Saturday, October 20, 2018

Tokyo Flashbacks : Tower Records Database Farewell Party / 東京フラッシュバック : タワーレコードデータベース部送別会

This blog was only on hiatus as I moved from Tokyo to Aomori in November of 2016. But I still have a lot of Tokyo adventures I never got around to writing about. This, the first in my flashbacks of living in Tokyo was my going away party thrown for me by members of the database department of Tower Records, a company I had worked for from 1988 until 2013. That's twenty-three years at the big Yellow and Red! The party was held at an Italian restaurant in Aomonoyokocho, which was where Tower Record's main office was located. The name of the restaurant was [Gottsu Vigale].


Oh man! I don't have a neck!


I think this was a dessert pizza.


A going away gift from my co-workers. A collection of Earthshaker CDs. They all know I like hard rock and heavy metal.


The after party group photo. Whoever took the picture must have had one too many drinks. Or it could have been the camera I was using.


There will definitely be more flashback stories to follow.


Saturday, March 31, 2018

Goodbye Tokyo! / さらば東京

I know I know, I've been neglecting my blog. There hasn't been a new post in over a month. Although this post is about my final day in Tokyo, it does not mean it will be the end of this blog. I still have many Tokyo adventures I haven't written about that I will post from time to time. Of course, the longer I live in Aomori, the more posts there will be on my Aomori blog "Blue Forest Chronicles".


Looking out at the street from the front of our 4th floor aparment. On a clear day we could see Mount Fuji.


Looking out from our balcony.


We got rid of most of our other furniture but this is one piece we will be taking with us to Aomori.


About ten or twelve of those boxes are filled only with my CDs!


We are just waiting for the moving truck to arrive. I am saying goodbye to 20 years in Tokyo. Ten of them in this apartment with my wife. We will have a new start in Aomori as we will live with my wife's mother in a house.


Of course our tv is coming with us.


Good-bye Hikari Building, Room #402!


Our last look at the Carrot Tower in Sangejaya.


Cheers to a new start!


Last lunch in Tokyo Station before catching the Shinkansen to take us to Aomori.


And so my life in the great Metropolis of Tokyo has come to an end. Living up north in Aomori in snow country is going to be a new experience for me. Looking for a new job will also be a challenge. But here's to taking that great leap forward into the unknown!!


Monday, February 26, 2018

Last Drinks in Tokyo at Pigalle / 東京最後の飲み 「ピガール」

My last night out drinking in Tokyo was with a co-worker of mine from my Costco days. His name is Hachimonji. He is also from Aomori Prefecture. His hometown is Mutsu which is located on the Shimokita Peninsula. Anyway, we went out for a couple of beers and food and then decided to hit one other place. A craft beer shop I had been aware of but had never been which was located in my neighborhood of Sangenjaya. The name of the place is Pigalle. As this would be my last week in Tokyo, I thought it would be a great excuse to check the place out.


Some snacks at a nearby izakaya before heading to Pigalle.


Pigalle is a very small bar. Standing room only type of place.


Interesting interior. You could tell the owner was a big fan of movies.


I can't remember what brand of beer I ordered, but it was the stout on the left. My co-worker had the Abbot Ale. As my co-worker had to work the next day, we only had one beer here before calling it a night.


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

National Museum of Japanese History (Part 3) / 国立歴史民俗博物館 (パート3)

The third and final installment of my posts about the National Museum of Japanese History. It was a fun and interesting place. Something a bit different from other tourist attractions. And now it was lunch time, so we headed to the museum's restaurant and noticed an interesting item on their menu - curry made with ancient wild rice. I knew I had to try it. One of the others ordered the ancient wild hayashi rice.


Checking out the museum pamphlet / 博物館のパンフレットチェック中

Curry with ancient wild rice / 古代カレー

Hayashi rice with ancient wild rice / 古代ハヤシ

Lets dig in!


Afterwards, Yukio and Reiko dropped the rest of us at the train station as we made our way home. Mikako and I would be movie to Aomori the following Thursday.


On the train / 電車の中

New adventures would awaiting us up north!!


Tuesday, February 6, 2018

National Museum of Japanese History (Part 2) / 国立歴史民俗博物館 (パート2)

Continuing our tour through the National Museum of Japanese History. I said we have reached the Showa era (1926-1989). I lived in Tokyo during the years 1969 through 1973.


That's a pretty big bento box if you ask me.


This looks like a model of an early American colonial home.


This is a Type 38 rifle. It is displayed in such a way that you are encouraged to try lifting it. It weighs 3.9 kilograms (almost 9 lbs).


This is a replica of meals in the barracks. 


Replica of the barracks during the early Showa years.


Hanging scroll depicting life precepts in the final stages of the war (1944).


Gas mask for air defense.


I think these may be scenes of Occupied Japan.


More American goods were coming into the country after Japan lost the war. That Dagwood sandwich looks really good! I could go for one of those. It is from the comic strip [Blondie]. 


The modernization of Japan after the war.


One of Japan's most famous exports that was created during the Showa era. This model was the 1984 model of Godzilla which was based on the original 1954 model. 


Action figures of some of the hero characters I grew up with during my elementary years. From left to right is Tiger Mask, Ultra 7, Ultraman, and Mirror Man. My brother and I used to watch a lot of these shows on tv back then.


More cool stuff. I still have a lot of my pictures of Ultraman and the Masked Rider and other heroes which my brother and I mostly bought from a shop called "Sakura" that was located right outside of the main gate of the military housing annex where we lived.


It was an interesting trip through the history of Japan. Now it is time for lunch. We decided to eat at the restaurant here at the museum before making our way back home. My wife and I would have to make our final check of our apartment and other things before our move away from Tokyo. Still, I had a grand time in Tokyo for the last twenty years. The next twenty up north should be just as interesting.