Monday, December 21, 2009

8 Things I Love About Japan (Part 2)

5) Harajuku

When in Tokyo, Princess brought me shopping twice.

The first time at Shibuya, at this mall called Shibuya 109.

Now Shibuya must be a girl's shopping paradise but if it's that to a girl, it's a disaster for a guy who likes to shop. Why?

Simply because just about every shop in the entire huge mall was selling only stuff for girls. Nothing for guys. So I spent an hour or two in there just walking around with Princess and looking at the other pitiful boyfriends who were doing the same national service for their girlfriends.

It was terrible I tell you.. terrible! At one point I even wanted to go to the toilet and I couldn't find one for guys. All the toilet signs let to a single door that had the female toilet logo on it.

A mall with shopping only for girls and toilets only for girls. That's like saying "fuck off guys!". Then again maybe the gents toilet did exist but I was just too blur to find it.

After Shibuya though we went to Harajuku and there.. while they had a lot of girl things there, they also had a LOT of guy stuff.

The guy clothes they had there weren't expensive. About the same price for a shirt that you would pay in Malaysia but they were a lot nicer, had very unique designs too. If you guys are interested then comment at the end of this entry and maybe I'll post a blog entry with some of the nice shirts I got from Harajuku.

6) The Trains

I love the trains in Japan. It's not just the bullet-train but even the public transport.

The trains come so frequent and they're very very punctual. The bullet-train of course is... totally out of this world.

The commuters in Japan often eat these kind of packed meals on the train. So trying to act like local, we bought some ourselves.

Here's what's on the inside.

The food was cold but nice nevertheless.

They move so fast you feel as if you're on an airplane.

7) Hot Spring

I took the bullet-train from Tokyo to Hakone and spent the night there. Hakone is a place in the mountains not far from Mount Fuji.

It's a little hot springs resort village where people go just to relax.
We stayed in this Japanese-style resort that was really nice and had some really traditional Japanese elements to it.

The rooms for example were all Japanese-styled with tatami mats and all.

The whole point of going to that resort is just to relax, chill, eat the good food they all prepare for you and then go sit in the hot springs (Onsen).

The Onsen is a whole new different experience. There are outdoor and indoor Onsens but its divided by gender because nobody is allowed to wear anything when they go into the Onsen. Not even swimming trunks.

Being a bit shy and not wanting to compare cocks or anything like that, I opted for the private Onsen where I had the whole thing for myself. It was an outdoor one so first you go out in the open all naked when it's like 0-5 degrees out there. Then you take a quick shower in the open and then slowly go into this pond of hot water.

Being so hot you sometimes have to gradually go in toe by toe but when you do get your whole body in. It feels just great.

8) The People

The one last thing I love about Japan is the people. Even coming from a developed country like themselves, they're all so humble and obliging. A lot of the people there didn't speak English but even the ones who didn't, always made a bit effort to help us out and try to understand what we were saying in order for them to help us.

This is a picture of two of the resort staff that was with us in the Hakone resort.

I will miss Japan. I told myself though that I probably won't be able to go back there in the next 5 years because it's just too expensive. With the money you spend on a trip to Japan, you can probably afford to go anywhere else in the world.

I highly recommend that if you have the chance... go ahead and go for at least once in a lifetime. It is worth experiencing Japan.


Anonymous said...

Agree with you that one must go Japan once in their life just to explore the wonders. I miss Japan too. Wish I can have a chance to back there as well.

Accyee said...

In that last pic.. All three of the staff look totally confused.. especially the guy to the right. his expression: priceless. Japan looks lovely.

JD said...

T-Shirts from Harajuku, please. Will be a good reference to us, guys. Yeah, it's definitely one of the thing that needs to be done at least once in a lifetime, hmm, hopefully AirAsia flies to Japan soon.

Joshualaw said...

I don't have chance to go Singapore, not to say Anyways, nice trip! Sure you spent a LOT of MONEY there! ;)
btw, i would love to see the nice t-shirts that you bought from Japan! =)

Michelle Chin said...

My mom got offered a piece of chocolate by a commuter in the bullet train when she was holiday-ing in Japan.


She was telling me all sorts of things about Japan today.. .= =

KY said...

no wnoder arthur guinness also miss japan

Jess said...

Yes, Japan is a very nice place to go. I went there mid of this year when JAL was having a promotion and you can't get enough. Will go back there again.

Innocent^^Guy said...

I'm interested in the tshirts you got urself! But i think we are more interested in the tshirts u got for us :P

Wen Jing ^^ said...

Want to go japan but can't afford the daily expenses. Crazy expensive isn't it? haha. Hope to go there soon! :D

wildcard said...

shirts pls!

How Jun said...

After inspired by you, I went for a short holiday. I can't afford Japan so Hatyai was my choice.

How Jun said...

P/S: I bought some shirt from Haiyai too, let's compare prices and design shall we? lol

Tony Wan said...

lol...... Din bring back any Japan AV? xD

jasmine said...

hi timothy, just wondering which hot spring resort did you stay in hakone? looks really nice.

Vy said...

Yes, show us your shirts please.

I agree that we have to go to Japan (once in your lifetime) but it'll take forever for me to save for a trip there. SO expensive...


Matjoe said...

Been to japan once on a business trip. didn't have a chance the explore japan since the day is packed with meeting and seminar. one thing for sure, japan is expensive.