Tokyo - Meiji Shrine, Shibuya and delicious ice-cream.
So my excellent partner encouraged me to get out and have some time to myself so I could feel like I was really traveling (without the pressure of having to make sure the fam bam was in check an everyone was fed etc etc), so I went on one of the day I had planned for us in Tokyo, sans partner and child. It was just an area exploration really and heres what I got up to!
I started at Meiji Shrine, which was lovely and peaceful. Walking through the forest leading up to the shrine (from the north gate I think) was amazing and something I wouldn't expect to experience in Tokyo. SO MUCH GREEN. It was heavenly, and definitely needed and welcomed!!!
As I was wandering out of the shrine, I came across Meiji Jingu's Inner Garden and took a bit of time to explore and soak of some natural surroundings. It was 500 Yen to enter, and worth it for that extra little bit of nature away from the crowds.
After rejuvenating in natural beauty, I literally went to the opposite end of the spectrum and landed in the concrete jungle that is Shibuya.
I wanted to do the famous scramble in Shibuya, but it was early and not a huge amount of scramble going on.... But it was awesome to be in a place I had read/watched so much about and it made it all feel so real.
As it was early, I did what anyone would do and head straight for Don Quixote Mega Store. IT WAS AMAING. I got a bunch of stuff, lots of Totoro stuff for the kiddo as well as aaaaaaall of the stickers (apparently it wasn't until I came to Japan that I realised just how much I love stickers....), colouring book for the kid and some other bits and bobs.
By the time I resurfaced, Shibuya 109 was open and I wanted to head to the 7th floor to do some serious solo Purikura in this excellent facility!
For those of you who don't know what Purikura is, refer to exhibit A below. You take silly photos of yourself and the machine makes you all Kawaii (Japanse word for cute) and then you decorate it. (Also may I add, it wasn't in English so I didn't know how to delete any of the photos, so you get me in all my 'eyes half closed' glory too!)
Then I ate excellent ramen and went to a few more stores.
By this time I was going to head to Harajuku but once I emerged from my little bubble, everywhere was packed and I started feeling overwhelmed and like it was all a bit too much. I knew Harajuku would have been full to the brim also and I just didn't feel like I was in the best headspace to commit to the crowds! So, Harajuku is for the next trip!
Instead, I met up with Alasdair and our sleeping child and had an AMAZING ice-cream!
Followed by finding a random place for some snacks and beers. Our hour-long 'kid is sleeping in the pram' time has been awesome and we look forward to it every day.
We made our way home and watched Oties new favourite Japanese cartoon Anpanman (it's in Japanese but he still follows the stories and the characters are whack an super fun!)
That was our day 4!