Posted by: loveandsplendor | November 22, 2010

Tokyo Travels – Part 2

Hello again, everyone!!  It’s Monday afternoon here in Tokyo and you guessed it… I’m still in love with this place.  🙂  I can’t believe we are leaving in just a few days!!  I told Erik that somehow, this place feels like “home” to me, even if it is still so new and foreign.  I can easily picture myself living here, which is rare since I am a soCal girl through and through.  I wonder if life’s path will bring me back to Tokyo again soon…

In the meanwhile, we have continued to explore Tokyo at a feverish pace.  I am astonished at how much ground we’ve covered in the week + change we’ve been here.  Here are some silly “Tokyo-isms” I’ve witnessed in my jaunts around town:

  • It doesn’t matter how cold it is or how much it rains, Japanese girls are going to wear precarious heels, everywhere.
  • They are also impervious to the cold and can wear heels with bare legs and not so much as bat an eye… while I wear layer upon layer of winter clothing at night and shiver to the bone!
  • At restaurants, you almost always need to take your bill up to the counter and pay on your way out.
  • Everything is cute here… including construction signs (shaped like little animals) and public service posters (featuring cartoons).
  • Tokyo is not for the claustrophobic.  From Shibuya crossing at night, to Shinjuku station in the a.m., to a Van Gogh exhibit at the National Art Center… crowds are de rigeur and you get over your “personal space” issues quickly here.
  • Mt. Fuji is invisible for most of the year.  One Japanese man joked with us saying there are only 3 days a year that it is truly visible in all its splendor.  We were VERY lucky to catch a glimpse of her a few days ago while on the JR Train near Tokyo Bay.

I’m sure there are many more tidbits I’ll share with you later!  For now, here is another dose of photos from our journeys.  🙂

Five-story pagoda at Senso-ji in Asakusa

A candid of me in front of the aforementioned Zest Premium Burger in Tokyo Dome City.

 The striking facade of the National Art Center in Roppongi.  We spent a morning here, visiting the special Van Gogh exhibition.  Most of the pieces came from the Van Gogh Museum, and I was especially excited to see a piece by my mother’s favorite artist (not VG).

Oishii!!  Delicious tebasaki (chicken wings) at Yamachan in Akihabara.

Shibuya crossing at night — a surreal Tokyo experience.  We sat at this Starbucks overlooking the crossing for half an hour, just watching the swarming throngs.  Incredible.

Us right in the middle of Shibuya crossing

Some tranquil snaps of Shinjuku Gyoen, which was once an imperial retreat.  Looove all the autumn foliage!

We spent Sunday morning riding bikes around the Imperial Palace.. a nice 3.5 mile ride.  I would guesstimate it was the first time I rode a bike in over 12 years.  Lucky for me, the old saying is true.  This was truly one of the most unique + special things we have done so far.

It’s a “Where’s Waldo” moment!  Spot me (in an unflattering candid pose, of course) amidst the crowds at Nakamise-dori in Asakusa?  LOVE this shopping street with stalls selling everything from kokeshi to kimono, fresh sembei (rice crackers) to takoyaki (octopus ball) and age manju (deep fried red bean buns). 

The view of the Sumida Gawa (in the background — the “golden poo” on top of the Asahi building LOL and a in-construction tower that will be one of the tallest in the world).



  1. that last picture makes me laugh! i’m so glad you are having such a lovely time! i’m thinking about you guys this week 🙂

    • miss you ❤ ❤ off to taiwan tomorrow; email me if you have any last-minute recs of things to eat or do! xox

  2. So excited to be following along with your fabulous adventures in Tokyo! Some food recs- there is a tiny ramen place that I still dream about- Santouka ramen on Megi-dori Rd in Shibuya (between the “Life” grocery store and Starbucks,) if you need something to warm you up from the cold! For a romantic, (Lost in Translation!) date night- the New York Grill at the top of the Park Hyatt for a fancy-pants meal with a killer view. 🙂 Enjoy!! Can’t wait to hear everything when you get back!

    • hey love!! thank you for your sweet comments!! we leave tokyo tomorrow after 12 glorious days here, so i’m bummed we won’t be able to try santouka! is it related to the santouka out in l.a.?? i wonder… i didn’t know you were a ramen lover; i have the perfect place for our next get-together. xoxo let’s schedule before Christmas!! miss you much!!!!

  3. So happy to hear you’re having a good time…miss you!!! xoxo Can’t wait for our Brodard feast when you get back!

    • banh xeo!!!! ❤ love you doll~ miss you too!

  4. darling! i am so glad you are having so much fun. i can’t believe erik has bangs!!! wow! you two are quite stylish i’m sure. enjoy! love you!

    • i know — isn’t it crazy?? erik always takes vacations as an opportunity to change up his hairstyle. he’s still torn on it, though. lol 😉 miss you!!!!

  5. Wow Angel, what a fabulous trip!!! I am so envious of your travels. You certainly deserve it!!!

    • thanks, doll!! feeling very blessed to be here! 🙂

  6. wow angel! looks like a blast!! i love all the pictures and your fabulous captions… 🙂 you look adorable in the “where’s waldo” pic. hope you enjoy the rest of your trip and can’t wait to hear about all the lovely details from your first international wedding!!!
    ps: you’ll be back just in time for rm’s sample sale!! heheh… xxoxo

  7. aww, reminds me of my trip to japan! i was at similar places. definitely miss shopping from the stalls in asakusa! it’s funny, that was the same impression i had of the japanese girls when we were there; impervious to the cold, wore boots with short, short skirts, boots with bare legs, and heels everywhere!

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