Sunday, May 8, 2011

東京 Part 4-Lemons and Lemonade

Day two.  We broke out the map and made a game plan.  Not sure when Yuma would call us (and not sure if he had to work or not), we charged onward by ourselves.  We hopped on the Yamanote line and were whisked away to Tokyo station were we planned to explore the Imperial Palace.

Alas...our plans were met by locked doors. 

As I found out later, you must make reservations for guided tours in advance.  There were also signs posted everywhere saying something in kanji about the 大地震 (okiijishin-big earthquake)...anyway, it appeared to be closed.  残念!(zannen-Too bad!)

We were still able to explore a bit outside the walls.  This is what we saw:

Isn't it lovely? I look forward to taking an actual tour of the inside of this place! We were disappointed, but we pulled out our Tokyo tourist map and hunted down something else to do.

We proceeded to adventure to a big park across the street.  The park was many city blocks long.  The whole place was bustling with action of one sort or another.  In one corner a wedding was taking place, live music in another, tennis courts with full of the athletic, painters had situated themselves all about to take in and interpret the scenes around them. 

This part of the park was full of turtles basking in the sun.
We wandered around until we found a charming outdoor restaurant.  We stopped.  It was an Italian style place.  Karl and I both ordered risotto soups.  They were absolutely wonderful! They were served in little cauldron looking vessels.  Original. 

There were lots of stray cats in the park.  They were funny little things.  They stuck their tongues out.  They weren't panting...I couldn't figure out what the deal was.

We also found this-a solar powered clock.  Neat!

After leaving the park, we we walking back towards Tokyo station and happened upon an interesting Museum.  We stopped in to take in this exhibition.  It was very interesting.  Unfortunately, all the information was in Japanese and French.  Hooray.  I pooled all of my collective knowledge of language (which is not nearly enough) and tried to figure things out.  Fun!

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