After travelling through India we flew over to visit a friend in Tokyo, Andrew. This visit was less about cultural experience and more about rest and relaxation.
Andrew as usual was an awesome host and gave us a week of fun. In the process we learnt a little more about Japan anyway. (purely accidental i assure you)
On arrival in Andrews pad in chic Shibuya, he gave us a quick tour. (i have stayed with drew before)
Drew: Here is the bed, i've made it already thought you will be exhausted. Here is the kitchen, showers, washing machine make yourselves at home.
Lim and me: *wiping tears from our eyes*
A rare moment for me and drew to play in the kitchen - it took Lim no time at all to bustle me and Andrew out of the kitchen and take over. She was overjoyed to have a kitchen again.
The joy of home cooked meals.
After only a day or two, we were healthy, happy, and ready to get out and play in Tokyo.
Busy vibrant tokyo - Shibuya intersection
First up was to one of drew's favourite sushi restaurants for some Sushi. Yum! Good japanese sushi just melts in your mouth. I'm yet to experience anything even nearly as good outside of Japan.
Drinking really nice sake out of bamboo.
Next up was a day trip to the slopes for some boarding. The week had been dumping snow, and the day was clear, bright and sunny.
Japan can offer some of the softest, silkiest powder snow in the world, and it obliged for us. One run in particular was full of beautiful powder which made the day all worthwhile.
Another favourite Japanese pass-time, is of course, karaoke. We headed out to hire ourselves a room and set about belching out some tunes.
Sarah is a friend of Andrews. Her day job is at a call centre where she takes calls from Japanese parents who'd like their children to hear English songs. They select a song, and she sings it down the line to the children.
Shes got a set of lungs and the tones of an opera singer - kind of humiliating as a karaoke partner!
Andrew and I are long time pool opponents. As per usual we both claimed complete superiority but actually had many excellent very close games.
And yet _more_ playtime, black lit bowling.
Lim's experimental bowling wasn't enough to take the crown, but it certainly shows her devotion to the sport.
We had a number of excellent dinners out with friends. Absolutely delicious, and viciously expensive for Australian at the moment. (due to the Yen's strong appreciation in recent times, and the Aud's mammoth decline).
At one point we noticed how much hair Sarah had, and Lim just had to play.
After a week of intense work and play time with us, it was hard to keep Drew awake at times.
Aside from fun and games, we also visited some of Tokyo's sights, aided as usual by a Lonely Planet.
Lim assured me the plastic hamburger wasn't distracting and she was studying hard.
First on the list was the largest fish markets in the world, Tokyo's Tsukiji.
To get into the centre of Tsukiji, you have to dodge hundreds of the metal trolley cars that are cruising around at high speed.
After seeing the wholesale distribution of a multitude of oceanic food products, we sat down for some super fresh sushi.
On the way out, we spotted a cherry blossom tree in full bloom. Cherry blossom season Japan is a very special season, and we were lucky enough to see the starts as some early blooming blossom's got busy.
On another day, Drew took us to Yoyogi park. Yoyogi park has thousands of people out to enjoy themselves, practising juggling, tight rope walking, dancing to open air DJ's, and playing music.
Japanese style really doesn't shy away from bright colours. Personally, I think its funky
Busy street full of cool shoppers & clothes
Artsy cafe for a coffee
Nearing the end of our Tokyo visit, we took a cruise through Tokyo. You can get a feel for the skyline.
When we were due to leave, we dragged our bags out to the airport, only to see that dreaded message, 'flight cancelled'. We dragged ourselves all the way back to Drews and camped out for another couple of days, until eventually rang ourselves onto a flight and made it into the air.
Now we are in London and starting the 2nd main leg of our trip, Europe.
Thats all for now, keep well folks.