Dispatches: Walking Tokyo
Condensing a little to finish up finishing out that trip to Japan….
Our second day in Nagaizumi dawn cold but clear. I got up early and headed out for a walk in the neighborhood.
As I was walking I looked left and *boom* there was Mount Fuji in the distance. Since the previous day was cloudy, we didn’t know how close we were. But it was pretty much right there.
Gary and I had breakfast and check out. Today would be a shoot-and-travel day. We headed back to the facility and finished up the “to shoot” list we had started the previous day. Getting some of the local team on the roof to get Mount Fuji in the background was key to anchoring this set of photos to visually show were the facility was.
While Gary worked, I grabbed some BTS shots. Once the shoot was done, it was time to head to Tokyo to finish out our trip. Back to the bullet train!
We arrived in Tokyo in the late afternoon and would have roughly 36 hours there.
Tokyo is a wonderful city. Very clean and friendly. Reading the travel websites, you would think you need an advanced degree to get around. It’s not that bad. While you don’t see much English anywhere, many people do speak at least some English and, hey, it’ s people. A smile and a gesture go a long way.
That said, we mostly got around via footpower. Didn’t really navigate the train systems to much, which may have been more challenging. That first evening, we strolled around to check out the nearby neighborhood where we were staying (Bunkyō). As we were trying to decide what to do for dinner, a noodle chef, Ken, helped us out. He saw us peering in his window and came outside to show us how the ticketing system for his noodle shop works.
It was a long day and after dinner, we were exhausted. It was back to the hotel for us.
Saturday dawned sunny and bright and warm. As is my travel tradition, I awoke early and checked out the neighborhood in the daytime.
I became pretty proficient at getting coffee at 7-11, so I had a couple of those, then headed back to the hotel to pick up Gary. We were going to just take some time to photwalk Tokyo a bit, with the goal to head to Ginza.
So that’s what we did, seeing what we could see.
People pay big money to do photowalks with professional photographers. I’ve been fortunate to do such walks in places like Beijing, Shanghai, Mumbai, Cape Town and, yes, Tokyo, with such folks. Probably my favorite thing to do – strolling around, looking for the light, talking shop and checking out shops.
We figured we walked a good six miles that day, back and forth. After a brief rest at the hotel, we headed back out for dinner.
We eventually settled on a restaurant because…well, just because. We couldn’t decipher the menu and just figured we’d wing it.
That was a good call, though. It’s hard to really explain the whole experience, but we sat down at a small table in a small restaurant. There were about 15 people in there, and we just started to pointing to what other people were eating. An older gent who spoke some English, Sachio, said hello and helped us order. Pretty soon, our table was filled with different grilled fishes, noodles, and rice. Other tables even shared their dishes with us, all with smiles on their faces for the two Westerners.
It was a pretty incredible evening and a nice way to end our trip. We would fly home the next day, bringing an end to our Asian excursion. It was a great week in China and Japan, but Christmas was coming, and it was time to get back to the Great State of New Jersey!
(c) Mark Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | 2016