Wednesday, February 28, 2007

A bus for sightseeing a city

This is a double-decker bus for sightseeing in Tokyo. Without roof, we can enjoy the scenery of the city fully when we get on the second floor. Most people living in Tokyo have not gotten on it because it is for sightseeing.

Why not get on it and do sightseeing your own city once in a while?

Good job, chris & deb and Raquel!!

Tokyo, art
This is "Le Penseur" by Auguste Rodin. This sculpture is also famous in Japan

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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Ummm, do you know who I am???


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Monday, February 26, 2007

Classic car, Subaru 360

Subaru 360, Tokyo
Subaru 360, Tokyo
This is the first Japanese small car, Subaru 360 and it is displayed at Edo-Tokyo museum.

This was launched out at 1958, about 40 years ago, for a bread-and-butter car, volkswagen. It is a little similar to Volkswagen Beetle.

The design looks like insects and I love it.

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Saturday, February 24, 2007

Tokyo Tower

Tokyo Tower
This tower, Tokyo Tower, was constructed about 50 years ago to supply electric waves to watch TV and to listen to the radio. In the middle of the tower is a place for enjoying the vista of Tokyo.

The tower is one of the popular and typical spots for travelers but people living in Tokyo seldom visit there. Because it is a sightseeing spot. In general, sightseeing spots seem to be unpopular with people living there... How about your city??

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Friday, February 23, 2007

A symbol of the city: Ginza, Tokyo

Ginza, building, Tokyo
This buliding have been a symbol of Ginza and Tokyo for a long time. This is a department store but surprisingly is closed on Sunday. Because this store, WAKO, is not for ordinary people, but for luxury mesdames. By the way, Wako's chocolate and sweets are delicious:-)

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Spring has come??

cherry, Tokyo
Walking around Ueno Park, one of biggest parks in Tokyo and famous for its cherry trees, this weekend, I happened to find a few cherry blossoms come out. It has been rather warm this winter in Tokyo. Cherry usually bursts into blossom a little later than this year. It would be too much earlier if spring really has come.

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

MUJI store again

MUJI store, Tokyo
MUJI store, Tokyo
MUJI store, Tokyo
This is a MUJI store. These minimalistic items feel light and simple.

Related article

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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Prada in Tokyo

Prada, Tokyo
Prada, Tokyo
Prada, Tokyo
This crystal cut building is Prada in Tokyo, designed by Herzog and De Meuron, famous architects worldwide.

Their works are famous for their unique facade, successfully using ordinary material just like stone, glass, copper...

Prada adds the big gem, including other gems inside, to the city of Tokyo.

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Niboshi, Tokyo
This smaller device than the one in a previous post, shot at Nihonbashi, is for slicing niboshi, small fish for flavoring Japanese cusine. This is the first time I have ever seen it. The price is rather expensive.

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Monday, February 19, 2007

Tokyo International Forum 2

Tokyo International Forum, Tokyo
This is another photo of Tokyo International Forum.

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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Anago don, a kind of Japanese cusine

Anago, Japanese cusine, Tokyo
Anago, Japanese cusine, Tokyo
Anago, Japanese cusine, Tokyo
Anago, Japanese cusine, Tokyo
Anago, Japanese cusine, Tokyo
This cusine is grilled anago, just like unagi, eel, with rice. The anago is slightly more non-fatty than unagi, eel.

The anago is grilled, steamed and then flavored with a special sauce, made of say sauce, sugar, mirin and the other. We eat it with boiled rice. The fish contains many kinds of vitamin and good for health.

We can also eat it with soup flavored with dashi taste and the mixture between rice and soup is called Ochazuke. It is spiced up with a little wasabi, sesami, chopped raw Welsh onion, called negi in Japan, and grated Yuzu, something of citrus.

By the way, Japanese sake, a Japanese alcoholic drink made of rice, goes with this cuisine.

Have a nice week!!

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Saturday, February 17, 2007

A traditional device at home

Katuo bushi, Tokyo

This wooden device is for shaving thin strips of dried bonito, Katsuo bushi, and used to be every home in Japan. Sliced dried bonito is used to make miso soup, soba noodle of Tokyo style and other Japanese cusine. The sliced one is about 0.1 to 0.7 mm thick and the the taste differs up to thickness.

Related articles:

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Friday, February 16, 2007

Let it snow!

snow, Tokyo
We have a little snow every year, but no snow yet this year. No snow in winter in Tokyo will be for the first time. This winter is rather warm in Tokyo.

This is a small snow festival in Chuo ward in Tokyo and this snow is brought from Yamagata, a snow area in Japan, all the way.

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow......

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

a vinegar standing bar in a station

Vinegar, Tokyo
Vinegar, Tokyo
This is a standing bar in a station, selling a variety of soft drinks with vinegar. They are, for example, apple-cider vinegar flavored with tomato, the apple vinegar flavored with carrot, black vinegar with soy milk...

Now vinegar is also known as an item for maintaining one's health and soft drinks with vinegar are sold at 24/7 convenience stores.

By the way, vinegar, su in Japanese, is one of the five fundamental elements in Japanese cusine. They are called sa-shi-su-se-so.

Sa means satoh, sugar,
Shi means shio, salt,
Su means su, vinegar,
Se means seuyu(syoyu), say sauce,
And so means miso, miso.

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Off day

I have to say that this blog is needed to be off today to make another blog, "Proverbs with illustraions".

Sorry for that and have a nice day!!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Comme des garcon, Tokyo

This is the facade of a fashion shop of "comme des garcon" by Rei Kawakubo, a Japanese fashion designer.

The curving wall is impressive and reminds me of Richard Serra, though their feelings are different each other.

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Saturday, February 10, 2007

National Art Center, Roppongi, Tokyo

National Art Center, Tokyo
National Art Center, Tokyo
This is a brand new National Art Center in Roppongi, Tokyo, designed by Kisho Kurokawa. Modest curves and cones features the exterior and interior.

The museum has no permanent exhibition but only temporary exhibition. A comfortable cafe and restaurant are attached to the museum.

Unfortunately, the fee is rather high, 1300 yen for adult and 1000 yen for college student. The fee means even the National museum is only for rich people. If the lower fee doesn't allow the museum to carry on it and the government cannot afford to help the museum financially, I think the prices of the attached restaurant should be higher, as a kind of donation. If so, the museum can make the fee lower.

Plus, the opening time is as usual as the other museum, 10:00 to 18:00 and 10;00 to 20:00 only on Friday, though this is located in the middle of business area. I think that the opening time keeps business persons from going to museum after working....

OK, I have to stop complaint and have a nice weekend!!

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Friday, February 09, 2007

Fascinating Muses

Sign boards: Harajuku, Tokyo
Sign boards: Harajuku, Tokyo
Sign boards: Harajuku, Tokyo
Sign boards: Harajuku, Tokyo
Many fashionable sign boards are in Harajuku, Tokyo, and these adds some nice touches to this town. We can meet Muses without going to modern museums.

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Thursday, February 08, 2007


love, Tokyo
Japanese women always use a word, love, as a question: "Do you love me?"
Japanese men always usually use the word as a reply: "Sure, I love you."

And not vice versa....


Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Roller coaster in the middle of city

Roppongi, Tokyo
On the roof of a building is, surprisingly, installed a half-tube small roller coaster. The building is in Roppongi, in the middle of Tokyo and full of bars, discos, restaurants of various countries. This roller coaster was almost open to the public but was not because the neighbors were against it. Now this turned to be just an ornament of the building....

By the way, I don't like this kind of rides though I fully understand it is safe...


Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Chocolat in Japan

Chocolat, Tokyo
February in Japan is the season of chocolat since women in Japan give some chocolat to their husband or boy friend on 14 Feb, Saint Valentine's Day.(Don't ask me why chocolat. I guess it is just for commercial reason.) In turn, men give back to their wife or girl friend some presents on 14 March, called White Day in Japan.(I don't know what is "white" at all and the day is, I guess, just made for department stores to make money.)

Now chocolat is getting popular because some TV or magazine reports that cacao is healthy. So chocolat with less sugar and much cacao is in vogue.

Expensive chocolat are also selling well now, especially the Belgian and French ones. One piece of chocolat on a break makes us feel relaxed.

By the way, it is said that confectioners making chocolat have colder hands than usual and it is about 26 to 27 degrees C. It is lower than the degree that chocolat melts, about 29 degrees C. As they make chocolat over and over again, do their hands turn to be cold naturally? I think that their hands are cold because they give all their affection and passion to chocolat when they are making it. So chocolat contains a lot of love and good for Valentine Day in Japan, I guess.

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Monday, February 05, 2007

Omote Sando Hills

Omote Sando Hills, Tokyo
Omote Sando Hills, Tokyo
This building is Omote Sando Hills, one of newest and hottest spots in Tokyo and designed by Tadao Ando, a famous architect worldwide.

The building is along a big boulevard, full of trees on both sides. The street is a gentle slope to one of biggest shrine in Japan, Meiji shrine. The street is lined with many fashion shops and cafes, just like something of a mixture of Champs Elysees in Paris and Via Montenapoleone in Milano. (Though this street is nowhere near as elegant as these streets...)

On every weekend many people are enjoying walking in the streets and this is one of the most popular places for getting a date with one's boy or girl friend.

An old and low-rise building used to be here. This new building is also as low as the old one as to be in harmony with the surrounding building and trees. The height of this building is about the same as that of the trees along the street so the building goes well with the scenery.

This building has long and thin plan. In the center of it is a long void and it is surrounded with a spiral and continuous slope. Along the slope are many small shops, selling a variety of goods. The flow planing is, roughly speaking, like the one of Guggenheim Museum in NYC. The spiral slope of this building is exactly the same as the one of the street outside in angle. The well-balanced elements of the width, height and lightness of the corridor make us feel comfortable.

Inside the building is another little street with the same angle and the similarity successfully connects the inside with the outside.

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Sunday, February 04, 2007

Mr. Exposed Concrete, Tadao Ando

Tadao Ando, Tokyo

This narrow and round corridor is a part of a building designed by Tadao Ando, a noted architect worldwide. Early works of Tadao Ando feature the simple and elegant texture of exposed concrete. He is also a maestro, skillfully handling the light and shadow. Plus, he has a perfectly sense of scales in his works: the sizes of corridors, rooms, entrances.... They are not too small nor big.

He successfully designs elegant architecture, skillfully controlling the texture, light, shadow and scale.

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Saturday, February 03, 2007

Bonus: In honor of Alvar Aalto, Finnish archtect

Alva Aalto, Tokyo
Joensuu Daily Photo show us Aalto's vase in the article on 15 Nov., not to mention interesting information and the Finnish beauty. Today I happen to find the same vase in Tokyo and post the picture in honor of Aalto and Joensuu Daily Photo.


Kon-bini: 24-hour convenience store

convenience store, Seven Eleven, Tokyo sightseeing
convenience store, Lawson, Tokyo sightseeing
convenience store, Family Mar, Tokyo sightseeing
convenience store, am pm, Tokyo sightseeing
convenience store, sunkus, Tokyo sightseeing
These are five popular 24/7 stores, called convenience store in Japan and now such stores is everywhere in Tokyo. One of the biggest chain stores, Seven Eleven come from US and the other, Lawson, Family Mart, am pm and Sunkus are Japanese. We can buy a variety of stuffs, from daily foods and beer to stationery and magazine. Plus, we can book some concert and hotel and can send stuffs via delivery service like Fedex and DHL. Most of stores let us use small washing room.

By the way, I prefer Seven Eleven and am pm.

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Friday, February 02, 2007

Entrance to the Metro

Metro, Tokyo
Inspired by Paris Daily Photo, I am posting the modern entrance to the Metro.

Glass is used as beams, though glass is not usually used as frame, and the glass-beams support the glass roof.

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Thursday, February 01, 2007

The theme day, "What really annoys you in your city"


We can easily find this full-of-patches side walk, covered with asphalt, in Tokyo. Beneath the street are buried electric cable, water pipe, gas pipe and telephone wire.

Every time new houses or buildings are built along the street, the surface is torn up for supplying the electric, water, gas and telephone to the new structure. After the work, only a part of the surface is turned back.

So every time new buildings come out in the city, the street go into the "artistic" patchwork.

I wish more surfaces were paved like other cities, though it will be more expensive....

1 (Porto (Portugal) ) -2 (Stayton, OR (USA) ) -3 (Albuquerque, NM (USA) ) -4 (Tenerife (Spain) ) -5 (Greenville, SC (USA) ) -6 (Dubai (U.A.E.) ) -7 (Evry (France) ) -8 (Jakarta (Indonesia) ) -9 (London (UK) ) -10 (Sequim, WA (USA) ) -11 (Buenos Aires, (Argentina) ) -12 (Seattle, WA (USA) ) -13 (Minneapolis, MN (USA) ) -14 (Stavanger (Norway) ) -15 (Joplin , MO (USA) ) -16 (Nelson, New Zealand ) -17 (Milano, Italy ) -18 (Singapore (KeropokMan) ) -19 (La Antigua Guatemala (Guatemala) ) -20 (Nottingham UK ) -21 (Singapore by Zannnie (Singapore) ) -22 (Budapest (Hungary) ) -23 (Not Strictly Seattle, ) -24 (Bandung (Indonesia) ) -25 (Vantaa (Finland) ) -26 (Hyde (UK) ) -27 (Madrid by Dsole (Spain) ) -28 (Oulu (Finland) ) -29 (Saarbr?cken (Germany) ) -30 (St. Paul [Carol] ) -31 (Sydney (Australia) ) -32 (Tokyo (Japan) ) -33 (Kyoto (Japan) ) -34 (Trujillo (Peru) ) -35 (Shanghai (China) ) -36 (Rotterdam (NL) ) -37 (Chicago, IL (USA) ) -38 (Nice, (France) ) -39 (Naples, Florida (USA) ) -40 (Hong Kong ) -41 (Santa Clara, CA (USA) ) -42 (Quito, Ecuador (South America) ) -43 (Cottage Grove, MN (USA) ) -44 (Paris, (France) ) -45 (Manila (Philippines) ) -46 (Brussels (Belgium) ) -47 (Auckland (New Zealand) ) -48 (Newcastle upon Tyne(England) ) -49 (Houston, TX (USA) ) -50 (Sydney by Nathalie (Australia) ) -51 (Mumbai (India) ) -52 (Anderson, SC (USA)) -