A Note From Our Guest Editor*, Modupe: Say it with me now, J-A-P-O-W! Japow! I’m not the best snowboarder out here on these slopes, far from it, but I’m always up for an adventure. My riding friends have talked and talked and talked some more about heading out of the country and getting a true taste of that legendary Japanese powder. But I can only take so much jibber jabber! So I packed my bags and snowboard and headed out on a solo trip. After properly busting my butt on the Nagano piste, I finally had two days to quickly check out Tokyo.
To say that I had a limited amount of time would be putting it lightly; I basically had 48 hours in Tokyo. Such a splendid, bustling metropolis definitely deserves a more insightful and dedicated visit but discovering every nook and cranny in Tokyo just wasn’t in the cards for this trip (I promise there’s a decent explanation to follow in my next post!). Yet, I did give some thought to how I wanted to utilize my time in Tokyo. This go-round, I chose to TRULY get lost. No books, no guides, no recommendations. I walked outside my door, turned right and just started walking. And what I found was a sublime culture of convenience! In no particular order, the highlights:
A delectable bakery in Meguro called Gentille. The most fattening aromas drifted out of this little spot, and like Jerry to his beloved cheddar cheese, I floated on in and annihilated every pastry in sight.
Conveniently placed vending machines that dispense hot and cold beverages can be found throughout the city. However, you’d be hard pressed to actually find anyone eating or drinking in the streets.
Breathable bag-for your head-that’s handed to you when trying on clothes? Genius! Gentlemen, you’re going to have to ask the women in your lives as to why this is so clutch.
I can’t speak or read Japanese. But what I can tell you is that this panel, in the public restroom, had a button to warm up your rump, wash your derrière and simulate ‘flushing’ noises. I just can’t…
Rush hour. The germaphobe in me nearly had a grand mal seizure.
Bar Tram, a fresh cocktail bar located in Shibuya. Guaranteed great, albeit lubricated, time.
Ramen! In all honesty, I don’t have any suggestions for the ‘best’ places to eat. So unless you’re a ramen aficionado, just start eating and don’t stop! Eventually, you’ll figure out the good, the bad and the evil.
Mt. Fujisan, very rarely referred to as just Mt. Fuji by the Japanese.
Peep the nose! When you get a little too high off of the prospects of Spring…
Not to be mistaken for the ever so popular cherry blossoms, these stunning plum blossoms bloom a few weeks prior to the cherry blossoms. If you’re not too keen on the idea of the commotion or coin sucking frenzy that cherry blossom season brings, try visiting Tokyo beforehand. You won’t be disappointed.
Hold the latte! I loved trying matcha tea for the first time, it’s basically whisked ground green tea but with a steeper price tag.
Never met a sunset I didn’t love.
Tokyo’s allure remains a mystery to me. Perhaps one that I may never actually pinpoint. The controlled chaos of one of the most technologically advanced cultures I’ve ever witnessed juxtaposed with some of the oldest ancestral traditions I’ve ever seen, has me craving more. I haven’t even skimmed the surface, not in the least. There are so many more ways for me to be consumed by Tokyo. But, until we meet again, Arigato Gozaimasu!
This post originally appeared on Modupe’s blog HERE. Stay tuned for more of her adventures to come all month long and in the meantime, be sure to follow her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, too!
Psst…For another view of Japan, don’t miss “Loud Japan, Quiet Japan” by Kathryna Hancock on page 156 of our current issue Darling No. 17!
*The views and opinions expressed by Darling’s Guest Editors are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official views or position of Darling Magazine.
Images provided by Modupe Sonuyi
I love Tokyo! This post made me really miss it. I’ve been to Japan more than ten times, but have only been to Tokyo once. Would love to visit again – except my parents prefer the smaller cities and less hectic areas of Japan.