12 million people in this city I attract the two biggest freaks!

Nagashimi Bridge

Originally uploaded by Toniwoni

To put it bluntly, I have had a pants weekend. My cold turned into flu without actually developing properly i.e. I don’t have a cough or runny noise but rather a headache, fever and feeling like I’ve been hit by a ten tonne truck so trying to take on a city where there is virtually nowhere to sit down and relax means that I can’t wait to get out of here on Wednesday!

It’s not that I haven’t enjoyed my stay, it’s just that there really is no where to just sit back, relax and take the city in. Everyone is rushing around with a purpose and you feel a bit like a shark…stop swimming and you’ll die (or get stamped on by some very pretty shoes!)

And of course, let’s not forget the two absolute (insert swearword that rhymes with ticks) ‘idiots’ that honed in on me making me wish, for once, that I wasn’t so obviously foreign…or blonde….or English. The first prat was when I was stood outside Shibuya station minding my own business. He was a dodgy 40-something Caribbean social reject that told me I ‘looked good’. Cue my entire body sounding off warning sirens to my brain. This dude just wouldn’t get the hint despite me telling him I was waiting for someone…he asked if we could go for coffee and wouldn’t leave me alone until I took his phone number. God, just thinking about him makes my skin crawl. Anyhow…I used my common sense and when I realised he would be on the same train as me, waited behind at the station and caught the one just after. THEN, I had some ‘nice before I got to know him’ Japanese skeeze called Akira. It showed me a little around Harajuku (we got talking after he offered to take a photo for me) and we talked about London etc and things seemed to be going really well until he held my hand and called me ‘cute’. This is one instance where I would have done anything to be considered ‘f*** ugly’, morbidly obese, German or a combination of all of the above. Long story short, I actually had to leave Harajuku itself just to get away from him!

So of course, feeling as shitty and ill as I was and coming across these two freaks made me ‘sick to death of Tokyo’. The only rest and relaxation I seemed to be getting was at night when I finally got back to my hostel and I have to say that I was really looking forward to getting out of here but not about going to Hong Kong…another ridiculously busy city. Oh and speaking of Hong Kong; it’s busy all the time right? Well, the weekend I’ll be there is the busiest of the entire year because of a rugby tournament called the Sevens. Oh joy lol.

Anyway, what have I actually been up to for the last couple of days?
Saturday was a couple of hours spent in Ueno Park which was huge but because it was 20 degrees and the sun was out, all of Tokyo was there too! But it was still pleasant to walk around and there were some Sakura (cherry blossom) blooming already which were nice to see. Then I popped over the Shibuya to do a bit of shopping (so sue me…it’s a National past time over here!). I got lost a couple of times around the small streets but since I didn’t have a destination to get to in the first place it didn’t really matter. Then it was a quick stop ‘home’ before heading out to Shinjuku. Word to the wise, although Shinjuku is the ‘it’ place to go, god help you having to take on that station! My head, it took me 15 minutes just to find an effing exit! Needless to say, I was already wanting to go ‘home’ by the time I popped up on a street haha. However, the ‘lights, camera, action’ were fun to look around and I’m glad I made it 🙂

Then yesterday, as I said, I went to Harajuku and had a good look around. Literally, the only place you need to go in Harajuku is Takeshita Dori which is the famous street for the Harajuku girls but I didn’t see any in costume 🙁 Just a crap load of people shoved into a street no wider than a car. I’m not joking, I’ve never seen anything like it…just make sure you go with the crowd not against it or you’ll never make it out alive! haha But as I said, I didn’t really enjoy it because I had this absolute nutjob following me around like a dog on heat. Ugh. So I promptly left…hung around Shibuya for a bit and headed back to my hostel before going out for dinner in ‘my neighbourhood’. I was having a real ‘sorry for myself’ day and felt like crap so didn’t want to go too far.

Today I feel a bit better about things – I’m still ill but not in the ‘I hate Tokyo’ kind of way and I’m back to looking forward to Hong Kong so it’s all good. It has been quite a relaxing day…I went back to the Imperial Palace to see the famous bridge which was lovely to look at as you can see from the photo. Then it was a hop, skip and a jump back over to Harajuku to finish what I started yesterday. I also bought some GREAT soveneirs! I actually got them from the 100 yen store (99c store for all my Americanos). It sounds really tacky but they have the weirdest and cheapest mementos you’ll ever find – bargain city! =) And before I knew it, it was late-afternoon so I jumped back to the hostel, had a shower and went to Shibuya for dinner. I don’t know his name but I got talking to this huge Japanese guy in this little restaurant whilst we sat at the counter and it turns out he’s a Sumo wrestler! Awesome haha

Last full day tomorrow so I’ll be hitting all the the ‘loose ends’ to wrap my Tokyo tour up.
p.s. A message for family and friends…I set this blog up for you guys to keep in touch and all I’ve got is a wall of silence; what gives?! xx

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  1. Jamie T

    I’m still reading!

    But havn’t commented again because all I can think to say is that the jealousy is slowly burning a hole in my soul…

    Glad you’re still cheerful despite the illnesses and colourful characters 😀 You’d probably have met twice as many in that time wandering Torquay!

    Keep Smiling 🙂
    J. x

  2. Jill

    Hi Toni
    I’ve been following your exploits but have had little time to do more than just read! Hope you’re feeling a lot better now. Tokyo sounds fascinating and getting to see Mount Fuji – wow! Love seeing the pictures of Sheepy & Duke:-)Have a great time in Hong Kong.

  3. what a funny experience…

    something to tell your friends and family about… good thing that you were able to get away from them fast…

    enjoy your trip Toni… dont let anyone or anything spoil it…


    I love the pic of the bridge, im not sure if the castle o the background is himeji…

    oh! did you try the ramen?

  4. Well you’re certainly having adventures! What are you wearing when you go out? It’s bad enough being blonde in Asia but are you dressing to blend in or like you’re a foreigner? Trust me, it really helps to dress like the locals. And I’d adopt a Dutch or French accent and pretend you don’t understand English to ward off those jerks following you!

  5. Rachel – feeling a bit better but not great 🙁 I’ll get there eventually…hopefully when I hit a beach in Thailand! haha

  6. Fly Girl – Unfortunately, I stick out like a sore thumb. Unless I buy a suit or dress like a ‘stereotypical looking Asian hooker’ I’ve got no chance of fitting in! haha

    Flip – Well they say you have to experience the ‘highs and lows’ of travelling to get a full picture of it…they were definitely a low! I don’t think it’s the main castle in the bridge photo…I think the castle itself is so deep in the Imperial Palace Gardens that you can’t view it from the outside! Yep tried Ramen I think…it was ok actually 🙂

    Jill – ok you’re forgiven…I know how busy you get with work aka your competitions 🙂 Only kidding…good to know you’re reading!

    Jamie T – seeing as your lack of comments are driven by your jealousy I think I can let it slide, just for you 🙂 I think the ‘colourful characters’ are more annoying over here because it seems that being foreign almost makes it a ‘right of passage’ in their minds, to bug the hell out of you and ‘practice English’. Whatever. Freaks and weirdos haha Glad I’m leaving tomorrow though – definitely had my fill of Tokyo!

  7. Alison

    Took me a while to think about what rhymes with ticks but I got there in the end lol.

    Hong Kong will be busy but try Hong Kong Island for a slightly quieter scene. I seem to recall a lovely green area in the middle near the racecourse but hey it was a long time ago that I was there so I can’t guarantee I have remembered it right.
    A x

  8. chris

    Im a readin but not commenting!!!!