A typical day in urban Japan

Maybe it’s because we usually didn’t stay longer than four days in the same place but there wasn’t a typical day or routine during the two months we stayed in Japan. When we were staying in the larger cities though, we enjoyed the usual things you do if you want to live an urban Japanese lifestyle.

Asagohan – Let’s start the day with a hearty breakfast!
I’m totally a breakfast person and while in Japan, I was able to pretty much eat everything I wanted because we walked over long distances and needed lots of energy to survive the day.
Rice with pickles, miso soup and a slice of fish is the traditional Japanese meal in the morning and I couldn’t complain about that because I like eating “normal” food you would also maybe eat for lunch or dinner in the morning better than sweet cornflakes or yoghurt and so on. You could also go to a Konbini (convenience store) that is open 24h a day and grab a tasty onigiri or other packed meals or get a pan (bread) in one of the many fancy boulangeries and cafés.

1. French toast with a salmon salad 2. Onigiri at a Konbini 3. Sticky, smelly natto (fermented soy beans) – I love it :3 4. Tasty mackerel

Go with the flow – Don’t plan everything!
Many tourists have a strict plan to which they stick and I’m sure that’s a reasonable thing to do if you have a limited amount of time but it’s easy to miss out the “real Japanese” experiences if you only travel by guide book. Taking a group bus and go to places where there are countless other annoying tourists is not exactly the ultimate thing to remember. At least for me it isn’t. You don’t need to search for the “Japanese” in Japan, it will automatically happen all around you. Of course it’s nice to visit the famous landmarks and in Kyoto for example it’s impossible to escape the tourists crowd but leave enough space for improvisation and coincidence and you will feel a little more adventurous.

1. Oishii Kirin milk tea with cute Disney characters 2. Drink milk! 3.How about a relaxing massage? From cats for cats. 4. Anime girl.. awwww

Japanese girls know KAWAII the best – take Purikura!
In every amusement arcade (and there’s lots of them) you will find several floors with many different kinds of video games and on the top floor there’s usually purikura photo booths with lots of dressed up school girls and only very few guys. In fact in some purikura places it’s even forbidden to take purikura with the same gender if they’re male! There always has to be at least one girl with them.
The machines have changed quite a lot since the last time I was in Japan. If you look closely you will see that there’s pics where my legs look unnaturally thin and long, this is definitely new to me and super scary!! The same applies to the huge manga eyes and flawless skin. It’s possible to decide how strong the effects should be but the least edited looks still unreal to me. Anyway, who doesn’t like huge eyes and flawless skin for a change?

Eat shave ice – everyone loves it!
Ok, so first of all I still haven’t tried it yet so why am I promoting it? At the beginning of our stay there were almost summer-like temperatures in Tokyo and people were craving for refreshment. I had heared about shave ice and was ready to try it but somehow I always kept postponing it to find the best looking one. There were people enjoying it everywhere and everyone seemed to love it, children with their strolling parents as well as seniors sitting in the shade of wisterias. And while I kept postponing it (I’m not that much of a sweet tooth anyway) we moved on to Hokkaido and the season changed and suddenly no one was eating it anymore. But – I’m sure it tastes delicious! It’s probably comparable to a snow cone but the texture of the ice is probably much better when it’s shaved.

Ok, so this was a mix of different things we did in the cities. I also spent a lot of time in the Donkihote, that’s really a must when in Japan and of course with eating…
But more of that in the next blog entry! I also made some videos in the subway and stores but I have no experience in cutting them so we’ll see but I hope I can show you some of them real soon.

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