Matt and I woke up late again on Tuesday, giving Dick a little time to recover from an early aikido training before heading out around noon.
Our first stop was back in Akihabara, the same store, where Matt had researched what he felt I needed to own, a new mirrorless (vs SLR) Olympus camera. I went straight to the department and got some help from the excellent clerk. It was a pretty quick purchase, all things considered.
Next up: as quickly as possible to Sensō-ji Temple, but first lunch in the area of Nakamise shopping street. We wandered up and down and had ramen at a small friendly stand in a nearby arcade. It wasn’t as good as either of the ramens I’d previously enjoyed, but it wasn’t bad either.
Afterwards, we walked over to the shrine. I had read about the practice of drawing omikuji, a sort of fortune, and that there were English versions at this and a few other temples (credit due: Rob of TheRealJapan blog – thanks, and thanks to Steve for introducing us!). I wanted to try it. In the end, we all did. Dick and I got good fortune, but Matt’s was a little bit less good, so he tied it up to a stand where one does that sort of thing.
I very much like the practice of putting clothes on statues. These ones all had bibs.
We enjoyed the temple for a while, then decided it was time to move on. Dick’s morning had started too early, so he left for the ryokan and a rest while Matt and I went to find a shopping place I’d heard about: Aki-Oka, a low industrial building with many small shops of artisans and hand-crafted goods, as well as the odd goofy cartoon character.
After a long while there, we also needed a rest, so we headed for the nearest station. On the way, we passed a wonderland grocery store that just begged exploration as well.
Sake was a theme for our entire trip. This one was a special sake for autumn.
And these were small plush mushrooms. Many varieties!
Eventually we got back to the ryokan, rested for a while, and met up with the group for… hot pot and all-you-can eat!
We tried to find a drinking establishment after dinner, but did not really succeed, since it had gotten too late. An English pub let us in for their last 30 minutes of being open. We were all back at the ryokan and in bed by 01:00 or maybe 02:00. If this seems awfully late, please remember: we were extremely jet lagged still and operating on tourist time.