Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Today started even earlier, at 4!! We wanted to get to the famous Tokyo Tsukiji fish market, and they only allow visitors at the auction site fro 5 till 6:15. We left the hotel and the streets were silent.. there were still business men catching train home from the big night the day before.. they really do party hard...

We reached the market just after 5:30, and the fish mongrels were already busy at work. There were people, carts flying around the place. Every step i took seem to be in somebody's way. The fishermen didnt seem all that welcoming like every other japanese person i've met. I guess we were in their way a little. But the experience was very interesting. The action of rows and rows of frozen fish, lots of different other seafood.. i wannnnnnnaa eat now!!

The fisherman all check the fish with their torches before the auction starts. I guess it tells you how fresh it is? not sure.. they ring the bell the entire inspection time which lasts around 5-10 min. Then the very excited auctioneer goes crazy. I have the video but its too big to post it on. Its very interesting!

Fishman ready to CHOP UP the fish

I think he was going to chop us up soon if we didnt stop taking photos and videos of what what he was doing. He shoooed us away when we stood around watching on eagerly. I guess it would be weird if people always came to our work, and took pictures of us as if we were in the zoo..

Did i Mention i LOVE seafood? =)
The early rise took its toll, and we were exhausted after the initial excitement. Hotel bed was the only thing we looked forward too. We initially planned to have breakfast at the sushi restaurants at the market, but the wait would have been atleast 2 hours!! FOrget that.. bed was much yummier at that time..

2 more hours of sleep made us fresh again. (only temporary) We started our day again. The imperial gardens was our next distination. It was pretty, and welll groomed but because you dont really get to see much of the imperial palace at all its jst another garden. I didnt really find it that fascinating but here's a photo to show 'been there done that'..

Palace building with Modern Office Sky Scrapers as background

Because we missed out on the sushi in the morning at the market, we thought we'll track down a sushi restaurant recommended by the Lonely Planet. The walk there was exhausing, and by the time we found the place I was thristy, tired and STARVING. Maybe I had high expectations.. maybe it just wasnt that good but at 2600Yen per person... the food was very very ordinary... i could probably get sushi jst as well at the supermarket!! Its probably the hype from the book, too many visitors have gone there, and their standards have dropped...

Not so WOW sushi.. and WOW prices..

After lunch, we strolled through the streets of GINZA.. this is where all the high end top designers mark their place on the Tokyo map. There were probably 5 LV stores along the GINZA street, one in each department stores.. DOIR, Channel, Gucci, Armani.. you name it they have it.. the only thing we were missing was some extra YEN to spend.. =) so.. only window shopping for us.. It was hard to see any sort of signs of 'recession'.. with people shopping like crazy.. but then again.. what does recession look like anyway.. i sure dont have a clue..

Our real cultral experience were not limited to the modern and hip japan, but also the ancient and mysterious (maybe not) Japan. We visited the Kabuki theatre and actually watched an act. The Kabuki is like the chinese opera or the wester opera, its a stage show but with no singing. Women come to watch in their tradition Kimonos. The actors speak in long and and sort of singing tone but not really singing... hmmm they had extravagant customes and stage settings. Unfortunately I was unable to take any pictures in the theatre.. so that was a shame. The story was interesting but not interesting if i retell it here so instead you can take a look of the outside of the theatre.

The Kabuki Show didnt end until 6. I wanted to do another 'Been there done that' at Akihabara, where all the electronics stores where. So we headed off to there. It wasnt all that interesting, just like all the electronic cities you see in HK and China, everyone selling electronic goods. Bt i heard the prices here are not as cheap as HK, so i didnt get anything. We had a quick and cheap dinner there and headed straight back to the hotel to rest our poor poor feet...

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