Japan Trip – Day 9 (Tokyo)

Added a few more photos to folder.

Well today we all get up to meet vocal, some people aren’t ready on time so we have to delay meet up an hour. Get a load of trains once again. This time we also get the monorail over the rainbow bridge which was pretty cool. Much smaller inside that the trains, kinda reminds me of London Underground. Arrive and we are meeting vocal at the Statue of Liberty. It’s much smaller than the other ones, guess the french cheaped out on the one they sent to Japan. Vocal isn’t around yet, so wait a few mins and he shows up. We go into a shopping centre while we decide what to do. Nice and cool inside, amen for air con. Is a big dragon inside advertising the new Monster Hunter game, obviously grab some photos of it. Grab some food, a few of us try the local BK, Whoppper is best thing I’ve tried from a western outlet so far. Rest go eat some Japanese stuff. Afterwards girls want to go shopping so holo and jecht go off with them. Vocal stays with us and asks what we want to go see, he suggests a few things in the local area, so we set off to go see them.

First stop is the life sized Gundam, Vocal knows a far bit about it, so we basically get a guided tour. Looks cool as fuck, take a load of photos. Apparently there’s a Gundam amusement park on the roof too, but we decide against going there in favour of seeing more stuff. Next up we start heading to the Toyota car showroom, vocal say’s it’s the largest one in the world, so might as well go see it. Before we get there we decide to take a side trip into Venus Fort.

Venus Fort is a shopping centre aimed at woman, inside it kinda looks like France I guess, with columns and French street names. The ceiling is pale blue with clouds on it, as you walk it looks like the clouds are moving too, pretty nice stuff. Loads of shops, we decide to stop for a crepe and ice cream at one of them. So sit down for a while and talk about stuff with vocal. Decide we best move on if we want to go see more stuff, so carry on. Grab a quick look at the fashion show that’s currently on in the centre, don’t stay for long then head outside again. Still hot as hell outside, don’t know why I keep expecting it to have cooled down. Make our way over to the Toyota showroom.

Quick look around the showroom and vocal convinces us to try out the driving machines. Basically you queue up and get a go on a driving sim, you get 2minutes or something in two modes. First mode is a basic car with no assisted stuff, hard to drive. Second time they turn on all the abs, trc and stuff so you can see the difference. We wait in line and watch the people before us. Some guy gets like SSS rank or something ridiculous, suspect he goes there daily. Some loli goes up next and she just puts her foot on the accelerator and goes for it. Doesn’t touch the brake for 4mins, hits pretty much every wall going, want to laugh but suspect I’ll be just as bad.

TT goes up, gets vocal to film him doing it. Stefl goes in 2nd machine, somehow manages to score worse in the assisted mode than unassisted mode. Vocal takes his turn along side teg, Vocal manages an S rank on assisted mode and comes 4th overall. Teg gets SS rank on assisted but comes 8th overall, vocal beat him on speed. I get to go last with everyone telling me how to do stuff while standing next to me. Not distracting at all. Totally fail the first round and get a D, manage to redeem myself with an S for 2nd round though. Time to go meet up with everyone else now, so off we go. Spot a pikachu car on way out, grab a few photos. Walk back to first shopping centre, get there a few mins late, find rest of group, girls still shopping… again.

So minus two of the girls we head over to Tokyo TV building, pay the 500 yen to go up to the 24th floor ball and look around. No one is impressed with it, way out is confusing, end up walking around the entire floor to get to the back of the queue for the elevator. End up getting split up mulitple times. Eventually all meet back up outside first shopping centre with holo having to go off and rescue odin and stefl.

Decide to go for food while girls shop, go to some raman place up on top floor, turns out to be best raman so far, soup actually has a nice flavour to it, and is a decent sized portion. No English menus but guy there speaks perfect English, so no trouble ordering anything. Eat up and go meet the girls. Tell them how awesome Venus Fort was compared to this place and tell jecht about the gundam 😀

Next on our hit list is Tokyo Tower, is a fair bit away so monorail back across the bridge and a train later we set off walking there. Girl group lags behind again, so rest of us carry on. Get there, is a huge queue, some of us get another crepe and then we queue up. Some guy comes talks to vocal, apparently we are queuing for wrong thing. So go to right place and get served straight away. We have to pay to get to the 150 metre floor, and if we want to go up to the 250 metre floor we have to pay again once we get up to 150m. Not cool! We do it anyway. Get to top floor, vocal tries to take some photos, but we can all feel the tower swaying as we stand up there, so he can’t get any decent pics. Unimpressed we go back down to the 150m floor. Spend a couple of hours here, vocal tries to get some more photos, tower is swaying less down here, but the lights are reflecting on the glass so much it makes it hard to get a good picture. Teg jumps a few timers on the glass for to test it’s safe, better safe than sorry after all. It’s almost closing time now so we go down and I grab some more sweets for family. We go outside get a few pictures outside and then go back to station. Arrange to meet up with vocal tomorrow so he can show me his favourite places in Akihabara and he heads off home before his trains stop. I head back to hostel, I really want to cool down and shower, everyone else goes off for more food. Teg also decides he cba to go eat, so we both stop by a 7/11 and get some snacks then back to hostel. Stay up way to late again chatting on IRC to rest of Doki staff.

Japan Trip – Days 7-8 (Tokyo)

Well did a bit less these two days so I’ll combine them. Day 7 we was all pretty tired and ended up sleeping in really late. When we finally got up and went out we caught a load of trains to Harajuki. Teg, holo, sara, jecht+gf and sakura went off somewhere to do stuff and rest of us went shopping. I went off on my own looking for anime shops. Found none, walked for fucking miles so mad. All I did find was a sex shop and an NGE shop, which I didn’t go in, cos the show sucks big floppy donkey dick. So after much walking around it was time to meet back up with everyone and go for food. Today’s dinner was to be okonomiyaki. Basically they give you the stuff for it and turn on a hot plate and you cook it yourself. We went for the all you can eat 1k yen each deal. Ended up swapping tables like 3 times before they stopped fucking us around. Was pretty nice, myself and stefl had 4 each and everyone else went for 3.

After that a bit of shopping, ended up going in the NGE shop after all. FML. Then we went to Caiogirls, this is basically a shop for little loli girls to buy manga. In walks myself, holo, jecht, teg, thething, stefl and odin. We start checking out all the kiddy manga and the two girls in there serving can’t keep a straight face and start laughing at us. TT ends up buying all the chibi devi manga, I buy koi x kagi and holo buys first 4 vols of chibi too. Walk out like men, proud of our purchases and carry on back to station. Jecht and holo get stopped by TV reporter interviewing foreigners. Holo can fill this in, since I managed to avoid it. See loads of kawaii school girls in sailor uniforms, is awesome. Get a few sly photos 😀

More trains and we head to the government building, first we stop by a park to look around. It’s shut. Fuck you Japan, what’s with all this shutting early? And a park? Come on. We lol at the sign, it’s like “no fishing, no music, no ball games, no bikes, no alcohol, no smoking, no tenting, no cooking, no dogs, no photos”. So yeah, pretty much “no fun”, and they want you to pay to enter. Pretty much worse park ever. Bit of raging and left for government building. Free to go up, which is nice. Is 40+ floors up, great views, we stay up there for a bit. TT and stefl start fucking around and stefl is all “wait till we get outside”. We finally leave and stelf is like “we are outside now” and TT runs off, stelf chases after him and they run behind this pillar. TT starts trying to catch the pillar and fails, throws his bags up to the path and then there’s a splash as he goes into a hidden pond he’s spotted and tried to avoid. Followed shortly by stefl who also didn’t see it. I stand there loling at them both along with some Japanese people who also saw the epic fail as it happened. They come out and start walk around making nice wet sounds as they move. Get some photos of them nice and wet and teg, stefl and I head back to hostel after getting a KFC. Rest go to some all you can eat cake shop that was apparently shut. Holo can fill in this part.

Train back to Ueno has me and teg in stitches. Stefl is sat between two girls and falling asleep. He keeps leaning like 30 degrees either way and then sitting back up, both girls get off. Probably not even their stop. Eventually get back and I go to sleep.

Wake up, day 8. Apparently loads of shit happened after I went to bed last night, someone else can fill this in. Today’s plan is to visit otome road, check out the BL and go up sunshine 60. So train it to where ever otome road is and decide on food. Jecht recommends a place so we go there. Is a load of signs there and it says it’s on the first floor, so we get in the lift. The lift is like totally smooth, feels like we are going no where. We open the door and we have go back out into the street we just came from. Apparently 1st floor in Japan actually means ground floor. Hoping no one saw us we go around the corner and find the entrance. Get some seats and guy bring over some iced tea for us. Is a cup thing in font of us so I pour a cup. Teg is like “that’s for receipts”… oops. It starts leaking all over and they move us to another table so I scurry away and say nothing. Don’t want to look like dumb foreigner! Uneventful meal for the most part, we keep ordering more food and they have to keep taking the bill away and fixing it. Leave there and head off to otome road. Sakura keeps asking Japanese people where it is, some of them really don’t want to help us find it, we eventually find it though. Arrange to meet up in a bit. So myself and teg wander off and head down into the local mandarake, turn around instantly at seeing all the BL and leave. Wonder around see nothing but BL. We are sad, resort to checking out all the side streets and fucking success we find a doujin shop. 5k yen later I walk out with 5 vols of loli porn, so pleased. Guy covered it all up in modesty covers for me too lol. Pretty good shop, lots of stuff in there I could’ve bought, I’m sure the SM stood next to us agreed.

Wonder around a bit more, guy buy some charger and headphones, grab a drink. Spot a bench… starting to think they didn’t exist. Head back to meeting place, go inside family mart, buy a miku ichigo cake and a melon ice lolly. Lose my little miku that came with my cake straight away, so sad. Wait around for 15mins. Holo comes to find us later than expected and drags us off to some shop. Inside sakura and sara have changed into LS cosplay school uniforms. Wander around some more, go sit in park, loads of cats, girls pet em, finally decide to move on to sunshine 60. Step in cat sick. FML again.

Have to pay at this one, but it’s also 60 floors up this time. Better view here, is even some platforms that you can get right up on and look down all the way below. Stay up there for ages. Take a load of photos, get a drink and then notice my phone is missing. Apparently I’d left it on a platform while chatting with jecht. Sakura comes with me to the desk to help ask if anyone handed it in, and success, someone did. So glad I didn’t loose it, totally would’ve been stolen back in UK, Japanese people so much nicer! Finally leave the tower as it’s closing for the night and we decide on Chinese again for tea, eat loads and go back to sleep. Meeting vocal again tomorrow so we have to get up early!

Japan Trip - Day 6 (Kyoto / Osaka / Nara / Tokyo)

So get up and get our shit together need to catch early train so we can get everything done. To train station we go and on to the main Kyoto station. Stash our bags and stuff in lockers there and then grab a shinkansen to Osaka. Get there and we head for the aquarium, get inside and split up since there’s quite a lot of people in here and hard to stay as a group. See some otters, dolphin, seals, penguins, fish fish and more fish, some crabs and sharks.  Get a bit wet in the stroke the fish section some how. Go to toilet, once again no dryers in the toilet, so just got to deal with been wet for now. Finish looking around with nearly two hours left before we planned to meet back up. So we decide to go get food from the nearby mall. I try dry off in the sun for a bit first then we go inside. Go straight to the central food court. Decide to be brave and try something exotic. So I go for KFC, odin goes for subway and teg goes for KFC too. Finish up, look around the shops, they are crap, nothing really catches my eye. Go back outside and sit on a bench. A street performer starts doing his stuff nearby, so I go sit on the floor in the front with all the kids. He’s pretty good and entertaining. Eventually the crowd gets a bit bigger  and he starts to involve them in the routine, and then holo comes to collect me to meet up with everyone else. So I miss the end of it 🙁

Holo says he has found taiyaki stall, so we go there, time to cross something else off my list of things I wanted to do. I decide on the chocolate one, cos red bean isn’t actually very nice. It’s really nice, so I get a 2nd one. Teg gets a 2nd one too, but decides to get red bean. Says it’s crap and doesn’t finish it. Dodged a bullet there. I go buy 2 more chocolate ones for later on and then we go catch a load more trains to go feed deers in Nara.

Once we get to Nara we head up the street to the park looking for deer and spot our first one just casually chilling on the side of the road. Soon after 3 more are crossing at a zebra crossing which amuses us. Then we reach the park and go inside. Is a few more deer here and then walk on over to us. We don’t have much food with us, since we expected there to be a guy selling deer cakes or something. But since it’s afternoon and this is Japan everything is already closing. So we settle for giving them random food we have with us. Jecht’s gf has some in a bag which she starts feeding them, and the biggest deer decides to just rip the bag out of her hands and shake it till food comes out. We all back off a bit. Another deer snatches TT’s bag that doesn’t have any food in it. Then holo starts to feed them some left over taiyaki, decides to keep moving with it and pretty much gets chased around by 4 deer while we all lol at him. Running out of time now, so we need to get back to the JR line and catch a train back to Tokyo. Nara > Kyoto and grab our bags.

Then shinkansen back Tokyo. Train back is so embarrassing. We spot a girl sat to our left and forward, she’s playing a game on her phone. Then she leaves her bag and bottle of tea behind and goes. Comes back a while later and takes her bag and goes again. She’s gone for quite some time, so we assume she has gone. Jecht decides her tea looks nice so grabs it and comes back with it. A little while later I notice she’s back in her seat and looking around at us. At this time holo is drinking her tea, so teg and I are like er… she’s back and looking. Holo tries to hide the evidence in between the seats, there’s not even a gap there but he tries to force it in. Meanwhile I can’t stop laughing. Teg spots her learn around and take a photo of us all. So probably a photo of us on some Japanese site now tagged as the guys whole stole my tea. So embarrassing and can’t stop laughing. Eventually the girl who is selling stuff comes back through the coach and sara buys another bottle of tea for the girl, but jecht doesn’t want to give it to her, cos he feels no guilt lol. So his gf is like “geez, I’ll do it, how do I say sorry in Japanese”. Goes over says sorry, points at us all and gives her the bottle of tea. Apparently she looked pretty surprised about it, but she drank it and thankfully got off at the next stop. Rest of the trip was uneventful save for having to call the hostel and explain we’d be late arriving for checkin.

Get back to hostel late, checkin, is a problem with the rooms, they have double booked up one of our rooms, so holo, jecht and gf’s have to sleep in the owners house for the night. Several of us go out for a chinese, it shuts at 1am, so we have an hour still, get there and the guy recongises holo from 2 years ago. Stefl tries Kanades favourite food, the mapo tofu. Rest of us go with rice dishes. Eat my first ika in my rice… Not quite as bad as I expected, but not exactly awesome. Guy stays open past 1am for us to finish and then we leave and it’s time for bed.

Comment by Stefl1504 – “Nyan~”

Japan Trip - Day 5 (Kyoto / Osaka)

Well myself and teg get up at 5, a few others wake up too. Then after much stalling we decide to just go on ahead. So we set off for the temple from Yuru Yuri. Pass the now infamous panda and go looking for the side road we need. Almost miss the turn. Map shows five side roads, we see one. A short uphill walk later past the usual metric tonne of vending machines and small food shops (and another love hotel) we arrive at the entrance to the temple. Take some photos then head inside. Get to gatehouse 1 minute after opening time and pretty much have the shrine to ourselves. Head over to the “I can fly… You can fly?” YY platform and get a look at the vast array that is the cityscape. Seriously, it’s massive, with mountains around it. Try out the panoramic mode on my phone, doesn’t come out very well for some reason. Find a dead cicida, take some photos, then carry on up the stairs. Go all the way around taking photos of everything. Get to the other side of the shrine and we can hear the others talking. Look across and there they are on the far side. Holo takes a few pics of teg and myself with his 50x zoom. Next we come across the water shrine part. There’s 3 lots of water coming down and some cups on handles under UV lamps for you to use. I go up… Bless my hands I suppose, then try drinking some. Not exactly tasty, kind of metalic. We carry on check out a pagoda. Find a dirty pond with a turtle and some koi in it. Pretty much at the exit now so we check the map and time and go look at some other stuff.

Short walk away we find another pagoda, this one is 45m tall and each layer is 6m a side. Not a tourist place we figure, since it’s not open. So on to next one on map. Don’t have much time before train, so only get a quick glimpse at stuff. Then back to hostel to meet up.

Loads of trains later we arrive in Osaka. Head for some castle there. It’s basically rebuilt since it was destroyed. Have to start on top floor and work way down. Top floor is open so can see for miles from the platform. Check out the floors below, kinda meh. References to people from Oda Nobuna all over the place amuses me. Anyway we are done, go outside. The stairs up and down have a fine mist been sprayed on them, so myself, teg, sakura and stelf stay under it for a while to cool down. We are pretty sure the staff are trying to make us move because the mist keeps getting thicker. By time we move you can no longer see the bottom of the stairs and people are using the wrong stairs.

Go straight ahead to some benches and sit for a while, octpus stall in front of us, stelf eventually gives in and goes to get it. Myself and teg go grab a cola flavoured shaved ice. Really nice considering it’s pretty much ice with juice squirted on.

Odin phones asks where we are, tell him go straight from exit. Spot him and TT they look around, I wave and shout, they go away. We see them sit at some benches 100m away, shrug and carry on eating. Eventually we all meet up at us. Some old guy who speaks a bit of english and chinese starts to talk to us. He ends up showing us the way to our next stop, the peace museum. Not much to see, some videos and WW2 stuff. So we don’t stay for long.

Next stop was a ferris wheel. We get there and it’s 8 stories up on top of a building. Grab our tickets and get group photo taken then get split into 3 and get on. Night time so can see loads of the city lights. Osaka looks the shit. So much stuff to do here it’s crazy. One building next to us has 8 floors and each floor looks to be dedicated to a different thing. Get all the way around and it’s time to head back to Kyoto. Was sad to see Osaka go. Would be an awesome place to live.

Get back to Kyoto and go to get food at same place as first night. Get there and are told there’s no room at the inn for Virgin Mary. Walk across road and ask at another place. Same deal. 3rd one we try has plenty of room and the food turns out to be really nice.

Back to hostel and pack for tomorrow, have to check out by 9. Plan is to check out, go back to Osaka for the day, then Nara and back to Tokyo.

Japan Trip - Day 4 (Kyoto)

Edit: Added some YY temple pics to folder.

Expect a massive photo dump somewhere at the end of trip with hundreds of photos. It’s just to much trouble to sort out details and upload them atm.

Anyway, day 4. Kyoto. Wake up, still tired. We all head out and take a minute walk to the Freshco to buy breakfast. For the 3rd time the trip so far I drop a fuckload of my money. Some Japanese woman spots it and gives it back, thankfully. We all head down to the river outside the hostel and eat our food. Is quite a few large fish swimming around in the river, and several wild goldfish! Japanese woman keep biking past with these massive visors on their heads and crazy sleeves on their arms, it’s hot as hell but apparently they don’t care.

Confirm our plans for the day. Visit Golden Pavilion and then go up a fake mountain and pet some monkeys, cool.

So we catch a few trains, get on a bus and get dropped off at the GP. It should be mentioned that Japanese buses are run quite differently that from in the UK. Apparently here you get on in the middle of the bus or the back and then at your stop you go to the front to get off, and pay while doing so. So we get to the GP and take the walk up to the paying gate. Some of the group get dragged to one side and are not allowed in since they are still eating stuff. Myself, stelf and teg go on in and we are directed to a small viewing area. It’s a green lake with the GP in the background, so we take a load of photos. Part way through I’m wondering what the loud noise next to me is, I look at the tree and there’s a freaking huge cicida sat there. The three of us take a load of photos of it and I attempt to pick it up. It makes a pissed off clicking noise and flies away. Rest of group arrives finally, get some photos of GP with us in front, spot a turtle and some dragonflies and we move on.

Not much else to see really, some wishes on paper tied to things, some incense burning, a kid throwing rocks at people and then slapping his mum in the face, pots that we stop to throw coins in, takes a me a few attempts but I get one in. You can see holo’s hand and a coin in midair in one of the photos in day 2 link 😀

Get to the exit area, grab some gifts for family, buy a melon soda from a machine, it comes with fucking ice in the cup, awesome, right? lol at the terrible English on some of the fortune machines “hard money, pay down”, and then leave.

Nip to a raman cafe nearby for dinner, it’s okay, nothing amazing though. I have shrimp tempura and udon. Kind of mortified when it turns up with the ebi floating in the soup, I’d expected it to be nice and crispy. Instead it was soaked and was only one tiny shrimp in a load of batter. We eat up and TT decides to throw the contents of his bowl down himself and on the floor. After apologising to the lady we leave and TT goes to buy a new T-shirt.

Spend far to long buying crap from a near by shop, myself, teg, sara and lucy get bored and start walking towards a rock garden… It’s 15mins away but takes a bit longer since the group catches up finally and we keep stopping.

Get in rock garden, it’s a world heritage site, we have to take our shoes off as we go in, it’s a lot smaller than I’d imagined it to be. There’s only like 15 stones in the garden, and then a really humid grove off to the side, and a water shrine thing around the back for washing hands and praying. We don’t stay for long since people want to go see the monkey’s. We leave, grab a couple of buses and get to train station. Odin rings me and says the monkey place shuts in 30mins. So we tell him to come back to hostel. We then decide to go visit the international manga museum. Get there and it’s at last admissions so only a few of us go in cos not worth it. Seriously, the fuck Kyoto? Everything closes so early. Wait outside, lol at the “beware angry caterpillar they bite” or something sign. Then go for dinner at nearby cafe. It’s a curry house, and food is quite good.

Some of the group leave while the rest finish up. After we finish we go out and are told that TT and the others are up in some chapel for a wedding. The fuck? This woman comes down and tells us all to go up, we go up, we come right back down, NFI what just happened. Outside now and there’s some drama over a door been broke, still no idea what it was about, but the woman that worked there spoke really good English apparently. Anyway, we leave and head back into Kyoto. End up walking back for some reason, spot an anime shop on other side of road so we nip over. I say nip over but the road is massive with shops all over the place and lined with lantern-ish lights. Anyway the others heading back to hostel. Sakura buys half the shop and we leave. Head back to hostel, get back before holo’s group somehow and I go to bed cos I’m tired as fuck. Day 5 when we get up, with Osaka on the cards, main aim to visit the Kanon bench and visit a castle. Before that teg and myself decide to wake up at 5am to go visit the shrine from Yuru Yuri, so set alarm for that and go sleep.

Japan Trip - Day 3 (Kyoto)

Also added a little of my experiences on day 2 to previous post.

Day three, woke up in capsule inn. Managed to get around 4 hours sleep, felt tired as hell still. Another couple of onigiri from a 7/11 for breakfast and then sakurahime drops the bombshell that she left her railpass ticket in the first hostel, so of half the group goes to collect that. Myself, teg, tt, odin and stelf wonder around akihabara and end up in a Starbucks. Fuck I hate coffee, yet I got some anyway (brushed my teeth 3 times and can still taste it), we decide on leaving at 10, cos we expect holo to be late… Odin wonders off. We head to meet up point, and sure enough no holo, and also now no odin. Holo group finally gets back and teg sets off on Operation: Odin Rescue, to return a short while later with odin. Then spent ages either catching trains and looking where to exchange our railpass for the shinkansen.

Got that sorted and started the 2hour+ shinkansen ride to Kyoto, during which time odin notices he has left his bag in a locker in Akihabara, so had no gear with him for the 4 days we’d be spending in Kyoto/Osaka. Appears that someone has bad luck every day so far and today odin rolled it. Anyway, we get to the hostel in Kyoto and split into 3 groups, jecht no kanojou and sara head off for some shopping, odin heads off in search of new clothes and the rest head off to the main shrine in Kyoto.

At the shrine we stayed together for a while and gradually in true horror film fashion we kept losing people. Loads and loads of arches lined the path up to the top, and for some reason there was loads of cats too. The entrance part consisted of a 1000 and 1 ways to make you part with cash, mostly in the form of fortune stuff and prayers. I did spend 200 yen on a prayer, I’m sure we can find a photo of it some where… Anyway by the time we got to the top only 5 remained (teg can fill in what happened while they got lost) and I was totally fucked… and after all the mishaps earlier in the day it was dark by the time we got up there. So we didn’t stay long. Walked down in the dark, saw no yokai.

Left the shrine and ran into the rest of the group right as we left the exit of the shrine. Go to catch a train back to Kyoto and train is delayed so we end up walking a bit. Train > hostel > brief walk later and we end up with 5 of us in a soba stall. Holo can fill in this part, since I’ll be damned if I can recall what the food was. All I know is that I totally failed at chopsticks and that myself and jecht both had seconds 😡

Leave after a nice meal and decide to walk back a different way. Spot a love hotel on way back and a nice lady of the night hard at work. Walk back took slightly longer than expected as we ended up walking through a small shrine and taking the long route (AKA got lost) and culminated in teg riding a panda. Yes a panda.

Japan Trip - Day 2 (Tokyo)

here will add details later, phone + shit wifi is a pain. – ix

My body clock was pretty messed up, and I woke up at 1AM, 2AM and 4AM. At 5AM I decided that I couldn’t sleep any longer, and woke up. I had some melonpan and dumplings for breakfast. We had to wait until 9AM before we could leave because we couldn’t check out before then.

At 9AM, we left our suitcases in Tokyo Hostel and checked out. We had packed 4 days worth of clothes with us for tonight’s Capsule Inn and 3 nights at Kyoto, since we weren’t going to drag our suitcases all the way to Kyoto and back!

The only item on the agenda for the day was Akihabara. We all went to Minowa Station, stopping occasionally by the shops to buy food. After arriving at Akiba, we all went to find Tenya, the place that mit recommended for lunch. Mit would be joining us later at 12PM for lunch. Once we had found Tenya, we split up into smaller groups and went our separate ways, browsing the various shops around Animate and Toranoana. It was simply impossible to stick together as a huge group, since people are interested in different things. The huge crowds in Akiba also made it difficult.

I went off with Sara, Jecht, Ruby and Sakura and we explored Animate for a while. We didn’t buy much, because we’d have carry everything around with us to Kyoto and back. All the buying will be done in future trips to Akiba.

At 12PM, everyone met back in front of Tenya and waited for mit to show up. All I knew was that mit was wearing a black T-shirt, had an umbrella and was Japanese. Given that this description fit every other guy who walked past, it was quite amusing. Anyway, mit recognised us before we recognised him, so that was good. We went into Tenya and had to be split into small groups, since there was no way 12 people could be seated together (Japanese restaurants are often quite small). Tenya served tempura (given the name) and it was quite cheap and tasty.

After lunch, we split up again. Jecht, Ruby, Sakura, Stef, mit, TheThing, Sara and I went to a cat cafe called NekoJaLaLa and spent 90 minutes inside. The pricing was roughly 500 yen per 30 minutes and you had to buy a drink, which was quite cheap, thankfully. Inside the cafe, there were about 15 cats minding their own business. Before we were allowed to play with them, we had to wash our hands and read a list of rules. The top rule was “Please don’t do a cat violently”, which was rather amusing. Hopefully it was a poor English translation, and not something a previous customer had done.

Most of the cats were snoring away. Some of them woke up and became more active after we went in, since they probably knew that visitors = food! Inside the cafe, I took a load of pictures. The cats were all quite fat and cute. The staff showed us how to play with the cats and how to hold the ones which allowed you to hold them. We were also able to buy tuna for the cats, which they loved.

After the cat cafe, we wandered around more shops before meeting up with the rest of the group 7PM. (Need more details on a funny story about Japanese men fapping in the toilets). We went to Akihabara Station and waited for Vocalonation, who was going to have dinner with us.

After dinner, we made our way to Capsule Inn Kinshichou. (Funny story about getting lost on the way and naked men in the showers).


Given that at the time of writing this, we have to leave and catch the Shinkansen to Kyoto, time is limited so I’ll finish expanding on the details later!


So holo covered pretty much what happened until we split up so I’ll carry on with what my few random mishaps.

After leaving everyone else odin and myself went looking around some shops, I was still on a mission to obtain Mebae after all. Things kind of went to shit right away of course. First shop we come out and I lost odin, so I ended up looking around Akihabara on my own. After trekking around for a while I managed to find some shop with wall to wall eroge and hentai. It was the Holy Land. Sadly no dice on Mebae so I left empty handed again. Next shop I found was a multistory one with different things on each floor. Finally made it up to the 18+ and sure enough I found a copy of Mebae. Shop-san guy then started to ask if I spoke Japanese, and that the game would only work on Japanese computers, so I’m like “that’s fine”. Then he also gave me two free high quality posters of Mebae as well, so totally pleased with that.

Since there was another floor left I decided to go up on that too… Oh boy. This was 3D porn land. Pretty much just tits on every single DVD cover, with or without jizz on them, your choice apparently. Not wanting to look like I was embarrassed I stayed and looked around for a bit *cough*

My next epic fail was going in a shop that had figurines and seeing a sign that said there was more upstairs. Apparently it meant the 3rd floor, because I walked into some offices or something on the 2nd floor and got a few questioning looks. Even worse I got to the 3rd floor and it was full of crap figures I had no interest in >:(

A few times I walking into random cafe and had to get out before I was captured. An experience on the first night of a random maid in the street trying to get myself and teg into a cafe and then crying when we said no and begging us made me want to avoid being mean to a kawaii maid again.

As holo said we had already met up with mit, later on we met up with vocalonation too. Turns out vocal is the coolest motherfucker in Tokyo and knows pretty much every place to go. So we went to some restaurant for food with him. Not sure what it was, basically meat/fish in crispy stuff with shredded green stuff. Helpful, right?

After dinner we made our way to the capsule inn, vocal went home with plans made to meet us later in the week after we get back from Kyoto. Mit got dragged along to the capsule inn with us, since it saved him traveling home I guess.

Inn was fairly uneventful for me, some random western guy brushing his teeth kept eying up my phone I’d left in the bathroom on charge and kept moving closer to it until he was at the sink right next to it. Went for a shower in the public bath, received a critical hit from catching an eye full of cock on my way in. Didn’t stay long and went back to capsule to watch anime for an hour or two before going to sleep.


Japan Trip - Day 1-ish

Better photos later, for now here’s our first view of Japan once the cloud broke.

Guess I’ll start the ball rolling in this. My first day was spent traveling down to London. All easy so far. Found hotel, spent hours waiting for TheThing to arrive. He arrived. We ate. Smooth sailing still.

Now bear in mind I’m from a small town, so I’m used to just walking to get places.

With that in mind myself and TT set off walking. An hour and 20 minutes later we have walked God knows however many miles around Heathrow and found no way in. So I shout and ask some cop who is on the other side of the fence. His reply? “You guys are making me dizzy walking around.” Thanks for offering to help earlier rather than just watching. Dickface.

Anyway, finally got inside, bumped into Holo and Sarasmith at checkin, followed by former Doki staff Jecht and his gf. Teg not here yet. So we head on in, get ripped off in duty free, board plane. Teg not here yet. Pretty much everyone is now on the plane and some Japanese woman is eyeing up Teg’s seat. Teg finally arrives 3 minutes before they close the gate. He can fill in the details later on this.

Flight is uneventful, highlight is when TT spots some kid colouring in a precure book. We land, holy crap my ass is hurting from sitting down so much.

Soon as we leave the plane/walkway we are hit by a wall of heat and humidity. Anyway, immigration, get bags, Teg gets short changed 200 yen on his very first purchase in Japan and then we go looking for odinigh and sakurahime. Supposed to be meeting them at starbucks so that’s where we go. No one is sure what sakurahime looks like, so just randomly shout sakura into the shop. No one replies so we mill around a bit. I get my photo of odin out and I’m like “this is who we are looking for”. Jecht points right past me and is like “so him”. Sure enough odin is sat right near the door with sakurahime 😀

Anyway train to hostel we are staying at, take a load of photos, saw first sailor uniform school girl, hit up McD’s for food first then arrived at hostel over an hour before checkin… Decide to go to Akihabara… So we head on down to Akihabara, main aim being to pick up a sim card so we can actually get in contact with each other. So at this point nearly everyone piles into a tiny phone shop, cos why the fuck not? Myself and teg decide to go looking for porn instead and just wonder off checking out where the shops are.

So I grabbed a couple of railgun s2 mousemats/desktop mats and then found a new/wrapped copy of Tanukisoft’s VN “Mei Shoujo”. Success. My night was pretty much complete with that purchase, left me short of my main aim, a later Tanukisoft game, “Mebae”. But good enough for day one. Teg and myself decide to head on back to the hostel since we have no idea where anyone else is at this point.

So we take a walk back to where we think the station is, get there and are about to walk up to the map and see where we need to go when some random Japanese dude walks up to us and asks us where we are going. He tells us in broken English we should follow him for 2 minutes. We tag along and he takes us to another station entrance instead and leads us down to the platform we need and checks we have money on our cards to get on the train. So we thank him, thinking he was just been helpful, when he decided to bow and clasps his hands together, while saying “hungry”. We both dip into our wallets and each hand the guy a 500 yen coin. Apparently this is really fucking good cos he screams “woooooowwww” at us and then grabs and shakes teg’s hand while repeatedly saying thank you to us. We proceed to get the train back to near hostel, grab some onigiri and some piss weak cold tea from a vending machine and that pretty much sums up day one-ish.

By Holo:

While in Akibahara, Ix and Teg split off from us and went and did their own thing. The rest of us wandered around Akiba a bit, checking out various shops etc. We decided to go to Big Echo Karaoke as the final thing to do that day.

While the pricing for the actual karaoke wasn’t that expensive (320 yen for an hour or something), it was compulsory to buy a drink and all the stuff on the menu had extortionate price tags… In the end the food costed more than the karaoke! Anyway, the rest of us all got into a room and surprisingly, we all fit in. The room was pretty big. Anyway, the machines that you chose songs on required song title/artist name entered in hiragana, so only Sakura and I were able to use it effectively. The songs had subtitles on the screen, but they were also in hiragana/kanji/furigana, so you had to be able to read to sing. Mostly people could only sing the first verse or so, because OP/EDs don’t sing the whole song, but the karaoke does the full version. The music video they played often had absolutely nothing to do with the song, and the remix of the song played was quite strange. It wasn’t just an off-vocal version of the song that would be released on the CD single.

So we messed about for an hour, before the staff rang us on the phone and told us time was up. We quickly scoffed down whatever food was left and left. We went back to the station and returned to Minowa Station. We did some shopping for tomorrow’s breakfast, which basically involved cleaning out the entire supermarket of melonpan. At this point some of us were hungry, and some weren’t, so the ones who were fine went back to the hostel first. TheThing, Stef, Sara and I were hungry and we found a cheap ramen place outside the station. After that, we also went back to the hostel.

Everyone was pretty tired after everything, so we didn’t do much and all went to bed.