What We’ve Been Up To….

It’s been a really great first week in Tokyo.  While we’re all still tired, we are starting to see the light at the end of the jetlag tunnel!

Friday, The Cuties had bus orientation and meet the teacher day at their new school and I got to ride the bus with them.  By good fortune, they each had children in their classes they’d met already ~ what are the odds!  I met a bunch of lovely ladies from the neighborhood as well and have a Mommy play date Monday after first day of school drop off!  Yay for me!

We decided to celebrate the end of our first week with dinner out at a soba noodle restaurant around the corner from our apartment.  Everything was really yummy and we had great fun practicing our loud slurping in our order to show our appreciation for the food, as is tradition in Japan.  The waitress brought me over a cup of soba tea at the end of the meal.  It’s considered “special” to be given this and is made from the water in which the noodles are boiled.

Here’s the thing.  I wasn’t a fan of soba tea.  At all.  In any way.  Get my drift?  But I knew it was a very kind gesture to bring it to me and drank the whole thing and made many thanks.  And then she kept bringing more!  Cute Husband was most amused at my attempts to hide my horror while minding my manners all at the same time.

Today we headed to Shibuya.

Shibuya is like Times Square on acid.  It’s where all the hip, young, fashionable people hang out in Japan.  We went there anyway. ;-)

Check it out:

We first had lunch at a great Korean barbecue place.  One of the reasons we were willing to embark on this adventure is that The Cuties are such adventurous eaters.  They tried everything.  The kimchi was a hit with all of us, and Little Cutie especially liked cooking the meat on the grill.

We next headed to a department store for washcloths.  Yes, washcloths.  Most public restrooms in Japan do not have paper towels or electric dryers, so everyone carries around small washcloths in their pockets or purses.  Of course because this is Japan, they are all lovely.  When we came back in June we each purchased one, but now that we are here for years, we need a real stash as one per person simply isn’t going to cut it.  There were hundred of designs and styles to chose from, and Big Cutie asked for her own bag and the kind saleslady wrapped them as if they were gifts for her.  {When I took this photo I flipped one of the bags over to show the tiny peekaboo window so you would know which item was which if you were purchasing many as presents ~ how clever!}

All that washcloth shopping made us a little hungry so we headed down to the basement for a snack.  The department stores in Japan have gourmet food and flower stands where you can get every kind of food imaginable.  We saw so many gorgeous things ~

Macaroons in every color of the rainbow

A topiary made of macaroons

Got a spare $200?  You can chose the shape watermelon you want! :-)

After our sustenance {we voted for gelato}, we made our way to Tsutsumo Factory.  The Lonely Planet Guide describes it as “the wrapping paper centre of the packaging-excess capital….carries hundreds of gorgeous washi.” I read that and felt as though the mothership was calling me home, and so off we went.

It was like a porn shop for crafters.

Since the store was so easy to get to, we showed great restraint and just bought washi tape.  I have been itching to get my hands on some but thought it was silly to order some on Etsy from Japan to be shipped to the States when I was moving there.

That’s restraint, I promise. ;-)

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3 Responses to What We’ve Been Up To….

  1. gena says:

    What a wonderful adventure you guys are on !!!!! You’re missing all the hoopla with Hurricane Irene…. so much hype – oy !

    How are the girls liking their new school ? I’ll bet they’re like little sponges, soaking up all the new and exciting things !!!!!

    Can’t wait to see and hear more !

    gena

  2. pam says:

    Love it. Seeing pictures of the girls made me smile. Plus all the adventures! We miss u guys!

  3. Audrey says:

    What amazing adventures you are having already! Noodle water tea sounds gross to me too. I prefer vanilla chai. :) Can’t wait to see what you make with your new treasures!

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