Last moments in Tokyo

I’m really sorry for my tardiness, I didn’t mean to do it, I just didn’t know where to start.

Though I’m not a Spice Girl and possibly, if memory serves me correct, never really aspired to be one.  I found myself deliberately mimicking one, my last evening in Tokyo.

No…Yes…No…OK I’m comfortable with it.

Picture it.  . Singing, or maybe squealing out Wannabee, whilst hosting a pair of black hot pants (OK, nobody knew me), being supported by some, more than capable back-up singers, knowing that you are 28 minutes into your 30 minute allocation of your, very own karaoke box (visit Big Echo for a treat) with great friends (read, predominantly family). You feel invincible.  You have approx. 13 hours left in this country that you’d don’t wish to vacate. You’ve had a terrific meal.  Maybe, one more Sakura cocktail then conservative behaviour would recommend.  Obviously, this evening was pretty difficult to surpass.

So difficult in fact, I’ve found it incredibly challenging to return to my normal world.  Chiefly, as the feedback from my son regarding my singing was really positive.  Especially, as I’m commonly referred to as ‘Tone Deaf’.  Thus, it has taken over two weeks to write this unforgettable experience up.

Japan – I love you. What a super place to spend some time, even your whole life – though unfortunately, I’m not in the position to say.   Your people are so considerate, easy-going, polite and kind. Your adoption of thoughtful messages on your subway wouldn’t go amiss anywhere. Your plastic food displays for foreign speakers – thank you. Your temples – breath-taking. Your hot Saké – my husband is eternally grateful.

Your crazy, creature play toys appropriate for all ages – like Big Teeth Brown Bodied Furry Creation, his mate the Blue Alien or even Sweet Guinea Pig Beastie . I NEED IT! I love how Hello Kitty and Miffy are still really important and it’s OK that I’m almost 40, though it’s acceptable to accessorise with this stuff and not be credited as bonkers.

Thank you Japan for introducing me to the simple pleasure of chadō; enabling me to walk through my first bamboo forest; highlighting that giving something to someone with two hands is alot more respectful and even feels better than my usual one handed hand-over;  for being really well stocked with top shelf, small-sized museums (top picks for Tokyo- Idemitsu Museum of Art, Fukagawa Edo Museum, ADMT – Advertising Museum and the GA Gallery – for Architecture; And the Fureaikan – Museum of Traditional Crafts in Kyoto); temples (in Kyoto head to – The Temple of Ghi-ohji, Ginkaku-ji {alternatively known as the Temple of the Silver Pavilion} also home to some pretty impressive moss) and gardens (visit the Kiyosumi Gardens in Tokyo to admire the massive and beautiful carp and the aforementioned Bamboo Grove, next to the Tenryu Temple in the Sagano district of Kyoto).

Additionally, your public transport receives special mention thumbs up.  For not only are the subway + metro +JR lines in Tokyo, impressively integrated.  They aren’t too tricky for one, with no Japanese in them, to embrace and utilise.

Ahh, and the Shinkansen (Bullet Train)…though pricey – worth the splurge. It’s a super-efficient and an extremely fast way to get across Japan – so you can enjoy as much of her as possible.

I had such a fantastic experience and can’t wait to turn 40 again, so I can go back and celebrate.