All I ever wanted was to travel to far off exotic places
Heather and I went to Ueno Park. This is a huge park in the middle of the city surrounded by museums. It's a lot like Central Park in New York.
We saw a puppet story teller. Too bad we couldn't understand the story.
We went to the Science Museum. When we were paying fr our tickets, I went first. I was really confused when the clerk handed money back to me. I can read numbers after all. Seeing my confused look the clerk said, "Ladies Day." (Imagine it with a Japanese accent). Heather and I were pretty stoked.
The museum was doing a special exhibit on sea life. They had giant skeletons of huge whales. The disappointing part was that all of the displays were in Japanese. Fortunately Heather and I are well-educated and brilliant, so we could figure out what each display was talking about.
There was also this giant statue of a whale outside. Isn't Heather's hat cute?
That evening we went to a baseball game. We met up with a bunch of people from Tim and Heather's English-speaking ward. Our team was the Swallows, and it was pretty funny to hear everyone imitate the Japanese pronunciation of "swallows."
Heather and I took the train, so we went to the grocery store in the train station and bought sushi and edamame to take to the game. Tim rode his scooter, because he had to leave for work meetings.
Aren't they so cute and coordinated?
This is the best part of the game. Every time the Swallows got a homerun, everyone in the stadium would stand up, open up their little umbrellas and sing. It was so awesome!
Thursday morning we got up and went to the temple. It is a small building tucked on a busy street. They have an English session on Thursdays, so it was nice to have people speak English.
Inside there is beautiful Japanese art, mountains and cherry blossoms.
This is the Shibuya crossing, right outside of the train station.
This is the statue of the faithful dog who waited for his master every day.
Then in the afternoon we went to Roppongi Hills and went up the Mori Tower. Roppongi Hills is a shopping center. They have a very tall tower so there is a 360 degree observatory at the top. This is the tower.
You can see the Tokyo Tower.
Out to the Rainbow Bridge.
After we walked all the way around, we went upstairs to a really cool art museum. The museum featured 3 Japanese artists and how they interpret nature.
We walked into the first room and I stood there blinking because it was so bright and white. And then the snow storm started.
It was so cool!
There are fans inside and they turn on and blow the feathers all over. I actually really wanted to be able to climb inside and move the piles of feathers around so they weren't all piled up in the same place.
In this display, you crawl underneath a paper mache "ground" and stick your head up through the holes so you can see the forest.
When we finished with the museum we walked outside of Roppongi Hills, there are a lot of unusual statues outside of it.
After we finished sightseeing, we went home and met up with Tim to go eat sushi. Tim's friend Jonathan came and joined us. They had a really good time entertaining the sushi chefs.
My tuna nigri. Yum-o.
After our delicious sushi, we went to a restaurant called Jonathan's and got blueberries and ice cream. I just got blueberries. Tim and Jonathan told us hilarious stories about their missions and we all laughed and laughed.
Day 5 -- Friday
In the morning, Heather and I went to the grocery store. We got up and out early, so we were there before the store opened. We sat outside and waited for a while. We were picking up some food for our Saturday trip and also for Sunday dinner. Heather found a recipe for Tuna with Mango Salsa. It was my job to help pick out the right fruit. We were successful with the mangoes and all the other vegetables we needed. But then we got over to the fish counter. We walked up and down looking for tuna. Finally Heather picked up a packet of fish and took it over to ask someone.
She said, "Tuna?" He said, "Yes."
Turns out it was salmon.
Then we spent the morning watching So You Think You Can Dance. I haven't watched it at all this summer, so I had to get caught up a little bit.
Then Heather and I went out to Ueno park again. We decided to go to the Tokyo National Museum.
First though, we walked through a shopping street right next to Ueno Park.
The best part of this street was the amazing amount of fish. Just hanging out there.
Also I got some boxes of candy. One for each of the friends who drove me to or picked me up from the airport and one for my friends at work. Everyone at work totally loved the candy. They said they were like soft jolly ranchers.
These are the manhole covers in Ueno Park.
We saw some more performers. This one was blowing balloon animals.
This is the Tokyo National Museum. It was all about art and all its different forms in Japan and how it has changed through the years. Heather and I were expected a little more about history. But there were some very interesting things there.
There were tons of Buddhas too. Big Buddhas, little Buddhas.
To finish out the day, we went to dinner at a shabu shabu place. They bring you a big pot of broth and put it on an induction heat top that is in the middle of your table. Then they bring you a big bowl of vegetables. The waitress picks out the firmer veggies and drops them in the pot. Then you pick out things like lettuce and swish them through the pot, add them to your bowl, and eat the whole thing. It was a very interesting experience. But once we got down to the end, the broth had reduced a lot and was delicious. That was the best part.