Imagine a crow perching a few inches next to you, an asphalted road that when hit by any vehicle’s tires, produces a melody unique to every prefecture, and a railway system that I firmly believe as the most efficient in the world.That for me is Tokyo – a magical city in the land of the rising sun, the urban bustle with a perfectly preserved cultural identity and with the busiest street scramble in the world. I have always had that vision of walking the busy streets of Tokyo with thousands of people I would not know and just nib on traditional Japanese foods at any street and in some other nameless fancy restaurants.
This trip was work-related so I had to squeeze in time to schedule going around with my boss and his family while ensuring that all our jobs were killed intact, like nailing the highest note of The Prayer.It’s my first time in Japan but it’s also the first time to get a passport and visa, ride an airplane for an international flight for majority of our young Manggahan Festival Performers – and that’s a major milestone for the rest of their lives I am sure they will forever be grateful for.
And hey we won Best Booth! 200,000 yen for the taking. And for this trip, we thank the Philippine Festival Organizing Committee for inviting Guimaras especially to Sir Jodie and Ms. Eleanor for going to our island again and again to ensure the partnership.Allow me to share some of the best moments in this trip that will be immortalized in my memory bank and I think that this short list is something not seen anywhere in the world.
There is always that icon we fancy in every city or destination – New York with the Statue of Liberty, Paris with Eiffel Tower and Beijing with the Great Wall. While Tokyo Tower or the Skytree form part of that identity, Shibuya Crossing, for me, is THE identifiable landmark in the city like with Geralt of Rivia and or Mr. Sam to Frodo Baggins in the Shire.And in this scramble, you will also visit the statue of Hachiko. You know his drama. Watch the movie.
Aside from being the only DisneySea in the world, it was a no-brainer choice for us of which resort to go to – land or sea, as it is, by record, the fastest theme park in the world to reach the 10 million visitors mark. It is that historic.Like the seven continents, it has seven ports of call as they dub it namely: Mediterranean Harbour, Arabian Coast, American Waterfront, Lost River Delta, Mermaid Lagoon, Mysterious Island, and Port Discovery.My favorite part was visiting Agrabah just like in the movies when Aladdin and Jasmine shared their carpet rides and pa-fall moments. Mapapalimos ka nang pagmamahal sa pila ng tickets so in case you want to enjoy the rides, get a fast pass ahead. We chose not to. Visiting all the ports with my cheesecake buddy, Ysa, was quite tiring already that we only waited for the late afternoon musical Christmas show.Hirap buhay seaman. If you get a good job at home, just balance your expenses and live within your means. Haha.Nakakanipis ang winter sa buhok po. hahaThis is the kind of neighborhood I would love to grow in. A whole new world. Haha!
MUSEUMS AND HISTORIC SITES
Tokyo is a smorgasbord of sightseeing and cultural delights. From the idea that I learned about young Japanese pupils only focusing on moral studies from the first three grades to scheduling your meet-ups with your brothers and sisters, Japan, as whole has so much to offer for tourists.While the railway system is considered to be the most efficient and effective in the world, you surely can not have all the chances in the world to see this in just a week. Consider neighboring cities and prefectures and you’ll realize that this archipelago is a vast universe.Museum tours are my tea cups not because I’m Tito but because I’m not stupid, I keep learning. Haha!And with the help of Sir John, a very warm welcoming Filipino who provided me a very good accommodation during my three-day extended trip, has toured me around different museums and historic sites and temples.
yet in harmony with others.
in their diversity.
Powerful in their individuality.
Stronger in harmony.
A prayer for the world.
Now and forever.
Sir John also toured me around Mori Art Museum in Roponggi. And if you get the chance to visit Japan, contact him for a very good place to stay.Private message him for the dates and number of guest to get the discount price. This unit is good for 4 and 5 guests and located near Shinjuku . Shibuya , Harajuku , Omotesando and Olympic Stadium. https://www.facebook.com/jlzinampan
AUTHENTIC JAPANESE FOOD
Japanese cuisine as a whole is famous for a reason and by its authenticity and actual taste you can say that it is really one of the best in the world – from an ordinary streetfood to traditional dishes.This is my first ramen when we arrived at our place almost midnight. My boss was all praises and even the whole team was trying to imagine what if we’ve brought this dish back home and made just an imagination for our island to now. ICHIRAN RAMEN. (We waited for more than an hour for this)And anotha one.TEMPURA.SHABUSHABU PARTYTONKATSU MELTINGSUSHIIIIIII.Usapang streetfood.TIME FOR DESSERTS.MATCHA.Kawagoe pudding. Indi siya chocolate. Milksha. #WaleyAnd don’t forget all the beers!Cheers to all these lodi in Tokyo!
At kung pang Tito and hanap mo, naglipanana ang Cat Cafe sa Japan. Like anywhere you go, you will get see one of these unique hubs. Like an economic bubble, these cafes are homely spaces, meant to evoke the feels of your space or home staged with calming interior, lighting and music.
They say people visit these cafes because first, owning cats in apartment are regulated but more importantly, it is healing industry for the Japanese people having the sense of loneliness after the fore of economic struggles in the country.
And personally being with them, (some of course grumpy at that specific time of the day), has given a deep sense of peace.
This Tokyo trip has been a dream come true for me. But the days I spent there were def not enough. Not another year will pass and I will be back there for sure because there is so much to Fall for Japan and this Fall in Japan experience was just a head-start.