One Sweet World

Not so important posts about a married couple living in Baltimore.

Location: Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Monday, January 17, 2011

Japan/Vancouver - October 16th

Today was Saturday and our last day in Tokyo. Our flight was scheduled to leave at 4:00 that afternoon, but flying out of Narita takes a good hour to get there so we had to leave Tokyo Station around 1:00 PM. That left us with just the morning to tour around. We decided to walk over to the Imperial Palace grounds. We figured we have an hour or two to walk around. But, we didn't realize how hard it is to actually walk through/around Tokyo Station. It looks so small and close on the map but it took us a good hour to walk over there leaving us only 30 or so minutes to walk around and see the sites outside of the palace. So we spent most of our final morning doing lots of walking. We started our journey to Vancouver at Tokyo Station with catching the train to the airport and then our flight to Vancouver via San Francisco.

Arriving in Vancouver, we took the train into the city. To the left is the view from the train! Once we got to the hotel we needed to drop off some laundry. But we had more important things to do, like eat! Now commences the 3 dinners we had our first night in Vancouver. First up, we shared a lamb wrap at Donair King. Then it was off to Rodney's Oyster House after a walk through the Yaletown neighborhood. We got there early enough to catch the oyster happy hour so that made us happy campers!

View of the Oyster bar from our table. Had fresh oysters as our happy hour appetizer. After we had a bit to eat we continued to walk through the Yaletown neighborhood and decided we wanted to try some of the beers at the Yaletown Brewery. Once inside though, the menu looked pretty good so we decided to share a pizza....meal #3!

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Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Japan - October 15th

Woke up today at the ungodly hour of 3:30 AM. Why you ask? So we can see the tuna auction at the Tsukiji Fish Market. They only let in a limited number of people each day and we didn't want to miss out! The tour starts at 5:30 AM but you have to start getting in line an hour before hand and get a ticket. Then you wait for your tour to start and the auction to begin. I've never seen a whole tuna before but they're pretty big fish! We were brought into the auction room and got to watch as the buyers inspected the fish and took notes. Once the auction started each fish was auctioned off in a matter of seconds! Everything went by so fast. Once the auction was done another person came through and marked each fish with the buyer's name. Overall, a pretty cool hour spent at the auction but then we had to navigate a way out of the market past all the moving carts, bicycles, trucks and people. It's quite a site! since we were up so early we were hungry so we got in line at 6AM for a sushi place in the market. We were finally seated at 7:15! Crazy wait for breakfast but we got some delicious fish! And yes, eating raw fish that early in the morning is delicious. By 8:00 AM if felt like we put in a full day of touring already so we headed back to the hotel and took a short nap. Woke up in time to get on the subway and head out to the Asakusa neighborhood to walk around the outdoor shops and the temple that was there. Too bad a lot of other folks thought the same thing! The whole neighborhood felt crowded and we ran into the most tourists in this area. We were ready to leave the area but got some noodles for lunch before finding our way back to the hotel on the subway.
Back at the hotel we freshened up for our nice dinner out with Dave & Eurie at Kyubei. This sushi restaurant is one of the best in the city and is frequented by celebrities (apparently).
Everyone sits at a sushi bar and is served personally by the sushi chef. Each chef only prepares food for 6 people so the setting is very intimate. It's amazing to watch the sushi chef prepare each piece of fish and rice while you watch. About halfway through our meal, we were greeted by the owner of the restaurant himself, Mr. Kyubei! The sushi chef was gracious enough to take our photo. Overall, a fantastic meal that will forever change how we eat and think of sushi. I'm sure this meal won't be repeated any time soon!
After dinner, we decided to get a drink and walk around the Ginza neighborhood. What we didn't realize was that it was so expensive to drink in Tokyo! Beers and cocktails were no cheaper than $20 on this Friday night. We ended the night with a lot less money, but with great memories of a whirlwind day in Tokyo!

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New Year's Resolutions

Well, not so much resolutions as a list of things I'd like to do this year and in no particular order.

1. Re-read a book from high school. You know, one of those books you thought was boring but is probably awesome now.

2. Paint a room. Any room, pick a room, just get it done!

3. Go to a concert and see a band i've never seen before.

4. Learn more Korean. I've been slacking on this lately.

5. Update this blog more often!

Ok, I think 5 is a good number to start with. I'll have to post an update in a few months to see how I'm doing!