I have met some wonderful artists that became my friends during my Artist Residency in Cite des Arts in Paris. One of them is Kanna, a Japanese painter that I featured several times here on the blog.
Kanna stayed in Cite des Arts for 3 years (I believe), so every time I would come to Paris, I know i will always see her. But alas her artist residency ended, it was time to go back to Japan. When she left, I promised that I will come see her there. After 4 years, I finally did.
I was so happy to see a familiar face at the Haneda airport. Kanna helped me fix everything even before coming here. From choosing Haneda over Narita (haneda is closer to the city), to my cellphone rental (my old phone and sim card doesn’t work here) to looking for the best hostel, to picking me up at the airport and lending me her subway card (that i just need to recharge so I don’t need to keep on buying tickets), to lending me a windbreaker (because my jacket wasn’t enough) to, ok, almost everything! 🙂
After locating my really cool hostel and dropping off my luggage, we walked around Ueno and had dinner. Well, she first asked me if I prefer to walk around or to eat, it was still a bit early but I was really hungry so of course, tummy first!
We went up the building and chose this resto where locals dine. The place looks nice and cozy. Every bit of space used wisely, which is very important especially in Tokyo, as space here is very expensive.
What i am excited about this trip among other things is eating japanese food. I have a mental list of everything I need to consume on this trip, but that deserves another blog entry.
I enjoyed watching the men prepare our dishes. We were seated right in front of them so it’s like being on the front row of a cooking show 🙂 The sushi was the freshest thing ever. Oishi!!!
Tummy now full, we walked around Ueno park and saw this food market leading to the temple. I would have wanted to try out some but I got no space left in my tummy.
Homeygawd, omaygad, oh my god – My first Sakura 😀 It’s sooooooo beautiful! The flowers looked like it was glowing in the dark. Kanna said I came at the perfect time because the cherry blossoms has fully bloomed.
I saw people in their business suits seated on the ground, laughing and drinking underneath the cherry blossom trees. This is in fact the main reason why I came here during this time, to experience hanami during sakura.
It’s been a lovely welcome on my first evening in Tokyo. Good thing Kanna is here to help me figure out the subway. I heard it’s more complicated than the Paris metro. Will see how i fare tomorrow, when Kanna won’t be around to help me for directions. For now, aruruwelcome to TOKYO!!!