ferocious beanie

25 10 2009
animal beanie

animal beanie

Grrr! It’s an animal beanie.






21 10 2009

Ossan, Kayoubi (Tuesday)

Is is ska, or rock? ska desu ka, rocku desu ka?

Vegan doughnuts in Tokyo

19 10 2009

How to find vegan doughnuts in Tokyo Station:

For us, the easiest way to get to New York Doughnut Plant is to enter into the train station via the ticket machines on the Yaesu Central Gate. Walk straight until you see the Information Centre on your right.

Turn left between platform 8 and 9.

Go past the Dila Tokyo (Media Court) on the right, then turn into the small sweets arcade on the right. Go around the corner (following the arcade) and New York Doughnut Plant is on your right. It is right next to the stairs going up to platform 6.

If you are already in the station, head for the South Passage and look for the shop between the stairs for platforms 7 and 6.

Enjoy awesome egg free, soy milk doughnuts. Be sure to go early or they may be sold out later in the day.

doughnutmapRight-click and View Image to see the whole map of Tokyo station and directions to the doughnut shop.

Tokyo VegFood Festa

18 10 2009

We started off the Tokyo VegFood Festa for 2009 at Tokyo station. The New York Doughnut Plant didn’t have the same vegan soymilk donut we had first tried. Instead they had 2 totally awesome new flavours – pumpkin and rose flavours. Breakfast thus completed we went to Yoyogi Park for the actual VegFood Festa.

There were a large number of stalls, but not as well placed as the Kyoto festival (which was in a more open space with grassed spaces to sit, opposed to a long narrow street filled with stalls on either side). However, the entire festival was advertised as veing vegan so we could eat whatever we wanted.

We met-up with some other folks from Vegan Meet-ups and slowly worked our way through the food that was on offer.

Then we had dinner at Pure Cafe, which was actually classified as a late lunch on their menu. It was okay, but the desserts were really good.

Pachinko Madness

15 10 2009

Sports Day

12 10 2009

Using the Rice Polishing Machine

10 10 2009

The beautiful Maya-chan gave us some husked but unpolished rice. We took it to the public rice polishing machine, about 5 mins walk from our house alongside the highway heading up to school.

The machine looks halfway between a coin-operated laundry and a vending machine. We followed the steps and polished our rice. We did two batches – one batch on the least polished setting, and one batch on the most white polished white rice setting.


Mt Fuji by sunset

8 10 2009

For the first time since we’ve been here we saw Mt Fuji across the bay. A typhoon had just passed so the sky was clear.

Mt Fuji in the distance.

Mt Fuji in the distance.

Mt Fuji at sunset.

Mt Fuji at sunset.

Kimono and Kaimono

7 10 2009

The need for sleep (especially after the overnight bus ride) overtook us so our first outing was for brunch at noon. We went to Cafe Proverbs 15:17 as we had enjoyed it so much last time we went. There seasonal menu had changed for autumn so there were new dishes to choose from. We feasted on the tempeh burger XD and teriyaki tofu set. Then we had the fig tart with tofu cream and cinnamon for dessert.

We caught the bus to the Nishijin Textile Center and watched the last few minutes of a kimono fashion show. However, there was a bus load of Chinese? tourists with all their cameras out so it was difficult to see. After the show the tour-group raced upstairs, tore the shop to pieces and then ran out the their buses again. We looked around at the silk kimono fabrics and watched people working the looms.

Although it was raining we next went for a walk along the Philosophers Path. From below Ginkakuji we wandered along the river, doing some shopping along the way for omiyage (chestnut yatsuhashi, a bamboo water gun, a wooden doll) and followed the path all the way to Nanzenji where we got on a bus back to where Atsu lives.

After dinner we went to the station near where our overnight bus was departing and found a Karaoke place. We sang songs until it was almost time for our bus to leave. Our bus was a ‘relax’ bus so we had these space-age seats. They tilted back 140 degrees, had extra padding around the sides and head, a little canopy to pull over your head when sleeping and long leg/foot rests. See the futurist seats here . We slept much better on the bus home, and then caught the express bus from Tokyo to Kisarazu where it was still raining, just as we left it.

The distant future, the year 2000, futuristic space seats on overnight buses - the canopy you can pull over your head to sleep well on the bus.

Meeting the Vikings in Kyoto

5 10 2009

One of the temples/shrines that we hadn’t visited yet was Sanjusangen-do. While not a big complex, the one big wooden building houses 1001 statues of Kannon, each with 42 arms (which each save 25 worlds and somehow that adds up to saving 1000 worlds each). There are 500 statues in 10 rows either side of a larger central Kannon. At the front are 28 life-size statues of guardian deities e.g. thunder god, wind god etc. The kannon, made in the 12th century, were carved from wood and coated with gold leaf.

Unfortunately, photos were prohibited inside the building. However, there are heaps of photos on the internet so someone(s) obviously took photos anyway…

We were feeling hungry so decided to go to viking, which is a buffet in Japanese. We went to Obanzai and enjoyed fake meats, potato croquettes, salads, rice etc. Most of the food offered was vegan. While we were eating we met the director of the movie ‘The Cove’. He was in Kyoto promoting the movie, then heading to Tokyo for the film festival where ‘The Cove’ is being shown.. We also met the 2 main people behind the ‘Vegan Society of Japan’. After a long lunch-time chat we went with them to Nishikidori Markets and to Mumokuteki that has vegan ice cream and desserts. The icecream was totally delicious, as was the cheesecake we had. We wandered around the markets, got some yaki-tofu for dinner then headed our own way back to Atsu’s. We had BBQ for dinner and skyped his younger sister so Benno could practice his Japanese.