
the major hot spot of fashion and nightclubs for the young crowd.
It was a busy day but nice to get out and see some more of the city
other than the Toronomon section of Minato-ku
So let's get started. We met Dennis at Kasumigaseki train station
and rode along the Hibiya line until we got to the Akihabara
station. The electronics area is actually a couple of blocks
behind the station and you start to see what it's going to be like a
few blocks away. Here's Dennis and Jim getting ready for the big
day. There are not many people out yet because most places don't
open until 10 or so, we're there about half an hour early to start
wandering around and getting the feel for the place.
Amateur radio stores are well represented, and you can buy non-US
models of most of the same equipment we can buy in the States.
Prices are comparable.
There are adult hps in the Electronics City as well, and you can see
pink buses on the left which brought tourists into the area for a day
of shopping for clothes and toys.
We weren't sure if this was a Jewish store or just someone using a
specially-designed star shape.
Here's Jim with another radio store, but more importantly, the "Super
Potato" retro-video game store, where he was able to purchase some old
80's games and game consoles for fair prices. He became a regular
at Super Potato during his stay.
Why the bunny has a gun, we are not sure. But we thought it was
Jim became quite addicted to the Coffee Boss during his stay and was
excited to get Boss for 50 cents a can.
Anime is popular, and some of it is pretty sexy. There is even
adult Anime available for those who wish, and Jim reports some of it is
We had lunch at an Indian restaurant that had a logo we weren't quite
sure was either relevant or appropriate. Especially since the
plates said "Lahore" on them, which is a city in Pakistan.
Some of the power poles in the city, ok most of them, look like this,
which seem somewhat scary. Lots of wires and exposed transformer
connections. Kind of like in India.
As the day went on, more and more people came out to shop and they
actually ended up shutting down the streets for several blocks so we
could not get run over. If it's good for business, they'll do it.
For dinner, we went to Shibuya
to try to find a Ramen noodle shop. Shibuya is one of the 23
special wards in Tokyo which makes it like a separate city with its own
mayor and city government, but the 23 wards have to work together as
one seamless city government. Interesting reading up at
On the way to Akebanebashi Metro station we stopped off for a snapshot
of Keith and Jim with the Tokyo Tower.
Shibuya Crossing is reportedly the busiest in the world, some
10,000 people can cross this intersection in a 1-minute cycle.
For those with high bandwidth internet connections, I am making
available a 1-minute (24 Meg) video
crossing cycle. If you saw Lost in Translation
you saw this
We never did find the Ramen noodle shop we sought, but we did go for a
burger at another outlet of the place we ate in Kyoto. Jim has
eaten at Mos Burger
28 times since then and is going to sorely miss
them when he gets back to the US. In memory of Mos Burger: (and
yes, Jim wanted his own picture in front of Mos Burger)
Starbucks has their busiest store in Shibuya Crossing. This isn't
that particular store but we liked the sign.
Thought some folks would like to see this - these signs are near all
the entrances to the various highways, and show traffic delays at
upcoming street intersections and on the highways. We think they
may also show alternate routes.
That's it for tonight.