Fast paced. Always entertaining. Complex. Cultural. Formal. Yet sometimes not.
Beer! Having fun. Being serious when need be – Really serious.
Visually always a surprise, a twist to the norm – a welcome change.
Structured yet not.
I was very surprised to find Cables instead of Wifi in the rooms in the hotels I had lived in.
I packed pairs of fashionable 4.5inches to wear, only to regret on my first trip. Pavements can be hilly and not very well maintained (Possibly because of the recent 3-11 earthquake?). In fact I didn’t see many of the girls wearing too much of that height. Silly me. Sensible heights, still fashionable.
Cabs are definitely expensive. Food gets cheaper only as you veer further away from the business district (Normal).
Combini food is good! Fast food at much affordable prices for a quick lunch. Enough choices to not bore the casual/shorterm visitor.
Really good and luxurious bentos going for half price, Gourmet Supermarket – the same after 8pm.
Female magazines, always packed with a free item. The content might just be otherwise. Seemingly a aggressive marketing take to promoting brands rather than fashion.
Fashion although a form of expression, have such a free reign somehow on daily life (Excluding certain workwear desirables of course). A myraid of styles, a smorgasboard of self expression, youth and individualism. So very inspiring.
All the variety, consumer products – edible or not are always having new flavours, packaging. Free novelty gifts if you are lucky. Everything about image and presentation.
Fruits – oh so expensive, vibrantly coloured. Sometimes almost perfectly shaped and sweet fruits. How can I forget that? I struggle between convincing myself to shell out the amount for a box of strawberries. It was not a regret.
And the cultural. Shrines and Temples that brings you an immediate sense of peace and solitude. Appreciation to things old and simple. A respite away from the daily pace of city life. I miss that.
People. Sometimes distant and cold. Mainly keeping to themselves. Sometimes suddenly surprising you with a friendly gesture. Moments of camaraderie. and laughters.
If you like privacy, there is a sense of that. You will never feel too lonesome being alone and feeling it. People do keep to themselves.
Customer service almost always immaculate. Sometimes not – Suprisingly I encountered that in Business Hotels.
The underground train station that throws me off my comfort zone too many times, with the complexity of changing lines and arriving to your destination. Customer service is efficient though.
Meeting nationalities I would never have thought to meet in my own country (Mongolians and Africans). Making em realise I was right smack in a huge melting pot. An eye opener.
Talking to different locals out of the work environment. Each giving me a precious memorable touch to my visit to Tokyo.
A genuine interest to finding out about my country, S.E Asia or even theirs when the opportunity or unspoken permission to be friendlier allows it.
Abrupt as it may seem.
I will end my post here.
I could go on forever.
But for now, in my travels within Asia.
Japan really does hold the very best in Taste, Sight and Sound.
In terms of elegance and the ordinary.
A country so individual in its own way.
Set on making and building its own character. A mix of the old and New. Suprisingly able to meld together.
The youth of today whom i had met and their very different take on life.
And one had told me:
“Believe in yourself. Everything that you do, you make it the best effort.”
Religion suddenly might not just be the standing hold over morale. But a self ensured challenge to just Be.
The best you can.