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(o)Edo (Alex)

by on August 3, 2016

Today, we saw more of Tokyo. We started by taking the Oedo subway line and meeting up with Gary and Matthew. 

We stopped by an Apple store, which looked very similar to all of the other Apple stores. There was an Apple Camp going on where they were drawing on iPads. 

Our next stop was one of the most famous Shinto shrines in the world. It was more plain and simple than others, but was still very cool.  It holds the  spirit of the Meiji emperor who opened Japan up to the rest of the world in the 1800s… He was very visionary… He wrote a Mission Statement for the new Japan that said “be good citizens and be nice to each other”.  The shrine was in a foresty area, which is very different from the bustling city very close by. There are some good luck objects that you could buy and carry around with you. We did do the clap 2 times, bow twice, and clap once more ritual. We took a nice walk back through the forest area and down the streets.

There was a long line of girls near a store. It turns out that the girls were waiting to take their photo with a boyband member. For those of you who don’t know, Japan essentially mass manufactures boy and girl bands using cookie-cutter templates. One of the first was AKB48

In that neighborhood was a crazy shopping street where everyone who wants to buy wild colored clothes from wild colored stores goes.

Our next stop was the Shake Shack. If you have never been to one, go. They have some of the best burgers in the world. You can find your nearest Shake Shack at It was, as usual, amazing. 

After Shake Shack, went to a small Samurai museum. They had some original armor, some reproductions including one of Tokugawa Ieyasu, whom we learned a lot about in school. For a complete California Public School approved rundown on him, go to or search up Tokugawa Ieyasu on I have no idea how many KQED documentaries I watched on him during the last 2 months of school. We saw an actor perform some samurai moves, and we got to wear some reproduction armor.  

After all of this, we went to a place with a Japanese version of snow cones. I got a strawberry one that was about 3 feet tall (not really but it was still tall) with virtually zero calories, besides the strawberries. It was amazing. 

We ended the day with dinner with Gary’s  family including Akiko (Mom) and Ellie (daughter).  I don’t think I have had a bad Japanese meal in Japan… unlike one other country in particular (not to name any names, but it starts with “Chi” and ends with “na”).  Gary’s family gve us some chopsticks with our names in Kanji on them which were really pretty.  Now I have to learn how to use chopsticks. 

Domo arigato gozaimasu to Gary, Matthew, Akiko and Ellie for being so nice in showing us around. We hope you had fun too!

This is what we did today.

PS a fancy store was selling this cantaloupe for   $162.00 US.  Are you kidding me?????  It had better cure cancer for that price.  A peach was a comparative steal at $80.00.


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One Comment
  1. Sofie Vandeputte permalink

    No messing with Alex in that outfit. Gorgeous picture.
    And Anna looks absolutely fabulous in that kimono.
    How about something like that next time you sell snow cones for the GS?
    Great pictures.

    Safe and smooth return travels. We look forward to having you back in hear more stories.
    Love your blogs.


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