Our main reason for wanting to return to Japan was the people. Over the past couple of weeks we’ve reconnected with quite a few former students and colleagues as well as our wonderful church family. We’ve also had plenty of time to revisit favourite places in and around Tokyo and to explore some new ones. We continue to be amazed at how easily two hicks from rural Alberta manage to navigate the world’s largest city. Even when we get on the wrong train, as we did this morning, we manage to find our way.
We spent much of this afternoon strolling through Asakusa. The district’s big attraction is its Buddhist temple, Senso-ji, but we’d visited it before and have seen enough temples to last a lifetime so we spent our time exploring Nakamise-dori, the shopping street leading up to the temple where everything from junky tourist trinkets to genuine crafts are sold. We also wandered many of the little side streets surrounding it. After awhile, I’d had enough of shops and crowds so after relaxing over coffee at a nearby Starbuck’s, we went for a long stroll along the Sumida River. So relaxing!
As we walked, we had a good view of the newest structure on the Tokyo skyline. When complete, the Tokyo Sky Tree will be 634 metres high; the tallest tower in the world. It’s main purpose will be radio and television broadcasting but it will also house a restaurant and observation tower.