Tag Archives: Travel

In The Beginning – Part IV

1 Jun

+ Downtown Tokyo

What trip to Japan wouldn’t be complete without a trip to downtown Tokyo right? Well when I came to visit in February 2011, we spent 3 glorious days there (and barely even brushed the surface of all the Tokyo has to offer)! Seeing as how it takes about 1.5 hours by subway to get downtown from the base, we decided to book a room at the New Sanno – a military hotel that thankfully offers amazing prices, but also books weekends a year in advance.

Day 1:

The first day we decided to admire the city from above. And while most people would probably choose to do this from Tokyo Tower (the red and white Eiffel Tower looking thing) – we opted for the observation deck on the 52nd floor of Mori Tower in Roppongi so that we could actually get a view of Tokyo Tower, see?

Ok, ok so we went for the view AND the beers.

And they even let you go up to the roof for an even more breathtaking view!

Day 2:

The next day we attempted to see Ginza. {I say attempted because we somehow got off at the wrong station or left out of the wrong exit}. BUT, never fear because we accidentally ended up at the Imperial Palace! And although you can’t go inside without making reservations, we did get some pretty great views.

And we still made it to Ginza later on in the day too. {I made sure of this – hello, it’s the most expensive real estate in the WORLD!} Not only did we soak in the riches of it all, we also visited the famous Sony Building – 8 floors of glorious electronics, and 1 happy husband.

We saw some pretty outrageous crosswalks too, although I hear the real famous ones are in the Shibuya area – a place we have yet to explore.

We finished off the day with a trip to Akihabara – the overpriced famous electronics district.

Day 3:

Our last day downtown was spent in Asakusa, the “old Japan”. Even though it didn’t look very old to me, it still had touches of past times that you don’t see throughout the rest of the city (like trolleys and rickshaws).

They also have an abundance of souvenir shops where you can pick up your fill of chopsticks, samurai swords, and hello kitty products.

And in case you missed it, don’t forget to check out In The Beginning Parts I, II, and III.


In The Beginning – Part III

11 May

This post holds a special place in my heart – and what better day to post it than today…our 6 month anniversary! Seriously? I swear, sometimes life moves too fast. And I am realizing that as I look back, I can remember moments but those moments are hazy. {I think I can thank my parents for that} 😉  So I’ve decided I need to start documenting my life more – documenting so that when life gets too big, I can always remember the little things.

Enough with the sappy epiphany? You got it!

+ Mt. Fuji

My favorite part of my trip last year was Mt. Fuji – for obvious reasons, even if we didn’t see much of the mountain itself. First off, a word to the wise – don’t visit Mt. Fuji when it’s raining. Duhhhhh. In all honesty, we did contemplate going another day. In fact, I suggested Thursday (it was then Tuesday) – as it was supposed to be the sunniest day of the week  – but Collin was quick to say “no, that’s too late”. {He did have secret plans up his sleeve, after all}.

So, with two websites predicting rain and two others predicting sun, we took our chances and headed for the mountain. And THIS is what we saw when we got there:

Can you see Mt. Fuji? Yeah, neither could we. Here I am posing in front of what we thought might be a cloud covered Mt. Fuji.

We later learned that I, in fact, was not standing anywhere close to being in the right direction of Mt. Fuji.

Disappointed, but not losing hope, we decided on an impromptu stay in the area – you know, just incase Mt. Fuji decided to show itself tomorrow? And seeing as how Japan is famous for its Onsen…why not stay at one of those? We decided on Kukuna. Basically because it was the cheapest we could find – let me tell you, they do not offer discounts when your room with a view doesn’t come with a view… But regardless, the hotel was amazing and I’m glad we did it – in true Japanese fashion, no less. {Ok, that’s because the Western style rooms were either sold out or double in price – but you know what they say, when in Rome!}

Here’s a picture of our room, can you tell what’s missing?

That’s right, a bed! Where was our bed? Well tucked away in the closet of course.

But not to worry, while we were out having dinner {which we quickly learned is about the only thing there is to do in this town when it’s cloudy} the hotel made our bed for us.

TA-DA! Ok, so I will admit I was excited to be staying in a “Japanese style” room while in Japan. Until I slept on the bed….those are not for the weak my friends.

But all set-back aside, this trip was TOTALLY worth it. Why? Because I got engaged!!! So maybe we couldn’t see Mt. Fuji, but we knew it was somewhere behind those clouds. And would you know? The next morning we finally got a quick glimpse of the amazing mountain.

I wouldn’t trade that rainy, cloudy trip for the world. It was perfect in my book. In fact, we can see Mt. Fuji from right here on base, and every time I look up and see that mountain, I’m taken back to that perfect day. But I can also tell you I’m excited to see Mt. Fuji for real – as in climbing it this summer. It’s at the top of my wish list for Asia – so who’s coming to visit and climbing with me??


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