Monday, March 14, 2016

Two Days in Shibuya

I finally went outside Chiba this winter. Practically banned long distance travel because winter is so uninspiring that all I wanted to do was just lounge and eat while keeping myself updated with the outside world via internet.
I was in Shibuya for the weekend out of necessity. If not for that specific reason, I would still see myself around Chiba or in the house.
But anyway, this picture of a sign was taken at the subway platform in Nagatacho station which means that train cars stopping at these platforms (at least two cars) are reserved for women only. Mind you, this is not common here. Only on specific stations but as to reasons why it was not mandatory to all stations is yet unknown to me. Let's face it, there are men gropers around so my guess is that, Nagatacho has the most reported cases that led to this regulation.
Hachiko statue is located just across Shibuya Station's Hachiko guchi (exit), a special name as most exits are named by numbers and not far from the famous Shibuya Crossing. This is often packed with tourists so if one wishes for a selfie with it, better take the queue.
I wouldn't miss taking a seat overlooking Shibuya crossing from Starbucks. Shallow, I know, but I have to say Starbucks is quite lucky to have gotten this very spot. Actually, the building is mostly occupied by Tsutaya (a famous DVD, CD and media store), Starbucks is their partner and took a tiny space that allows its patrons to enjoy the sight of maddening crowd down there.
Day 2. Sunday and as expected, the crowd is crazy. The good thing about crowds here though is that they respect space. Never did I get pushed or shoved in the process of myself getting through. Even on trains, they respect space, they even apologize at the slightest unintentional offense. 
These types of advertisements that partly covers a huge portion of a building's facade are very common on old buildings. Shibuya being an old town with many rising modern buildings void of tacky billboards, are still home to old-school buildings. One can just tell its age based on how low the ceiling, narrow stairs and style of the interior. But i love it because it serves as a reminder of this town's rich history.
Shibuya is really far from where I reside. It takes around more than an hour for travel and three (3) train hops to get there. 
Just before my appointment, I went inside this non-mainstream cafe, 'Sunday Coffee'. The Hawaiian vibe and reggae music were relaxing which reminds of the beach. Take me to the beach, please.
Two Notes to self: (1) Buy a reggae CD. It's an effective mood changer. (2) Give indie cafes a chance. I'll make it a point to navigate Tokyo for these hidden gems.
I wonder how much will it take to set up a business this small. I have side dreams of owning an indie coffee shop in Cebu just to give commercial coffeeshops some competition. 
Cost: 350 JPY. Same price range at maintream coffeeshops.
Lastly, a meal that left me full to close my Shibuya adventure. Tandoori chicken, fried potatoes, tuna & tomato sandwich toast with salad on the side.  This was at Hands Cafe, located inside Tokyu Hands Shibuya. I happened to Google map my way there to buy stuff to support my artistic pursuits. Will blog the details of my arts and how far I have improved, if any.

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