Sunday, November 30, 2008


Thursday morning came early as we needed to be in the lobby at 8 for our tour pick up. Alison and I found this cute “local starbucks” called Tully’s Coffee Shop. We had a delicious bagel sandwich and coffee and went back to our hotel to wait for our ride. Our pick up service was not the tour but just a bus that would take us to the bus terminal where our tour actually began. There were 11 adults and 2 kids on our full day tour. Our group represented many places; Canada, Texas, Birmingham, Australia, and us…we didn’t know what to tell people when they asked where we were from so we got into our whole story quite a few times throughout the day. The guide was a local Japanese man to had 3 sons and 1 daughter, his princess. He also had a 96 year old mother who is very active, walks everyday, and is very strong (he repeated himself a lot!!! hehe). We made our first stop at the Tokyo Tower, then to a Japanese tea and Bonsai garden, a fabulous barbecue lunch, a stop by the emperors palace, a (lame) river cruise that went under too many bridges (I slept through this part), and finally a stroll down a popular shopping area that leads up to a very famous temple (so famous I can't remember the name ;) ).

View from the top of the Tokyo Tower
A view down from the top of the Tokyo Tower... We received quite the stares as we took this one :)
Garden scene at the traditional tea house
More scenery...
Our tour guide and the tea master
My favorite...:)
in the city...
In front of the Emperor's palace...I was a little cold ;)
On the river cruise...aka the one I slept through. This must have been taken prior to my nap time :)
If you saw "I Survived A Japanese Game Show" then you've definitely seen these guys...
The Temple
These people are drinking from the fountain then spitting the water back in...yup it is as gross as it sounds!
Thursday was a COLD day with lots of rain. By the end of the day my shoes were wet as were my jeans up to the middle of my calf…I couldn't feel the toes on my left foot! Our nice tour guide dropped us off after the tour right near our hotel, even though he didn’t have to! We went to our room and changed shoes and socks then headed out to the large shopping district in Ginza. We were bound for H&M. The store had just opened in September, just in time for us! There was a line to get in and guys standing by the door! After searching through 3 floors all three of us left with a few purchases… one of my purchases was a pair of gloves for the remainder of our Tokyo stay! We continued to wander the streets feeling intensely underdressed. I have NEVER in my life seen so many men in dark suits and women in boots! After walking for too long we finally agreed to eat dinner at Quiznos, I know I know you’re asking yourself why we are eating that in Tokyo. Well, knowing we are not coming home after this trip we wanted to eat as much “home” food as possible…that and we couldn’t read any of the posted menus for other restaurants. All three of us had achy legs by the time we made it back to the hotel and once again we crashed in preparation for Friday which included a hotel transfer to the Ritz Carlton (WOOHOO!) and Disneyland (WOOHOO again!)

Ginza Street shopping...

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