Utsonomiya,
and More Snapshots and Oddities


Dave and I went to Utsonomiya for gyoza. On the way I saw this bike parking lot out the train window.


After we had gyoza we killed some time at a shopping mall, since there's nothing else to do in Utsonomiya and it was too hot to wander around outside. In Japan you don't have to go to specialty stores to buy musical instruments, you can just get them at random electronics stores.


Some of them are red.


This statue is from a shrine near my hotel in Saitama. (Also, by the way, very satisfactory, if you ever need to stay somewhere in Saitama.)


This is the mobile phone I rented. Everyone in Japan uses these gigantic flip phones. I guess they got tired of really tiny phones and went back to a more sensible size.


On my last full day in Tokyo we went down to Tokyo Bay, which is Tokyo's "Harbourfront". On the way we passed Kyu Shiba Rikyu garden, which is more like the kind of park I'm used to.



We took a ferry across the bay to the touristy part. This is the standard "back at the city" shot. (While we were at Tokyo Bay we shopped in a big mall and then took a monorail back to the city! It's Doug Ford's dream town!)


The waterfront area has a raised walkway all along it, I'm not entirely sure why. There's also a regular boardwalk-style path closer to the water.


Back in the city, we stumbled upon Miyazake's clock. Sadly because the whole country was saving energy due to a couple of nuclear power plants being offline, the automaton part of the clock was switched off. But it's still pretty freaking amazing just to look at.


This is such a simple, obvious thing: a power bar with a switch for each outlet. So simple I didn't bother buying one in Japan, but I haven't been able to find one here since I got back.


This is the pretty lady associated with the wonderful doodad that Dave lent me, which created a magical wifi hotspot around it. (The hotel in Saitama bafflingly didn't have wifi.)


Nuts and fish, together at last! Sadly I had spent my very last yen by the time I saw this at the airport.


According to this map, the flight from Tokyo to Toronto flies exactly over Big River. Hi Mum!


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