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Friday, April 30, 2010

a note from the Penninsula-Tokyo

Greetings Mr. Black,

Hope that your rambles through Texas are treating you well.  Give my regards to the crowd in Houston.  A Shiner Bock sounds lovely at the moment.

My travel gyre is ever expanding and collapsing.  Currently re-tracing the steps of a month ago in Tokyo.  Just a three day work binge but still plenty of time to get completely and utterly lost in the cliches (all true) of a squirming and electron drenched city scape.  The four shirts are holding up nicely despite a run in with the hotel laundry last week in Singapore.  Love Raffles- just not a massive fan of outsourced laundry services in general.  On an interesting note I did wear my Changi fabric shirt while moving through its namesake on my trip back to Capetown.

There are indeed lesser places to decompress than the Penninsula.  Upon arrival I was deposited by the car quickly and silently.  Black out shades where a button away as was I (note to go easier on the in flight pharmaceuticals next time).

After forcing myself into a full upright position I wandered out into the Imperial Gardens before my meeting.  One could go berserk with a camera here. Still groggy so not the best of eyes at the moment.

Still, eyes closed and deep breaths (while trying to filter out soot) help.  When stopping and listening the gaijin abroad cocktail party chatter effect is immensely disorienting.  We would have paid for this feeling in our twenties.

Before dinner I managed to run by (if you can indeed "run by" a 5 story stationary shop) ito-ya for the usual load up of paper and writing instruments.  Somehow I managed to drop a substantial amount of cash in short order.  My room now looks similar to one of those stationary shows that women in the South put on except my papers and pens are Japanese and therefore infinitely cooler.

Dinner found me descending into the basement of a Ginza address and entering the lair of Hachiro Mizutani's eponymous Mizutani.  Basically a closet (in a good way) with a Michelin 3 star chef working his sushi magic.  Try the shad.  Cash only and no photos.  The master himself:

Based on Ran's suggestion,  the next morning finds me at Tsukiji market.  I didn't make the 5:00 opening bell and things where a bit picked through but lots to see.  After managing to see a bit of the giant tuna auction It's hard to imagine there is anything left in the sea....

Another night to go and hopefully a visit by train to Custom House Stinky.  Just amazed at some of the cafe racers the local shops are putting together over here. Can Fed Ex do bikes? I must earn my keep so I'm off.



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