Tokyo, the palace and the Japanese Octoberfest
30.05.2009 77 °F
After a ride back to Tokyo on the bullet train we found our way to the hotel using the map book. We are becoming quite proficient in getting around, but of course with addresses in Chinese or Japanese we find people can help much easier.
I was very disappointed when I found that neither Kubiki nor the Noh were playing this week as I`d wanted for Mike to see one. We also missed the Beijing Opera which is fun.
Instead we walked thru the extensive Imperial gardens at the Imperial Palace. Here we were disappointed that the Emperor did not receive us but we were well received with the common people. Nevertheless we were impressed with the massive walls around the palace, some stones were chest high to me. I though of Justin and Jenavieve and how they would appreciate that rock work but they would not be anxious to work on that wall in the 1600`s. The walls stand several stories high but there are gaps between rocks so it is difficult to see how intruders would be kept out.
We walked from the gardens to the Ginza district. It has changed since I was there in 1970 but as it was still light out I suggested that we sit down with coffee and wait for the sun to go down. We ducked into a little british pub and drank a beer instead.
After it was darker we started walking all over the Ginza, looking into shops and restaurants. The area under the train tracks is full of tiny restaurants so it was fun to peek into them, looking at the plastic food or photos of food.
After walking for quite awhile we ended up near a park and heard music and shouting so of course we went to investigate. We found Octoberfest going complete with German beers, sausages and actual German bands. The normally reserved Japanese were singing along and waving little German flags. As the evening went on some of the German band members, complete with laderhosen, went thru the crowds singing and yelling and some of the visitors who had been drinking for some time started dancing on the tables. It was absolutely wild and quite funny to see the Japanse version of Octoberfest in May.
I shot some video so will post it on U-Tube when I return.