Saturday, 21 April 2012

Tokyo and Kobe

This April, I spent the best part of three weeks in Japan. I travelled all over the country by train and ferry, eventually sailing on no less than 31 different ships and so, on Wednesday last week, when I returned home, I was faced with the task of downloading my camera memory cards, containing around 15,000 images. Anyway, here are a selection from the first couple of days of the trip, spent in Tokyo and Kobe:

Safety notice on the train from Narita Airport:

Don't let your panda get stuck in the doors:

 Downtown Tokyo in pissing rain:

On a commuter train at rush hour; fortunately, I stood head and shoulders above nearly everyone else, so while my lower three-quarters were packed in tightly, my top quarter was in air conditioned splendour above the melee:

Tokyo commuter lines map - where to begin?

 Down at the waterfront:

Tokyo by night:

 A wax model of German cuisine:

 My dinner - mmmmm!

 The morning after:


Shinkansen entrance:

Luncheon options for the Shinkansen, again exquisitely modelled in wax:

Onboard a Shinkansen:

Luncheon bento box:

Whizzing past Mount Fuji, en route to Kobe:

At the end of the journey, all the seats get turned around so that everyone faces the direction of travel:

 Shinkansen at Shin-Kobe station:

 Downtown Kobe:

Kobe Art Deco:

 The harbour front:

 Earthquake memorial - Mother Nature does deconstructivism:

A car boot sale - irresistible:

 Things you may not do in Kobe:

Locally-built Maersk freighter and Kansai Kisen ferry models in the Maritime Museum:

 Kawasaki Good Times World - bliss was it:

'Good morning, this is a Sakura Super-Express bound for...'

Model railway with cab-cam so that you can see the driver's eye view of your own model train:

Kawasaki robot which eats noodles - their best ever invention, I think:

 Some Kobe signs:

Luncheon in a restaurant where you had to place your food order at a machine - with signs only in Japanese. Oh, calamity!

 Luncheon as delivered, looking reasonably similar to its depiction in the picture (two images up):

Striated flea market and junk shops beneath the railway arches - this proved a rich source of vintage shipping photographs, launch brochures etc:

Some psychedelic murals:

Kobe Port Tower:

Kobe by night:

The dinner venue:

More to follow soon - watch out!

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