Japan Customs Warnings

Japan Customs Warnings
The  departure area at Narita airport has a nice display of contraband.  Genuine and counterfeit articles are displayed, prohibited items are also displayed.

The Real Hachiko 45

The Real Hachiko
Many people have seen the statue of Hachiko in Shibuya.  What many people don’t know is that the real Hachiko is in the National Science Museum in Ueno. 

JR Sakura Lounge Shower at Narita

JR Sakura Lounge Shower at Narita
The Sakura Lounge at Narita is quite vast and well-stocked.  They have first-class shower facilities which are available on a first-come-first-served basis.  If I’m not flying business class I use the day room facilities to take a shower prior to boarding but the facilities in the Sakura Lounge are second-to-none.

Amazing Stair Climbing Dolly 1

Amazing Stair Climbing Dolly
I was outside of Otsuki Station and saw one of the most interesting carrying devices I’ve ever seen anywhere.  This dolly can climb up and down stairs with large amounts of payload.  It certainly beats the heck out of hauling these boxes up and down stairs the old-fashioned way.

Mt. Fuji Pictures at 270 km/h

Mt. Fuji Pictures at 270 km/h
I was heading to Osaka in January 2009 on a beautiful clear day and took these pictures of Mt. Fuji.  It was truly fortunate to be traveling on such a clear day.

300 km/h Shinkansen Ride

300 km/h Shinkansen Ride
I shot a picture of my GPS while going from Hiroshima to Tokyo.     But, looking closer zoomed in, check out the maximum speed of 300 km/h.  

Fukushima Ekiben

Fukushima Ekiben
I was returning from Aizu-Wakamatsu and picked up an ekiben meal on my way back to Tokyo.  There were quite a few choices but this one caught my fancy because of the salmon flakes on the rice.

Takkyubin (Door-to-Door Courier Service) 2

Takkyubin (Door-to-Door Courier Service)
Everyone talks about using takkyubin and luggage forwarding.  It’s pretty straightforward to do this at the airport counter or from a hotel when the bell desk takes care of it for you, but most non-Japanese speaking people are probably intimidated by walking into a Yamato (Kuro-Neko/Black-Cat) depot with suitcases to be forwarded to your next ...

2009 Kitajima Shoten Visit

2009 Kitajima Shoten Visit
I visited 4-time Olympic gold medal winner Kitajima Kousuke’s family shop in Nishi-Nippori one rainy day in January 2009 to try the now famous menchi-katsu.  I met his father and mother at the shop.  They were very gracious in allowing me to take pictures of them and their shop and were really impressed that I ...

Zojirushi I-Pot 2

Zojirushi I-Pot
One very cool device “only in Japan” is the I-Pot made by Zojirushi.  A few years back, my wife and I bought one for my mother-in-law after she became a widow and began living alone.  Her I-Pot was such a hit with her that she took over the payments from us (avoiding currency exchange problems, ...