Not such an early start today since I'm just walking around Tokyo to tour some more Shinkai movie spots; mix of Weathering with You/Tenki no Ko and Your Name.
People sure finish their breakfast quickly, a lot of business people in suits. View feels pointless when you're doing that. You might as well just be surrounded by paintings imo.
Then again, I'm a slow eater.
Planning to to go to the Mori Tower observation decks but it doesn't open until the afternoon so, first off to Ginza the luxury high class shopping area.
Was quite easy finding the Tenki no Ko temples.
For the first Asahi Shrine I saw the lower shrine first but the lift to the rooftop shrine was round the corner.
Few Shinkai fans were already shooting there I think so I waited a while for them to finish.
Simpsons must be high class too here. Used to watch it quite often in the evening.
Not far away was Hachikan Shrine.
Some nice fencing on this building.
Lots of traditional looking buildings in the area.
Spotted this interesting painting which depicts the delivery of Sake I think.
Not the seediest building I've seen while making my way to Shiba Park next.
Another nice little place. Too bad I'm not a fan of Unagi, eel.
Pretty creative using the Kana character for u, う as an eel.
Short train to the park from Shimbashi to Hamamatsucho Station to save some walking.
I liked how this building opposite had this tiny square with an animated cat to advertise, visible only in the station. Someone knows to to make use of space for advertisement xD
Fancy toilet but oof, it smelled as bad as some of the public toilets in Hong Kong!
Never went to the Tokyo Tower area and never done any research on the area so I was surprised to come by a big shrine, Shiba Daijingu on my way to the park.
Steps were pretty steep.
Was quite a sight seeing the Zojo Temple gates together with Tokyo Tower in the distance.
Very busy area with plaques giving a bit of history.
I actually got the Shiba Park Weathering with You spot wrong but somehow managed to find the spot in the end!
There were people on the seats so I couldn't shoot a pic of them but the view's more exciting really. Quite a number people were having fun posing in the big open area.
Navigating around the park can be tricky because it's so big.
Lots of photo spots to shoot both tower and shrine together.
Kind of like Asakusa, Senso where you see the gates and Skytree together. Almost as majestic as Toudai in Nara but a lot more modern structures around here.
Off to the next Weathering spot, Mori Tower now. Metro station had some fancy art.
Don't know how I came across a video on YouTube explaining how Wendy's Kitchen is called, "Fakkin" in Japan because its original name was "First Kitchen, [Fasuto Kicchin]" which shortens to "FaKin"...
Don't know what this was but some nice wall art.
Decided to grab some lunch from Seattle chain Cinnabon serving Italian food. Wanted ramen but nothing nearby and it was quiet so decided to drop in here instead. Had a bit of trouble understanding what the girls were saying about how to collect the order to the point where they were looking annoyed but, managed it somehow; collect your drink first from the counter then wait for your food at a table with your number stand.
I think I recognised someone I usually see on Japanese TV but wasn't sure. Big man with dyed blonde shoulder length hair and a red suit, Kazlaser.
Restaurant was near Asahi TV Studio so it could possibly have been the guy.
The bolognese wasn't too bad except the sausage was salty and the tough skin made it not so great. Also had a vanilla latte and the cup was huge... Usually they're just some small paper cup but then again I never frequent restaurants or cafes due to my social anxiety. Too many people around those places.
Just separating all the waste once you're done as you do in Japan. Don't have to do this as much in HK or UK but not a bad habit to get into.
Roppongi has some interesting statues.
The observatory featured in Your Name and Weathering was hard to find because it had many levels to the place and buildings. Ended up in the Mori Tower office building and it definitely didn't feel like the right place... When I asked the security guard she said Skydeck was closed until further notice unfortunately so that was disappointing.
I tried checking the site but there was no reason published there.
Turns out the observation deck was just opposite the office tower.
There were Tokyo Revengers and Fist of The North Star art exhibitions going on but wasn't interested and you had to buy separate tickets anyway.
Also, giant plushie.
Personally I think the 2000 Yen for the City View 50 floors up really isn't worth it. You can get a better view for free at Bunkyo Civic Centre even though it's only half the height at 25 floors.
Most of the staff were quite snobby too, only minimal talk. It's like they read off a script then after that, they'll just ignore you even if you try to talk to them directly. I tried asking why the deck was closed but the guy just ignored me and pointed me to the ticket desk. Ticket seller wasn't very friendly either. Here's your ticket, that way and that's it instead of your usual thanks, enjoy your time with a bow.
Well, as far as the observation deck is concerned you get a little more room whereas the Bunkyo had a big thick metal wall blocking you from getting closer to the glass window.
Unless you want to see Tokyo Tower closer, better saving your money.
Maybe the Skydeck featured in Weathering will be worth it though.
Next spot was the National Art Centre which was easier to find.
There were signs on the lamp posts pointing you in the right direction in the streets.
It's a nice building with plenty of seating. Plenty of people chilling out or even napping inside, lol.
Exhibitions require paid tickets but otherwise you can go to the cafe areas or just walk around. Including one of the entrances where Miki and Taki hang out.
There's actually two circular cafes in the building, Salon de The Rond on the second floor and Brasserie Paul Bocuse Le Musee on the third but not hard working out the one featured in Your Name.
Legs were hurting at this point but rush hour was close so I decided to get to Akiba quick while waiting for it to be over.
Visited Amiami but was disappointed the few figures they had on sale in both their stores (they have two in Akiba). Better just browsing the second hand places like Lashinban to see them in the flesh then order online.
Also rip-off Astop selling at 3 - 4 times the price. Found my Saber Lily scale figure selling at the same price though.
Was browsing Volks Hobby Paradise 2 next.
Wasn't expecting to come across this Good Smile 1/7 Steins;gate Kurisu Reading Steiner figure released back in October that's sold out everywhere online.
It was around 2000 Yen or so higher than RRP. I was hesitant at first but since scale figures are limited in quantity this could have been my only opportunity and importing would have been even more expensive so as a Steins;gate fan, I went for it in the end.
Unfortunately the store doesn't do duty free but never mind. It's hard to find.
Kinokuniya always had a Ghibli merch section but don't remember them stocking the Sankei papercraft models.
I had bought a new power bank that supported Quick Charge 3.0 before I set off on my trip so it could keep up with the GPS but it stopped working even before I set off... Wouldn't charge or discharge so I ended up looking for a new one. Yodabashi and Bicamera's were too expensive.
Interestingly enough Donki Quijote had some for sale at better prices. They were still pricier than buying one back in the UK but needed one now really. Unfortunately only items over 5000 Yen are duty free. There were QC4 support ones too but more expensive obviously. Don't think I'll need that since QC3 good enough for now.
Never been to Japan's Donki but it's definitely got a lot more goods than the ones in HK.
I remember seeing someone do a video of what's inside these One Piece lucky bags... Think they got something good out of it, a figure.
Plenty of girls standing around trying to get your attention in Akiba but I just look away and ignore them ^^;
However, one woman approached me outside Gallery 8 next to Himuka Shokudo [Eatery] so she was standing right in front and harder to ignore. Thought I'd just take the leaflet and go but she stopped me and ushered me into the art gallery... Sales assistant inside was quite chatty. Tried to say I spent a lot already (on my Steins;gate figure) but she was pushy to at least sell me a postcard.
Sales must be hard.
She kept recommending the Mount Fuji art but it didn't look that great so I got a 3D lenticular seasonal postcard with a dog in it instead.
Never take a leaflet unless you can say no afterwards... Some proper Japanese convo practice at least.
That said some of the Japanese style pieces are quite nice. Might go back if I have currency left. They're not cheap of course.
Anyway, moving on there was a Good Smile pop-up store being setup with a giant Miku figure from their Hello series at the window and vending machine selling them outside.
One Piece collaboration with Mos Burger. Tempted but I think I've had enough fried food in Japan...
Bunch of other things that caught my eye as I browsed around.
I happen to have this Persona Q2 tapestry as a pre-order bonus when I imported the game. Was selling for 4500 Yen at a store.
There was a Fujio 90th Anniversary pop-up shop at Akihabara Station. Most of the merch were Doraemon of course but imagine wearing this t-shirt to a date, lol. I wanted to buy something but the designs weren't that great.
Back at the hotel.
Just checkout the size of the 1/7 figure. Everything was really detailed including all the Future Gadgets and the Metal Upa sitting on the top. Swiss knife for comparison (handy for tools like scissors, knife opener while travelling!)
Guy packed this Spy x Family Dolfie themed dolls leaflet into the bag, haha...
And the said postcard I was pressured into buying, lol... Maybe you'll come across the place one day while in Akiba.
On the way back I got approached by a Phillipines student in Japanese. Tried to pretend I didn't understand so I could walk away but nope, had English prepared too. Doh! He was trying to sell chocolate to cover some of his living costs but the art was enough charity for one day really...
On another note, my real world Japanese is still not up to par, both speaking and listening. I say real world because unlike Anime or other shows lines don't have to be delivered perfectly so they can be harder to hear. I end up missing the shops asking if I need a bag "fukuro".
This time I didn't hear "atatamemasu ka?" which was asking if I wanted my ready meal warmed up or not so the store clerk repeated in English, "Shall I light it up?" Obviously I knew what he really meant so I just waved my hand to say no but yeah, sure set it on fire xD
What a day. Found what I was after and actually covered everything planned with time to spare.