Wednesday, May 31, 2006

You having?

After a restless night of sleep, which resulted in about 2 hours of sleep, I set out on the city at around 5am. Thanks for keeping me company Xtina. It was much easier to get around in the daylight. I am staying in a pretty cool area of the city between Ueno and Asakusa. Its more of a residential area, so I made my way down to the Tokyo Central Business District for the day. The subways and trains are suprisingly easy to use and its crazy how packed they can be, but maintain total silence and order. A few observations: japanese people are really polite, they text message more than Batty texts Becky and Rick combined, and they can sleep anywhere (standing on escalators, waiting for the subway, at lunch tables). Being that I was up so early, many of the museums and whatnot where not yet open, so I just covered alot of ground and saw alot of the city from the street. The architecture is really progressive, it seems like its built with intentions of tearing it down only a few years later. This is in direct contrast to the temples in the parks...they have been around for hundreds of years. Its not nearly as expensive here as I thought it would be, I had a really good sushi lunch for like $7. It was 14 delicious nigiri pieces, the waiter giggled as I ate them in record speed. Thats like a $70 dinner in MN. Hmmm...Hows about I caption some of my pics from the day...

My hood

Temple at Shinobazu Pond

Strange Apartments

Imperial Palace...they've got that on lockdown (not open to public)

Tokyo International Forum (its not the Foshay Tower, but it'll do)

Marunouchi Building - a brand new building in which people can do everything they need (live, work, hospital, eat...etc. etc.)

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Tokyo - HOLY SH#@!T

Well, I am 7,500 miles from home at this point and all nervousness is gone. I am completely overwhelmed by the city. I have only been off the plane for a few hours and am completely exhausted, but the part of the city I am in is great. It's really confusing, because there isn't english on any of the signs for stores and food...but I am sure I'll figure it out. I guess on the plane ride over, I had convinced myself that Tokyo wouldn't be much different than NYC, but this place makes NYC look like Eden Prairie. I need some rest.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

The road to LA

I made it to LA, 2000 miles in 3 days. I went a little crazy with all of the driving over the last couple days. The more miles between me and MN, the less nervous I was about the trip. With the windows down and shirt off (chapin style), I made it across the West. The scenery between Denver and Nevada was amazing. I need to spend some more time at the Utah parks. Unfortunately, there were no run-ins with mormons. Well, I am going to crash at my friend's place for the night and off to Tokyo in the morning.

Best sign along the way:
Correctional Facility do not stop for hitchhikers

Best country song lyric:
It ain't home til you take the wheels off

Friday, May 26, 2006

Nearly forgot the Lake Minnetonka to Minnehaha Falls Urban Canoe Adventure.

Well, so far my time off has been enjoyable: biking, windsurfing, skateboarding, fly fishing, walleye fishing, pontooning, etc etc. here are some pics:

The idea is to post some pics while I am on my trip. Currently, I am sitting in a Motel 6 in the middle of Nebraska due to a thunder/dirt storm that forced me to head in for the night. Unfortunately, I had some "high octane" coffee at a truck stop and can't sleep. I love pulling the Golf into the big truck stops, it never fails that a big rig driver stops by to ask questions about the VW. Also, I've been able to make the whole trip on Biodiesel, so thats kinda nice.