Noodles and Beef

Japan Day 2

Our biological clocks still running on Pacific Standard, we were wide awake at 2am.  Perfect time to cab over to the Tsukiji fish market to catch the famous tuna auctions, explore the vendor stalls, and eat at the secret sushi bar hidden inside the fish market.

I was very happy.  Something about the singing Japanese men auctioning off tuna resonates with me.

My secret sushi place within the market was apparently no longer a secret.  A line wrapped around the store with a sad sign saying they couldn’t accommodate any more customers.

Sushi shops surround the outer market, but we were very disappointed.  The uni was not fresh at all.  

So we tried cleansing our palates exploring the outer market, buying pieces of raw, fresh fish that caught our eye and eating it on the spot.

Mmm.  Whatever that was.

Went back to the hotel, napped, hit the SONY flagship store at Tokyo Center.  Absolutely gorgeous interactive displays, complete collection of SONY lenses, but oddly overpriced above MSRP.

We ended up going back to Akihabara where I bought my new lens.

Then lunch at an all-you-can-eat shabu-shabu restaurant.  Wagyuu beef for ~$20 USD.  I was in heaven.

Caught the Yamamote line for the the Mega Pokemon Center, where I spent a lot of time playing with my new lens.  Its perfect for dramatic, sharp, architecture shots, macros, and tight portraits.  It could easily become my primary lens.

Big pup bought a three-foot-tall Charmander plush.  No idea how we’ll get that thing home.

Ended the evening at a small Tokyo-suburb onsen.

I wanted to take big pup to Takaragawa or one of the big onsen resorts in Tokyo, but couldn’t because of his full-body tattoos.  Most onsen (and even public beaches) refuse access to people with tattoos because fo the possible association with Japanese mafia, the Yakuza.  Sigh.

This little onsen was cute though.  A very unique, Japanese experience.

We shared the bath with a dozen families winding down during the middle of the week.  I got to practice my Japanese with a couple (presumably) salary men, while some kids asked if big pup was a professional wrestler.

Big pup enjoyed himself, that makes me happy :)

Japan Day 1

Big pup and I decided to visit Japan for an impromptu trip before I moved away to Seattle and started my new job.  Its a chance for us to have one last super big adventure.

Flight wasn’t so bad.  Found some sleeping pills in my duffle bag from my last trip so spent most of the flight passed out.  Woke up for meal service.  Chicken teriyaki with rice and this weird multi-grain salad:

Pretty delicious.  The photos don’t do it justice.

This was my first time flying through Narita airport.  A little older than Haneda, but not bad…  Had some trouble getting through with “my husband.”  I forgot that our marriage isn’t recognized here.  Or maybe they require a customs form for every adult.  Hmm.

Anyway.

Took the airport express train to Tokyo, then transferred to Akihabara.  Finally got to our hotel at 5pm.

It’s quite a bit bigger than I expected.  My last hotel room at Akihabara combined the shower and toilet into one…this at least breaks those apart.

Walked around for a bit exploring Akihabara.  Had some wonderful sushi, melon bread, and these cheese pastries.  Ended the evening at the Tokyo Station Pokemon Center.  Just a preview of the mega Pokemon center I’ll be taking big pup to.

Have an early morning tomorrow.  Bedtime.

brandedbulltank:

27/5/2016: Unexpected Family Dinner at Espetus - a Brazilian Steak House. Welcome home and Congratulations, Master! 

To New Opportunities and to New Adventures.

After cutting our trip to Tassajara short, this seemed like an appropriate detour. Thank you for a wonderful dinner, pups :)

Oh, hello there.

Join us? Plenty of room.

Flagging in the park with my pups.

Flagging season actually doesn’t start for another month, but Xavier wanted to have a birthday flagging party for all these April birthdays.

Chandler (the pup previously known as lilpup) came and celebrated with us :D

Eep, forgot to post these.

Took big pup to a hot springs resort in Callistoga for the anniversary of
our wedding. The resort itself is gorgeous, styled like a plantation and
surrounded by billowing steam from natural geysers. Spent the weekend
relaxing by the 100-degree thermal pool, then went to Ad Hoc for dinner
(probably our least favourite Thomas Keller restaurant, oh well).