I got back from Japan last week. For the most part of this week, after spending 8 nights in a hotel room about the size of our bed at home, I was glad to be back. It was my fourth time in Japan, and it finally stopped being delusional-ly magical.
This time I had a bad ramen, wasn’t happy with my sushi platter, and didn’t eat any onigiri. I can already imagine both VI and Yin shaking their head disapprovingly — I know you guys, I am disappointed in myself, too, but in my defense, they didn’t have any pink sticker salmon onigiri in the Lawson.
I encountered a semi-rude waiter (nothing compared to Singapore’s “hospitality”), cold weather, and way too many tourists.
In Harajuku, I queued in the Harry the Hedgehog cafe line for a half hour before realizing it wasn’t the ramen queue. And the bookstore, Tatsuya, in Shinjuku didn’t sell books nor stationaries. It just had Starbucks coffee.
I took a wrong train route and ended up in a rural area outside of Tokyo, took another wrong train and had to run to a tour meeting place before 7AM, and took yet another wrong train before deciding to just simply throw the ticket away and find my own way back to the hotel.
Disney Sea was a let down. I left by lunch time after only spending a few hours, and a few hundred dollars, there. Gasp! I know! How could I not enjoy Tokyo Disney after wanting to go there for years and years. But yeah, I didn’t..
I got into an accident. I fell on the train station stairs, which of course seems inevitable as I have yet to acquire the skill of running on stairs while wearing a puffy jacket and juggling a heavy bag and various paper bags.
To top it all, I, together with 20 more people were held hostage by American tourists for three hours in the Toshogu Shrine car park, in the cold and in the dark.
At the end, I couldn’t wait to board the 11-hour plane ride back to Melbourne.
With all these issues, you might think I would be done with Japan. Even I thought so, for a few days. But now, only a week after leaving Japan, I start making plans about the next trip.
I have yet to try natto and the vending machine corn soup. I want to visit Takasaki (to burn my wish granting Daruma Doll), Nagoya, Okinawa, Manabeshima, Fukuoka, and Shikoku, to name same.
The good news is there is a discount flight from Melbourne to Japan, but the bad news is I don’t have annual leave anymore. This problem would easily be solved if I lived in Japan. I even picked a neighborhood in Tokyo, where I would live, Nakameguro.
For me, Japan is not a love affair, it’s more like a lifetime to be lived.