Tokyo City Girl

>> Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The skies cast a gray shadow over the city today. Raindrops seem to consistently patter through Tokyo windows. Outside, the Japanese seem to wear even more black but the rain sparkle through their clear umbrellas.

Every corner boasts of a pretty girl. I've lost count of how many perfect Japanese women I've seen, with their clear skin and huge, doll-like eyes. There is not a Tokyo citizen who looks like he's grabbed the first thing in his closet. Everyone looks polished in carefully chosen, meticulously layered clothes.

The famous Shibuya crossing.

Tokyo is pretty much like your Japanese girl: wildly colorful, ineffably polite, delicately dressed, but absolutely fun, and most especially quirky.

It's been a week since I have been immersed in the city of Tokyo and by now I can proudly say I can go around here by myself. The first few days were lucky for me --- we had someone to help us get around. Culture differences pop in every now and then and though I've been a bit intimidated with a city who clings to its language with so much love that there is very little percentage of people who speak English, I am now entwined to its quirky, neon-lighted charms.

1. Keep left. It took me a couple of days to finally stay on the left side of things when going to the subway, as the Manila girl in me kept walking on the right.

2. Everyone wears black. Maybe it's the time of the year, I don't know. When I packed clothes, I brought as little black as possible because when I read various Tokyo blogs, I noticed they wore cream, prints, and truly eccentric pieces. So I did, too! On my second day, a college guy from Singapore tells me he thought I was from the J Pop Girl group AKB48.

3. Men tote bags. And I've found this little tidbit very adorable and interesting. I'm saying this now just in case we forget and get culture shocked in the future.

4. The Japanese are, by far, the politest, in my book. I've always thought the Filipinos were {with our po and opo} but the Japanese have taken over that with their gozaimas and more importantly, their genuine happiness when interacting with you. They never appear bored or sad doing their jobs and despite the language differences, they communicate well with a smile. Always. You know what's nice, too? Japanese shop sellers never harass you.

5. Everywhere you turn is a pretty girl. I've raved about this and I will rave about it again: Japanese Girls are perfect. Their skin glow under the Tokyo sunshine and is never dull. They're fit {must be all the sushi and the walking} and they speak like anime characters. I keep squeeing every corner because lovely girls in skirts, tights and cashmere sweaters are everywhere. Contrary to an old belief, their faces are not thick with makeup {at least not their eyes}, however their lashes ARE thick with mascara, falsies or maybe it's natural. They really are pretty. If anyone is curious, Japanese men are really, really cute, too. And like the pretty girls, they are everywhere, too!

 The Million Yen Cat.

6. Organized. I've never seen a country more organized --- whether buildings, their subways, train systems, lines, EVERYTHING.

7. I've never related more to Scarlett Johansson in Lost in Translation. Have always loved Lost in Translation but until I was immersed in a place where it was hard to find a familiar Filipino face, I couldn't truly grasp its 'dreaming-while-awake' feel until now. It's inevitable to be lonely in Japan, this much I know, especially if you're coming home to your hotel room and will spend numerous hours not talking, only pointing to food and clothes you want.

Sometimes | My Bloody Valentine

 7. Your life changing in front of you and not knowing the moment that changes you forever can both be the same thing. I don't know how that happened, I just know it did.

8. Travel introduces you to a side of you that you thought never existed. And sometimes, it's not always a good thing.

Much love from the city of neon signs and sushi,

6 butterfly kisses:

Dea November 21, 2012 at 8:48 AM  

Aaaaw, looks like you had a great time and learned a lot. :) We bought tickets to Japan way before I got pregnant, our trip was supposed to have been yesterday (your birthday) but di na kami natuloy. Thank for 'taking' me there. Can't wait to go here with my daughter in the future.

PS. That caaaaaat! Ang cute, sobra!!!

Askmewhats November 21, 2012 at 9:38 AM  

Super agree on pretty girls! I can't help but stare at them!!! They look so pretty with false lashes pa parang applied on a daily basis! or was it extensions? I can't tell anymore! hahahahah

I can't wait to go back to Japan, I've loved the city so much I left an extended part of me! Everyone's very polite and I felt so safe in the city!!!! :) Glad you had fun! and Glad you enjoyed your "Lost in Translation" moments!

Tinkerbelle November 22, 2012 at 4:58 AM  

Hi Ms. Tara! I am a consistent reader of your blog :) just wanted to greet you a happy birthday!:)

i work at BGC too and i really want to meet you..:) you just seem so full of knowledge..:) hehe

anyways,keep on inspiring ms tara!! :)

Dang Villanueva November 23, 2012 at 9:35 AM  

Can't wait to hear your stories personally, sis. :) Lovely birthday in Japan!M Loveyah!

Alex November 24, 2012 at 8:01 AM  

I'm so envious! Visiting Japan is definitely in my bucket list. Tell me all about it when we see each other next time! ;)

Oh, and belated happy birthday! :D

Mhean aka MereMakeupManiac November 24, 2012 at 10:47 PM  

Japan is one of my dream destinations too. Your trip and experience sounded wonderful!

And belated happy birthday! I pray that Christ Jesus provide you with divine health and blessings upon your life!

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Cheers, Tara


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