Go fish, localgov, cosplay and curry

Friday 3rd May, 2013

Having been to the auction yesterday today we chose to visit the retail side of Tsukiji. It was absolutely fantastic and although we got there a little late and things were being packed away you still got a sense of the thing. It was also good to be able to poke around away from the hordes of people who would be there normally. I think the vendors probably enjoy seeing off squeamish tourists, none more so than the guy who took great delight in skewering a fish with a metal rod down its spine while we watched (killing it but preserving the body of the fish).

From there we took in local government, Tokyo style, and took advantage of the observation deck in the hope that we might see Mount Fuji. We didn’t but the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office Observation Room Ubiquitous Guidance System did a good job of identifying every tall building in the city. Best of all it was free!

Tokyo is famed for its fashion (apparently) and lots of the guide books say you need to visit Harajuku, Shinjuku and Shibuya. So we did, and saw shops and people shopping – underwhelming. We did see some superb examples of cosplay and we also ate some fantastic gyoza but there wasn’t much else to report. We stopped at the famous Shibuya Crossing and witnessed the sea of people walking across the road – again, frankly, an overhyped Tokyo experience.

I was quite keen to dig around Akihabara in search of Japanese gadgetry so Christine went back to the hotel and I went off on my own. I was quite keen to replace the camera I had lost but I was in danger of getting tempted by massive savings, rather than buying something appropriate to our needs. I resisted temptation (despite the hundreds of pounds that could be saved) but I’m afraid it hasn’t stopped me casting envious looks at the fancy kit slung round the necks of other travellers we’ve met on the road or thinking maybe we could have captured this, or that, better if I’d bought something.

It was pretty late by the time I got back to the hotel so we had a late curry round the corner from the hotel. I that’s part of a chain specialising in curry. As this was Katsu Curry it was very different to going for an Indian and it was also different to the Katsu served at home but as we’ve come to expect in Japan it was pretty tasty!

About Benjamin Welby

Hi, I'm Benjamin Welby. I'm a displaced northerner currently living in Croydon, I church with a group of Christians who meet in a Soho nightclub on Wednesdays and I support Bradford City. I've an academic background in History, Politics and International Development. I work for the Government Digital Service but I left my heart in local government. This blog is infrequently updated and may feature any, all or none of these things...