Japan Day 4

Today we started our day with a visit to the Imperial Palace. It is only open 2 days a year and today wasn’t the day, but, we had a bit of a view. The current emperor is retiring this year at 85 and his son who is 59 is taking over beginning May 1st. An enormous celebration is planned.

Imperial Palace

After this we traveled to the Asakusa district seeing a famous Buddah and then conducted some retail therapy. How clean Japan is!

Our final stop was the Ginza district where the price of a shirt can be 400 USD. Since Ross is my store of choice I politely removed myself journeying a half mile away to the fish market. Chaos is more my style and this certainty was found here. The sounds and smells intrigued as well as the flurry of activity.

Back to the main meeting point I found television station personnel with cameras. This was a solemn day in Japanese history as 8 years earlier a level 9 earthquake and tsunami left 20,000 dead or unaccounted for. A private moment of silence reigned at 3 pm.

Returning to the hotel I prepared for my evening event a traditional Kaiseki Dinner.

Outside Restaurant

Seven of us feasted on raw fish and other delicacies at the dinner. When I signed up for this I had no idea it was something I had seen numerous times in the movies where businessmen dine while kimono adorned gals serve them.

Hallway to our room

We removed our shoes and our waitress quickly took care of them. She was a charming young woman who spoke no English but beguiled us with her grace.

Our waitress

We sat on the floor as our legs dangled in a pit. Our first course was before us in a box.

First course

This course contained fresh, local fish selections of octopus, crab, squid and sweet fish. Our tour guide maneuvered us through the 7 courses.

Course 3 Japanese Black Beef

Interesting enough because of the portion size and timing of the food none of us felt “stuffed,” and fish has no calories anyway, correct? 🙂

Besides the taste the presentation of the items was also exquisitely done. While no business was exchanged all felt like company VIPs during the dinner. Another magical moment traveling the globe.

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