I’m back from Tokyo! As expected, Japan was wonderful. In fact, it exceeded my expectations again Somehow it feels like this trip was a milestone in my life because I travelled by myself for the first time. Haha.
Taking the plane was fun in a way that can only be when you’re a 17 year old all alone
But landing in Tokyo was even better. It felt different from the past times—I’ve always been with my family, but this time landing in my favourite city by myself felt so good. I practically teared
I don’t think I’m overreacting either, since it’s a place I like so much. When you’re finally there, it feels like a great accomplishmentIt was also a nice thing to have gone from 33℃ weather to 18℃. Fall is certainly a fabulous season.
Once I arrived, I took a train to Hakone to meet my father and his colleagues who were there for a work trip
I bought a drink along the way. My first purchase
Long train journeys in Japan are the best because I get to see so much great scenery while listening to music. It’s not an experience I can ever get in my country, so I really enjoyed it.
In between train stops, I saw a giant cake tower with macarons and swiss rolls! I know what I want for my next birthday cake now.
Upon reaching Hakone, my dad and his colleagues and I went straight to Owakudani. It’s popular with tourists because it has smelly volcanic bits with sulphur springs.
The smell was strong enough that you could probably safely pass some gas without anyone mindingThey use the sulphur springs to produce the famous black eggs, and we bought some to eat. They’re just regular eggs with black shells, but inside they were more bouncy than usual.
Everyone had ramen for lunchI don’t remember the exact name of mine, but it had some really stretchy mochi that took me forever to bite off.
And I had black ice cream for a cold dessert! I thought it was black sesame at first but plot twist: it’s black vanilla. Of which I can’t tell the difference between this and normal white vanilla.
After lunch we walked around Hakone for a whileTo be perfectly honest, I didn’t want to go to Hakone at first. I had a fanciful idea of shopping in the main city of Tokyo by myself, and it clearly wasn’t a sensible idea so I had to follow my dad. But I’m infinitely glad I came to Hakone in the end, because it is spectacular in that way only a countryside-ish place could be.
Beautiful! That’s rightHakone is so pleasant, so simple and so storybook-like that it sort of calms you down. There’s a beauty there that you can’t get anywhere elseSomehow you feel like you’re stepping into a Studio Ghibli movie.
If you go to Tokyo, it’s good to take a break from the city and visit Hakone
That’s all about my short stay thereI went back to Tokyo in the evening! We had dinner at a sashimi place—and by we, I mean my dad and all his work partners. So I must have been the only one under 40 then. (that didn’t bode well for conversation)
Dinner was fabulous nonethelessThe chefs chopped up the sashimi right in front of us, so it was pretty interesting to watch them hack up the meat instead of just sitting there. I don’t think I’ve ever eaten so much sashimi in one sitting before, but Japan’s a good place to do itWell, duh.
The dinner lasted pretty long. Considering I’d just gone on a plane journey, multiple train journeys and hikes up the mountain, I was decidedly tired. But as it was, I had to accompany my dad to go socialising with the Japanese colleagues. This was entirely exhausting and awkward, because I had to sit around the adults who were drinking (with my own cup of orange juice) and occasionally fit myself into the small talk.
I don’t know how adults do it
But no matter how much I disliked having to use my juice cup as an oxygen mask around the smoking grown ups, it was really interesting. It felt like I had one foot inside the adult world
Even the plate of Hershey kisses had such a grown up feel.
That’s all that happened in my first day
Writing this post reminded me of how much I loved Japan, and now I miss it all over againSorry it took so long to write this. School has cost me my mental capacity, and even now I feel like I have a wad of cotton wool in my head. There really are a lot of things I wanted to talk about this trip, but I’m not up to it nowSo in the next few posts, I’ll talk about my feelings bit by bit!
For now I’m going to bed.