After a nap, we left the ryokan in search of food, and immediately found a nice ramen place around the corner. While we waited for our food, we enjoyed exploring the many condiments available on the table. There were pickled garlic cloves with garlic presses!
Ramen came, and we enjoyed our very first meal in Japan! In retrospect, I think we were very fortunate in our first authentic ramen experience. It remains one of the best ones I’ve had, and I’ve now had many bowls of ramen.
After our meal, we went to the worst place in all of Tokyo: Harajuku. If there is a hell-for-Sharon, this place is it. Wall to wall people, everything cheap cutesy crap, teenagers everywhere, teenage girls screaming for patrons to enter their shop in high pitched voices. The noise, the sweet smells, the crowds… I could have skipped it entirely.
The group explored many silly shops and we eventually escaped to a quieter area with many promising shops nearby: small galleries and designers. By this point, however, we were mostly seeking a place to sit and relax, and that wasn’t possible. We ended up in a British pub for a drink before leaving the area for good, via a different route.
That night, we were planning to go to a huge gothic party, a special event for Halloween, so we decided to have a rest, then a meal, then get ready to go out.
We lucked out that the restaurant up the street from our ryokan was a sake place with great food!