WT2010 – JAPAN – Day 12 – Sangenjaya & Asakusa

Posted in Uncategorized by jukeboxparables on March 21, 2010

WT2010 – JAPAN
Day 12 – Sangenjaya & Asakusa
[On the iPOD] Gang Of Four / The Ramones

It’s a real fight to wakeup and greet the day, eventually managed to around 12noon. I was considering checking out Asakusa, because with only 4days left I still want to be going places I havent been yet. After lunch in Sanganjaya and some quick photo ops of the big highway that runs through it (Theres a big elevated freeway that runs right through the suburb but somehow the areas and shops underneath are still cool to hang near)

I decided to try something new and hop on the Ginza line which takes you to the complete opposite end of Tokyo, Asakusa is the last stop and it takes about 30minutes. I actually fell asleep on the train, that’s the downside of trying to combine big nights with site-seeing you have to make up the time somewhere. Still though I push on.

Asakusa (pronounced A-SAK-SA) is essentially full of tourists. The main attraction is the Temple area a few minutes walk from the station. It’s more like a temple district actually. Market stalls are setup selling all different types of food to the hungry tourists. I actually caved at an odd looking desert; A banana dipped in ice-topping topped with sprinkles and served on a stick. Radness.

The Temple area (at least according to lonely planet) is both Shinto and Buddhist and is a coming together of the two “non-religions”. The place was packed and I wandered on through the market stalls to the backstreet markets which were selling kitch-tourist-esque items. When your surrounded by tourists you feel even more like a tourist and I’m not aiming for that.

I decided to try KFC for a quick snack, just for comparisons sake. The serving portions are so small here. I guess its like the jump from Australia to America. Large chips here are literally a small size (or maybe even less) than you’d find in Australia, I can’t imagine an Americans reaction to this. I find Japan does their own thing much better (like MOS Burger) rather than the chains that try and deliver westernized food.

Asakusa has a strange vibe. Theres the Temple area, the kitch tourist vibe, older houses and dingy small lane markets mixed with modern main strips with big restaurants with big queues. The bridge across the river breaks it all up and leads to some small river-side modern parked area but that’s about it really.

A cool site is the Asahi building (a beer company in Japan) the building is literally built to look like a beer, it has a conventional design but is ‘gold’ like a glass of biru and has a ‘frothy’ jagged shape window design right up top, don’t ask me what on earth the odd peanut shaped thing next to the building is though.

I didn’t have time nor energy to visit any other points of Interest in the town, though I did stay to get some night snaps of the temple area and try some delicious Soba noodles for the first time! I was pretty tired so decided to head back to my hotel.

Somehow after a coffee and a shower I realised there was a local Indie club within walking distance, I mustered the energy and headed out. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; DJ’s here are just plain weird. Most of the music I’ve come across has been always Interesting; Mostly odd mixes of electro with odd post-punk and garage music. Normally this would sound like a good thing; but when you see a club advertised as a certain thing, your expecting it I suppose. Though DJ’s here do mix live with vinyl, so; much respect there. I was at a place called “Web” whose Indie night “Big Love” attracted a mixed crowd, cheap entry with a free drink. But again odd shoe-gaze-spaced out electro played way too loud didn’t seem to get the people in there too enthused about the dance-floor.

I suppose I should be embracing how they do things here, but the locals didn’t seem too interested either. I’ve now been to four indie clubs none of which has played as advertised. Funny, but it’s a different experience!

It’s the long-weekend here with a holiday on Monday so Sunday night means another big night. My head is going to hurt come leaving Japan, but heck the way I look at it I can sleep on the plane.

Some photos;




One Response

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  1. vixstar1314 said, on March 27, 2010 at 1:54 pm

    very interesting blog, I’m going japan soon and your post has been very insightful

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