April 28, 2013

Tokyo, Japan 2013 (Day 4)

When it Rains...

...it pours, and Tokyo is no exception. We Filipinos know rain, but not this kind. Springtime rain is cold, wet, and unrelenting. There is no wind factor to buffer you from the merciless pelting of the rain drops, and the rains keep going on and on and on for the whole day.  Our plan for that day was to tour around the Harajuku area, but the weather was so bad the we were only able to look at a couple of stores before giving up.

We were only able to go inside a few stores like Nike, Kyusyujangara Ramen (late lunch), and Daiso (no picture included),
but the weather was so bad that I wasn't able to take decent pictures.
No worries, we were able to go back to Harajuku.  More details about that area on future posts.

Keeping Up with the Solises

Former office mates of ours, Christian and Sarah, were also in Tokyo for vacation, so we planned to meet up for dinner in the Shinjuku area (as they booked their hotel somewhere in there).  We decided to try yakiniku at a place called Gyu-Kaku.

Tourist Tips:
  • Many non-fast food restaurants in Tokyo are situated in the basements of the buildings (as precaution for earthquakes? IDK), so most of the time what you would find is a small door/hole-in-the-wall type of entrance, having a sign of the restaurant beside it.  So, better be on the alert if your trying out the restaurant for the first time, and all you have as reference is a map.  Most of the signs are small and in Japanese, with the English subtitle scribbled at the obscure corner of the sign.
  • Cook-what-you-eat type of restaurants also apply the "time-limit" concept, which means that you are only allowed a certain number of minutes for the meal, after that they will politely drop hints i.e. bring in the bill, clear up the table, etc. to tell you that you that you need to finish up and find another place if you want to make tambay some more.
  • With the exception of high-end restaurants, payment is usually done in the counter (more or less by the entrance of the restaurant).  Servers will bring the bill to your table, but you will have to stand up and pay at the counter.
And, oo nga pala, in case you didn't know, Gyu-Kaku just recently franchised in Manila!!!  It's in Bonifacio Global City, just beside IHOP.  Hopefully, I can try it out some day.


View Larger Map

The rain still kept on going even after we had our dinner, so we decided to move to another venue so we can carry on our conversations.  See, Christian and Sarah are already living in Dublin, so we don't get see each other that often.  We came across this quaint cafe that sells coffee, tea and cake, and the pictures looked sooo good, so we went in despite our lesson learned regarding a la carte orders.  Buti na lang, libre ni Christian. Hehe.  It was nice catching up with the both of them.  Hope they enjoyed Japan as much as we did!


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