But I gotta write this so let's go.
In this blog, I'm going to list any miscellaneous thoughts or observations I had while in Japan, especially around Tokyo. If I think of any more, I will update this entry. It's highly likely that I won't remember everything right now. Then after that, we'll go into my swag / purchases. That section will be sorta photo-heavy. If you want to jump straight to that section, do a search for "swag/purchases" (make sure there are no spaces between the "/").
MY MISCELLANEOUS THOUGHTS OR OBSERVATIONS
- Tons of drink vending machines. Almost everywhere we went, we would run into a drink vending machine. There were a whole bunch of them lined up side-by-side on one block in Ikebukuro. I really wanted to try a lot of the different drinks, but I couldn't always tell which ones were energy drinks or coffee (I would prefer not to drink coffee). I also saw a cigarette vending machine, and a couple ice cream vending machines.
- Very few public trash bins. While there were tons of trash bins for drinks throughout Tokyo, there were very, very few trash bins for general trash. Maybe this is to discourage people from making miscellaneous trash while outside? (like if you were to eat a sandwich with a wrapper or something)
- Sidewalk scrapers. One time while we were walking down the streets of... Ikebukuro (I think), we saw a few people wearing face masks going around with a scraper and scraping stuff off the roads and sidewalks. Is that how the streets generally stay clean??
- Face masks everywhere. Seeing people wearing face masks are common.
- Lots of bicyclists but no bicycle helmets. I guess I'm just not used to seeing bicyclists without helmets, so I noticed this right away.
- Weather forecast and time on almost every TV program. Having the time and weather forecast on almost every TV program was quite convenient!
- An amazing love for Frozen. I could tell that Japan loved Frozen from all the Frozen-themed crane game machines, all the general merchandise, and that it was still in theatres! To be fair, it was released in Japan on March 14th, but that's still a long run-time. I was surprised... but in a good way. I wasn't sure if the different perspective on love would be appreciated. I'm happy that it was. I really enjoyed Frozen, too.
- Cashiers always speaking out the amount they receive and the change they give back to you. My sister was able to learn / make out some of the numbers that way, lol.
- Umbrellas up during rainy days. I was surprised to see almost everybody using umbrellas during the rainy days. I haven't used an umbrella in years.
- NO jaywalking or crossing during a red light! At least, I didn't see any! :)
The clothes I bought from H&M -- oh, I mean Uniqlo.
Lol, Uniqlo really does make me think of a Japanese H&M.
Goth clothes that I bought from Shibuya 109. The shop was called Glavil.
I also bought some stockings (bottom right) from a small shop called pocoapoco
that carried a ton of stockings and misc. undergarments. I would have bought more
if I had more time to browse.
A metal 3D puzzle + 5000 yen PSN card with Hatsune Miku's design. I bought these from Don Quijote. The snacks were covered in my JAPAN EATS blog.
Tiny charms that I bought from the Nakamise Shopping Street. The charm on the left represents "love" (this was given to one of my long-time close friends). The charm on the right is meant to keep bad spirits away (something I feel I need... kinda).
Some gachapons I got from Gachapon Kaikan. I should have taken pictures of them outside their capsules... but I didn't. I got two capsules from Mother 2, two capsules from Danganronpa, and the rest from other series. I actually got more, but I either
threw them out or gave them to my sister.
The souvenirs I got from the Meguro Parasitological Museum. The book looks
pretty gross, so don't click to enlarge this image if you are squeamish.
I mean, it even makes me a bit squeamish. I got a set of postcards, a mini-tote bag,
an English guidebook to the museum, and a pendant with this parasite called anisakis simplex.
I bought these used CDs from Super Retro Potato-kan. I got: Samurai Western OST,
a CD single for this video game called Prism Ark -Awake- (that I _just_ found out was an eroge, ha...), Ragnarok Online OST, Ever17 Singles Collection 1,
Game Vocal Best volume 2.
I bought these used CDs from Disk Union. I got: Vocaloid Best -Memories-,
Vocaloid Best -Impacts-, Mother 1+2, JAM Project -Maximizer~Decade of Evolution~,
Radiant Historia Piano Arrangement, JAM Project Best Collection III,
Final Fantasy VI OST (I love this soundtrack! <3)
Some of the swag I got from J-World. I got three One Piece gachapons ('cuz I love One Piece). I also got medals -- 1 medal for each attraction I visited.
These are how the medals look. I am so happy that I got Sanji for one of them (top left)!
Souvenirs that I bought from the J-World gift shop. I wasn't intending it, but it looked like I bought all One Piece-themed items. I got a tissue box cover, a 300-piece jigsaw puzzle, and bath salts (lol!). I wonder how the Sanji themed bath salts would smell?
Some stuff that I bought from Animate: Snow Miku's earmuffs, a gachapon of Rin, an empty small figure case (to bring some fragile item home), an empty plastic card case, a P4U key chain thing (I gave it away to a friend), a Felyne plushie.
Some cosplay items I bought from Cospatio. I got two fake glasses, two pairs of
colour contacts, and a tie from the anime Ouran High School Host Club.
A large empty figure case (to bring fragile things home) + a kodama plushy (from
anime movie Princess Mononoke) bought from Kotobukiya. The plushy has a bell in it
so it rings when you shake it (kinda like how it sounds
when it shakes its head in the movie).
Hatsune Miku figure won from the crane games in Akihabara. Woooooooot!!!
A bunch of One Piece-themed items bought from 7-11 when they launched some One Piece campaign. This was launched on the last day of my trip (when my luggage was all packed up), so I was glad I decided to visit 7-11 one last time.
The top four food items were buyable: chocolates in a round devil fruit container (yummy!), dried spicy ramen nuggets (were good but too spicy for me), fire devil fruit gummies (yummy!), soft chewy candies (yummy).
The bottom item was a prize you would get from a draw. Pretty much you pay at the counter to grab a prize ticket from a box. Then you open the ticket to see what letter grade prize you got. Then you pick from what's available for that level. I got the G grade prize level, and got to pick from one of three candy dish bowls. In case the picture isn't clear enough, I got the design with a silhouette of Luffy and the words "Straw Hat Crew" above.
About an hour later, I went back to 7-11 and paid for another draw, lol. This one is an
F grade prize. It's a large clip-on badge with the straw hat symbol.
A bunch of stuff that I bought from Artnia's gift shop. I got: two Artnia clips
(they gave this to me for free), mini Cactaur plushy (I gave it to a friend),
FF 14-themed mug, FF14-themed tote bag, FF-themed bookmarks,
Tonberry plushy (awwwww, soooooo cute!!! <3), a blank D's Journal from
Bravely Default. I also got two The World Ends With You buttons but it's not shown here.
The stuff I bought from the Capcom Bar. A Monster Hunter 10th Anniversary coaster
(this was free), Gyakuten Meets Orchestra CD (this was discontinued at
most online shops so I was glad it was available here),
a Monster Hunter-themed stamp set.
More stuff that I bought from Animate. "Dreamer" CD single, "Shiokaze no Harmony"
CD single (both from anime Tari Tari), Tari Tari OST, Gyakuten Saiban 5 OST,
Gyakuten Saiban Sound Box (includes music from Gyakuten Saiban 1-3), annnnnnnnd...
Persona 3: Spring of Birth #1 Blu-Ray Limited Edition
(came with that nifty wall scroll to the right).
A closer look at what's inside Persona 3: Spring of Birth #1 Blu-Ray Limited Edition.
From left to right, top to bottom: the Blu-Ray box, some shiny stickers
(I haven't looked at them), Blu-Ray case (also includes a soundtrack CD),
a mini art guide book, some postcards.
This also came with the Persona 3: Spring of Birth #1 Blu-Ray Limited Edition.
Annnnnd... here is what's inside. A metal key, and an Elizabeth key chain thing.
Cost of Swag / Purchases (in Yen) (NOT counting what I gave to friends)
Shibuya 109 (Glavil + pocoapoco): 16200 (15120 + 1080)
Don Quijote (5000 yen PSN card + 3D metallic puzzle): 6213 (5000 + 1213)
Tiny Charm: 150
Gachapon Kaikan: 1600
Meguro Parasitological Museum: 3800
Super Retro Potato-kan: 3888
Disk Union: 7890
J-World swag: 4164
Animate swag #1 (misc pile): 3011
Animate swag #1 (CDs + Persona Blu-Ray): 24006
Hatsune Miku figure (from the crane game): 200 (woot!! Got it on my first try at that specific machine!!)
One Piece campaign (at 7-11): 2360
Artnia gift shop: 9250
Capcom Bar swag: 4599
Grand Total: 107446 yen
Now... in case you say "How could you have declared that much while coming back to Canada?", my answer is this: I had my sister declare the excess. ;) She didn't spend that much on souvenirs so between us we were both under our declaration limit.
And with that I am done my core Japan blogs! Woot! And boo... (ahhh, Japan -- how I miss you!!)
Thank you for reading and sticking with me through my ventures in Japan. I have one more Japan-related blog coming, but I is it more an extra, so it may not be interesting to you. It will be up very soon-ish, since there is not much writing involved.
Thank you again and take care! :)