We've been in Tokyo for a few days and are having a great time exploring the city and its culture. It is hot and humid, but we're getting acclimated to it. For such a large city, Tokyo is strangely quiet, especially at night. Very few sirens and no honking horns, loud trucks, or blaring radios. One notable exception is the cicadas in the parks. While walking through the park adjacent to the museums we visited, their sound was overwhelming. It was incredible to imagine such a noise coming from mere insects, until Yoko picked up a specimen and showed us just how large they are!
We began today before dawn, piling into taxis (the trains weren't running yet) at 4:15 am for a trip to Tsukiji fish market, where we waited in line for a chance to be among the lucky few allowed to watch the tuna auctions. It was absolutely fascinating....and smelly. Who would have guessed that Japanese auctioneers talk every bit as fast as American auctioneers? We were told that a single fish can cost $15,000 to $30,000 dollars. After the fish market, we took midmorning naps at the hotel and then ventured back out to explore the Harajuku neighborhood, a prime shopping district for the young cosplay fans. Since the dollar is so weak against the yen these days, we didn't buy too much, which is probably good, since we have to pack our luggage tonight and move. Tomorrow, we ride the Shinkansen train to Kyoto, watching the countryside whip by at 130 mph.
18,824 steps measured by my pedometer today - whew!