Jenna in Japan

My Random Adventures in Japan

Jenna in Japan

My Random Adventures in Japan

Jenna in Japan

My Random Adventures in Japan

Jenna in Japan

My Random Adventures in Japan

Jenna in Japan

My Random Adventures in Japan

Monday, April 28, 2014

Spring Break Part 10: Sakura in Shinjuku and Ueno


Sunday the 30th was Lauren's last full day in Japan. Earlier in the trip it looked like Lauren would leave before many sakura (cherry blossoms) would be blooming. The best days for viewing in Tokyo were supposed to be the 4th to the 6th or somewhere around there (though later I think they were moved to like the 2nd or 3rd or something). So we planned on seeing sakura on her last day here so that we would be more likely to see more.

However, they bloomed a bit earlier than that forecast and we got to see most trees in full bloom that day! Unfortunately when we went to Shinjuku Park that morning it was raining, but the trees were still beautiful.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Spring Break Part 9: Harajuku and Matsujun

On Saturday the 29th Lauren I went back to Harajuku. But first we stopped at Subway in Oimachi for lunch.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Spring Break Part 8: Odaiba


On Friday the 28th Lauren and I went to Odaiba. I've been there several times, but it was Lauren's first time. First we went to Decks. There were weird signs leading to the bathroom.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Break Part 7: Nikko

On the 27th Lauren and I went to Nikko, which is famous for the elaborate Toshogu Shrine. Unfortunately the Yomeimon gate is under renovations and covered up. That gate is usually what is shown in pictures of Toshogu Shine so I didn't know if it was really worth going or not. But it's under construction until 2019, I've wanted to go to Nikko for a while, and we hadn't gone to Kyoto or any other culturally touristy place yet, so we went.

Lauren found out about a good train pass online. It's called the 2 Day Nikko pass and it includes the round-trip train fare from Asakusa to Tobu-Nikko Station and unlimited bus rides in Nikko. It was only 2,600 yen (It's now 2,670 because of the tax increase on April 1st.). We were only going for a day trip but it's good for two days so it would still be good if you spent the night in Nikko.

We were pretty rushed to make it to the station on time, but we got to Asakusa Station just in time to find the office to buy our tickets. The woman who helped was was super efficient. She sold us our tickets, gave us some brochures, and explained a lot of information very well very very quickly! So we made it onto the 10:40 train just in time. We were lucky because the next train that we could have used with that pass wasn't until 12:40! Though I think if that had happened we just would have paid a bit extra and taken the limited express train at 11. You can still use the 2 Day Pass but have to pay an extra fare.

The train took about two hours and twenty minutes, but the train wasn't too crowded and it was a pleasant ride, though I kind of half slept part of the time.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Spring Break Part 6: Akihabara


On Wednesday the 26th we returned to Tokyo. We had stayed up late the night before so we didn't leave my apartment until almost noon.

We took the red train line from my apartment to Hamamatsu Station. It was rainy and gross out, but Lauren took a few pictures of the view from the train.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Spring Break Part 5: Sakura and Color Changing Dolphins


On Tuesday the 25th Lauren and I went to downtown Hamamatsu. I had eaten a late breakfast or something so I wasn't very hungry, but Lauren got potato butter corn ramen for lunch. I just had some gyoza.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Spring Break Part 4: Sushi, Shopping, and Spocha


We spent the 22nd through the 25th in Iwata and Hamamatsu. I had to move to my new apartment on the 23rd and then take care of paperwork stuff on the 24th.

The above picture is what I had for breakfast on the 22nd. It was sakura peach tea and corn bread. It obviously wasn't cornbread like in America. It was bread with whole pieces of corn it it. The tea wasn't great but I enjoyed the bread.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spring Break Part 3: Haneda Airport, Ginza, and the Edo-Tokyo Museum


Friday the 21st was our last day in Tokyo for a few days (I had to go back to Iwata to move apartments). Lauren wanted to go to the Edo-Tokyo Museum so that's what we did that day.

First though, Lauren had to exchange some more travelers checks. We probably could have found a closer place to take care of them, but we just went back to Haneda airport.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Spring Break Part 2: A Lolita Fashion Makeover and Starry Parfaits


Our second full day in Tokyo was spent doing lolita shopping. Lolita fashion (NOT the book) is a super cute style of fashion in Japan.

The Wikipedia article about it is pretty good: "Lolita fashion (ロリータ・ファッション Rorīta fasshon?) is a fashion subculture originating in Japan that is based on Victorian-era clothing, but the style has expanded greatly beyond Japan. The Lolita look began primarily as one of modesty with a focus on quality in both material and manufacture of garments. The original silhouette is of a knee length skirt or dress with a "cupcake" shape assisted by petticoats, but has expanded into various types of garments including corsets and floor length skirts. Blouses, knee high socks or stockings and headdresses are also worn. Lolita fashion has evolved into several different sub styles and has a subculture that is present in many parts of the world."

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Spring Break Part 1: Tokyo Skytree, a Maid Cafe, and Bigbang Karaoke


On March 18th, my best friend Lauren came to visit me in Japan again! :)  She arrived in the evening, so I spent the beginning of the day in Iwata packing and cleaning my apartment. I left in the middle of the afternoon. It was raining when I was about to leave and my umbrella had been stolen at school (probably accidentally, it's a very common umbrella). So I drove to Family Mart to buy a new umbrella. Though of course by the time I did that and actually left to walk to the station it wasn't raining anymore.