Japan: Day 3

by mandaceehb

We went to Shinjuku in the morning, which kind of reminds me of Orchard Road in Singapore- full of high end brands and fashionable stores. It was shopping paradise basically, especially since there were cheap and trendy outlets shouting at us to enter and explore. Shinjuku seems to be pumping with a life and energy of its own, perhaps from the busy streets, upbeat people and overall vibrancy and activity of the place. 

We had lunch at this really cool restaurant where we could choose to dine in a private room. The food was reasonably priced and absolutely delicious! I had a set meal which comprised of chilled soba with salty duck sauce, a bowl of sushi rice with cubed sashimi and a fluffy caramel cake for dessert. Yum!

After that, we made our way to Jiyugaoka. Jiyugaoka is a really pretty area that gives me a sort of European vibe. The shops are woody and homely and somehow visually welcoming.:) 

We were looking for this place called La Vita, which is a tiny area nearby designed like Venice. However, we faced some difficulty finding it. We asked a woman along the road how to get there and although she was in the midst of buying a lottery ticket, she actually took out her phone to search for directions and brought us all the way there! I was so touched by her kindness but because I can’t speak Japanese well, I couldn’t express my utmost gratitude. It’s a very warm feeling to have a stranger show you such kindness without expecting anything in return. So I repeated ‘thank you’ in Japanese a few times for everything it was worth.:)

La Vita was smaller than I expected, but equally beautiful. There were a few bicycles parked by the entrance, and once you stand at the front, you can take in the whole place at once. Lovely pastel coloured buildings stand beside each other, occupied by cafes lit up by warm, golden glows. A large clock face is mounted on a building, its face half cast in shadow, telling us that darkness will soon fall. A gondola is covered with a red cloth, bobbing on the water over which a bridge stands. Every part seems picture perfect and beautiful.

As evening fell, we walked on and we arrived at Roppongi to darkness. At Tokyo Tower, we went to the observatory deck at about half its height and looked out to the night view. I saw the Rainbow bridge, Tokyo SkyTree and tons of other buildings I couldn’t identify. We ended the day with a personalised Tokyo Tower coin as a souvenir and a box of Tokyo Banana.:)