Due to the bad weather, me and my friend decided to go to Tokyo. One option would be the Mount Fuji, but it would not be so pleasant bellow the rain. Catching the train or subway in Japan is a real adventure. The rail system around here, although expensive and very confusing for those who are not accustomed, is very efficient. You will find no shortage of confused tourists (like me) and people from smaller cities (like my friend) in the Tokyo transit system. There are several lines and several companies which makes the process even more confusing for the unprepared. To save ourselves some hassle (and money), we bought the daily pass for about USD 10, which gave us unlimited trips, a bargain if you are going to use the system a lot. At peak hours, there are workers with white gloves from the transportation company that push people into the car. I was surprised when I realized that there were exclusive cars for women, it was a way to avoid male harassment.
Today our schedule was quite eclectic, from department stores to fish markets, we went to:
• Tokyo Tower: near the Ueno line, the tower resembled the Eiffel of Paris. I didn’t make a point of going up, since the weather was bad.
• Ginza: the neighborhood with wide avenue and full of department stores, the first neighborhood to modernize and build buildings in the Western style, being the most expensive piece of Japan. It is where there is the pedestrian crossing that you can cross the avenue diagonally. During the peak business hours this intersection is so full that you can easily lose your friends!
• Tsukiji Fish Market: the largest seafood market in the world. Today due to the holiday, almost all the stalls were closed, but we spent a buck to eat in a conveyor belt sushi restaurant (also called sushi train or rotation sushi), I have tried exotic things like sushi of horse meat, king crab and scallop.
• Akasaka: We visited a temple in Akasaka. Nothing extraordinary! Don’t be confused with the nice one in Asakusa.
• Shinjuku: another neighborhood full of department stores, entertainment and neon lights. Shinjuku station is the busiest in Japan, like the subway station of Praça da Sé in São Paulo, at peak times multiplied by one hundred.
The Sea Day, Ocean Day or Marine Day (海の日, Umi no Hi) was established in 1996 as a national holiday. Since then, every third Monday of July has become a holiday. The date is to celebrate and thank for the blessings of the sea, since the country is entirely dependent on the sea. But no ceremony is held in celebration.