These days, screen time for me has reached an ultimate high. There are so many good films, series and films, did I say that already? And it also doesn’t help that I’m in the midst of transforming my room into an urban jungle-sanctuary, so really… I’m not completely sure I’ll ever step foot outside these four walls again. So lately, I’ve been reflecting on Scarlett Johansson and Bill Murray’s film Lost in Translation. What a great film. The two cross paths in Tokyo and everything seems to normalize within their conflicting lives while spending more time together. The film’s setting makes viewers feel the energetic atmosphere in Tokyo, with all the neon lights, the arcades and everything in between. That being said, here’s my take on Japan’s ultramodern capital.
The city is enormous. I mean, even the locals are asking for directions all the time. Our first evening as we arrived to Tokyo from Kyoto, the cab driver dropped my brother and I off in an alleyway, saying something along the lines that our hostel was just steps away. Ok — that’s wonderful news. Here sir, please take my yen. As we walked up and down the alleyway, there was no sign of Book & Bed Hostel and Google Maps had showed us being thirty minutes away. Having to navigate at night with our luggages to find our accommodation wasn’t the most pleasant, but we eventually made it, checked into a trendy, dim-lit hostel around midnight and called it a night. Imagine sleeping behind bookshelves, where one can just grab any book, flip through it and place it back — it’s a bookworm’s dream! Books spanned the hallways in a neat configuration and made for great ceiling decor.
Besides experiencing Shibuya Crossing about ten times (prime people watching spot) and indulging in the must-try conveyor belt sushi near Ikebukuro, the two most memorable events were attending the teamLab Borderless exhibition and go-karting around Tokyo in a onesie with MariCAR. The digital experience is so immersive, it really draws you into an entire new world. Three hours in, and we wanted more. And if you have a passion for speed, or want to feel like a celebrity for an evening — MariCAR is the tour you’ll want to sign up for. Yes, you will be driving on Rainbow Bridge at over 70 km/hr with trucks honking at you. It’s awesome.
I am so fascinated by Japan’s way of living. The level of structure is set so that everyone is to abide by the rules. Sidewalks are marked so you know which side to walk on, there are designated smoking areas so you can’t just toss a cigarette butt out anywhere you like. Everybody uses the same clear umbrella so that on rainy days, you can actually see where you’re walking. The trip, short and sweet. Until next time, Tokyo — Sayonara.