Tuesday, October 25, 2011

One Step at a Time

Just a regular set of stairs leading down from a building to the sidewalk. But sometimes the most simple things catch my eye and I ended up taking a lot of pictures here. This angle was my favorite.

Well, I am off to attend a wedding for my best friend from high school this weekend so I won't be able to post until next week. But I'm hoping I can stop by and comment on all your posts and squeeze in a Skywatch photo on Friday from the hotel...we'll see how that goes. I'm super excited to see my friend get married but as I've been asked to do a speech at the reception, a first time for me, I'm REALLY nervous about that. Wish me luck!

Hope you all have a wonderful week!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Veggie Delight

This restaurant is called "Noka no Daidokoro," which translates to "Farmer's Kitchen."

I love this place because of the variety of vegetables they have to offer. They get their fresh vegetables straight from over 300 domestic farmers, of which many are organic. Their menu also has an Vegetable Only course, which is perfect for me as a vegetarian.

But not to worry, for those of you who need more than just vegetables, they also have courses that offer meat and fish with the vegetables!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Soft Sunshine

The air is full of fall these days.

You can even see it in the sunlight and I am loving every minute of it. Spring actually used to be my favorite season until I became allergic to cedar pollen and that just ruined the whole season for me. I still like spring but fall became my favorite season, even though we usually only have about a week to enjoy it.

But this year it's been unusually chilly from the end of September and we've been enjoying a long fall season. I'm hoping mother nature spoils us by keeping this gorgeous weather around for a little while longer!

See other wonderful reflections from around the world
at Weekend Reflections hosted by James.

Friday, October 21, 2011

West Side Stories

This is a view of the skyscrapers on the west side of Shinjuku Station.

The building on the left is Hyatt Regency Tokyo and the one on right is the Tokyo Metropolis Government building. Shinjuku Chuo Park is right behind these buildings and it's a great spot to peek at the tall buildings through the trees.

It's finally Friday and I don't know about you but I'm ready to embrace the weekend. Hope you are all doing well this weekend, too!

Enjoy looking at more beautiful skies all around the world here.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ready, Set, Go

People lining up at the crossing, waiting for the light to change...everyone inching forward little by little in anticipation.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Pots and Plants

I love how all these random pots and plants are lined up in front of this house.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Chop Goes the Stick

This is also a photo from the Korean restaurant.

I thought it was interesting how Koreans use both the chopsticks and the spoon for their meals. Although we have spoons and forks in Japan, traditionally we only use chopsticks.

Korean chopsticks are made of metal and are flat, as you can see in the photo, as apposed to Japanese chopsticks which are usually made of wood and are round or squared. I like how a lot of the Korean chopsticks have interesting designs carved in the metal.

Curious to hear how many of you have chopsticks at home!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Food From Next Door

Here in Japan, we refer to fall as "Shoku-yoku no Aki (食欲の秋)." This roughly translates to "Autum, the season to eat."

I think it comes from the fact that fall is the season of harvest...and maybe also the fact that a lot of people lose their appetite during the hot muggy summer season has something to do with this expression as well. And true to its words, I have really been eating a lot lately!

Yesterday I went to eat Korean food with a friend. Korean food is very popular in Japan and we even have a "Korean Town" neighborhood here in Shinjuku, which is like walking down a street in Seoul.

We had Japchae (first photo), Jjigae (second photo), and Tteokbokki (last photo) which was all really good. Some of the dishes are really hot and spicy, especially their kimchi and other dishes using the chili peppers. But it's very tasty and one of my favorite places to eat out!

Have you tried Korean food? What's your favorite dish?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Window Shopping

The Gucci store in Shinjuku underwent a full-scale renovation and re-opened on September 17th.

To celebrate it's opening, a famous manga artist named Hirohiko Araki is collaborating with Gucci and releasing a short story manga called "Rohan Kishibe goes to Gucci." Rohan Kishibe is a character in one of Araki's manga series, "JoJo's Bizarre Adventure (ジョジョの奇妙な冒険)."

There is also a gallery on the third floor of this building with his manga artwork but you can also see an animated version of the fall collection in the display window of the Gucci store.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Sports Day

Today is Sports Day in Japan. It originally was a national holiday celebrated on October 10th, as it began after 1964 Tokyo Olympics and that date was when they had the opening ceremony. But in 2000, the holiday was changed to the "second Monday of October." But as it happens, today is actually the 10th of October!

It's said that it rarely rains on Sports Day and sure enough, today was a gorgeous day. I spotted a little boy trying to ride his big kid bike today. Not sure if this is the safest or smartest place to practice...but I guess you have to start somewhere.

A little off topic, I've been away the last two weekends helping out (or more like hanging out at) a tennis tournament we had here in Tokyo. It's not in Shinjuku but I thought a few pictures couldn't hurt, as today is Sports Day.

 This was the finals game on Sunday. The seats were packed as both Mr. Nadal and Mr. Murray are popular players among the Japanese fans. I always love climbing up to the top of the stands and snapping a few shots from above.

Hope you all had a lovely weekend, too!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Fall Skies

The sky was almost purple.

I love summer because I get off of work before sunset. As the days start getting shorter in the fall, by the time I get off work, it's already pitch black outside. I'll miss heading home under a pretty sky like this.

Happy weekend everyone!

Enjoy looking at more beautiful skies all around the world here.

Also see other wonderful reflections from around the world
at Weekend Reflections hosted by James.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Precious Blooms

This is a type of orchid we call "Kocho-ran (胡蝶蘭)" in Japanese.

They are really gorgeous and smell heavenly. In Japan, this Orchid plant is often given as gifts to celebrate new companies or a launching of something.

These Orchid plants have long branches that droop over where the big flowers are growing neatly in a row. And it's a known fact, although I'm not sure if it's still true, that each branch costs about 10,000 yen. (About $100...or a little less now with the high yen rate.) Isn't that ridiculously expensive?

Most of these Orchid plants in the photo bellow had 5 branches each!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Full Plate

This was my lunch the other day. And yes, that's including the fried noodles, which we call Yakisoba, in the top right corner. Needless to say I couldn't finish it all and ended up getting both of the Onigiri, also known as rice balls, as a take-out.

Very full and very happy stomach!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Best Seat in the House

Sports Day, which is actually a national holiday here in Japan, is coming up next week. The days are getting shorter and the air is quite crisp. It's the perfect time to go out and enjoy it!

Last week I went to see a baseball game...and actually got to sit in the dugout. It's been ages since I last sat in a dugout. I was pretty excited to see the action so close.

And there's nothing better than the sound of the baseball hitting the bat!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Me Tarzan

Just one more shot of the day with the monkeys...I mean, kids!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Kids R Us

I've been absent for a week now...this have been beyond hectic. But I think I may be back. Pretty sure, anyways! Hope you've all been doing well and having a great week!

Last week I had a chance to hang out with some kids. This may not seem like anything special, but for a single girl living on her own...it's not everyday we get to interact with kids. So it was really fun getting to hang out with a couple of 8-year-old-ish kids.

You can see them fiddling with my cellphone in my photos...but not to worry. They were all over the jungle gyms and forever shooting imaginary bazookas at us and making us chance them around trees and whatever stood in their way. If I had to do that every day, I would probably keel over on the third day...but for the few hours I had with them, it was a blast! What is it about kids and their antics that make  you grin all the way home?

Thank god for kids...they made my day!