I went to JAPAN!!!
One of the perks of having a cabin crew boyfriend is that I can tag along on his trips. When he told me he’d been given a flight to Tokyo and asked if I wanted to join him I thought he was mocking me (my dissertation was due in a couple of weeks and I was unhappily working in the library). But it was a genuine offer! Which meant frantically finishing off another essay so I could warrant a couple of days off work and heading to the airport in the hope that there would be a free seat on the plane.
There was a seat free! Despite the fact I was sat amongst a pack of children on a school trip, who delighted in staring and whispering when I tried to sleep, I was too excited to care. And because I was a cabin crew’s ‘cling-on’ I was treated to extra wine and snacks – the dream! (Though I think this is meant to be kept a secret shh).
The hotel was incredible. As the tallest building in Yokohama, the view from our room was amazing, especially at night with the city below us lit up. The lobby featured marble floors, and giant vases holding beautiful white lilies and orchids. The Japanese people we met were so polite, using two hands to pass something to you, be it a train ticket or a coffee, and bowing their head slightly as they do so.
When we arrived it was early morning in Japan, though the middle of the night in England and we were exhausted. After a short negotiation we decided it would be best to go straight out and explore, otherwise we’d waste half the day sleeping and we were keen to make the most of our two days away. So after a quick change we headed to the train station, bound for Tokyo.
This is where we struggled. Two gangly blondes in Japan stand out quite a bit, add the language barrier and the fact we couldn’t work out the train system and we made quite a show. Eventually we made it onto a train and sat peacefully until our change. We got off this train and onto another, blissfully unaware that we were heading back the way we had come! After some trial and error we made it to the centre of Tokyo!
Our first stop was Shibuya crossing and it was a strong first impression. People, people, people everywhere! I became the classic tourist and was snapping away, as you can see.
By this time we were desperate for food and sushi came to our rescue. We found The Standing Sushi Bar filled with locals, all eating off leaf plates. BEST SUSHI EVER! It smelt like a fishmonger and the fish was obviously super fresh and so delicious.
After wandering around the shops for a bit we stumbled upon a cherry blossom festival. We were so lucky as the trees only flower for a few weeks a year. Blossoms smothered the streets either side of the river and the pavements were buzzing with people, drinking, and eating street food. Just look at how beautiful they were!
By this point we’d been awake for almost 24 hours and after checking sushi and blossoms off my Japanese checklist we headed back to the hotel (and didn’t get lost on the train this time!). We stopped for Katsu curry on the way – in a restaurant that only served Katsu curry! Then we fell into bed, yes, two twenty-somethings in Japan asleep before 7pm!
To be continued…
Have a happy week xx