This is not the first time I’ve been to Japan. My first time was for an I-Witness documentary shoot in Sakai and Kyoto in 2010, but it is my first Solo Travel here in Tokyo. So on my first day, I went to Ikebukuro. I successfully took the train from my hostel (Kuramae) to here (pat on the back). And what I saw was what I envision Tokyo to be.
Screaming logos and colourful fonts on billboards and signs.
Men in their business suits (salary men) walking in a huff to their next destination.
Being here and just watching them, made me smile. I feel like I’m in a Japanese movie.
I noticed a lot of Japanese wearing surgical masks, I’m not sure if there’s a virus going around, or perhaps they are allergic to pollen. And since the cherry blossoms are in full bloom now, a lot of its pollen must be floating in the air. Well, that’s just my guess. Will ask my japanese friends about this when I see them for hanami.
I found a Kinokuniya bookstore and got myself a magazine with free bunny bags, super kawaii 😀 I actually bought it for the bags 😉
We don’t have this kind of freebies in our magazines. The best they can do is insert a free sample of a product in between the pages. Hehe. Here, the freebies are just awesome 😉
On my map (free from the hostel), I saw a cafe that serves good organic food. It was in the area so i thought of looking for it. Turns out it is a MUJI cafe. There was a queue when I arrived but since I’m only by myself, they easily found me a spot in a big table shared with other customers. Here, i was surprised to find out that I can leave my stuff on the table, even my camera! and just fall in line to order my food. Halukatdat!
There were no english translation but everything looks so good. I asked them what it was and I ended up ordering a set meal of tofu dish with veggies, glazed chicken, and another cup of veggies with beets i believe. It was all delicious.
I continued to explore the busy streets of Ikebukuro and stumbled upon this small park with beautiful cherry blossoms. It really looks so lovely especially in daytime. I can just gaze at it forever. Le Sigh.
I like that there are pockets of serenity in the frenetic streets of Tokyo.
I wish I can take a tree home and have my own cherry blossoms right outside my atelier 😉 Or better yet, have an atelier here in Tokyo! I can just imagine myself, sipping tea and looking out my window – Oh, what do i see, poetry as lovely as this cherry blossom tree. Hahaha, excuse me for romanticizing, being surrounded by sakura is making me feel all this.
I try to believe that I find silence in the chaos, and Tokyo is like that for me now.
Up Next: HARAJUKU