This is the guide for having fun in Tokyo

by cicerone-e
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This English version takes a rest because DJ Punch is busy for job change.
# by cicerone-e | 2005-08-10 13:32 | other



cicerone よりミュージックバトンが来ましたので、私も・・・ふつつかながら参加させていただきます。


* 今パソコンに入ってる音楽ファイルの容量


* 最後に買ったCD


岡村ちゃんは高1の時渋谷のパルコPart2で「靖幸結婚して!!」と叫びながらスズ振ってたときもありました。そして今や太ってパパイヤ鈴木みたいになってる岡村ちゃんもStill 愛しいです。

* 今聴いている曲

d0020794_171391.gifCrystal Kay:NATURAL
   - World Premire Album -


* よく聴く曲、または自分にとって特に思い入れのある5曲




3.プリンス:One Nite Alone...Live!




# by cicerone-e | 2005-06-27 17:19 | other

Punch is shopping!!


Which do you like?
# by cicerone-e | 2005-06-27 16:06 | other

-How to cook Monja-

Those of you who are living in Tokyo might know what Monja is like, and how to cook it. But when I take my friends came from other prefecture to Monja place, they often say, "Is this fully cooked??", or " It doesn't really look good !" But actually, this is fully cooked and you are ready to eat... So
let me explain how to cook Monja.
1)Here is the Monja. After hot plate is heated, oil it lightly.
2)Stir fry all the ingredients. But leave the liquid in the bowl.
3)After vegetables are wilted, create a "bank" to make a hole the middle.
4)Mix well the liquid, and pour it into the hole slowly
5)Wait for a while, and after it is cooked and thickened, mix up
6)Now you are ready to eat! Use small spatula to eat. Scrape the scorched part, it also tastes good!

Others (Anzu-Maki)
Anzu Maki (Apricot compote roll) is like a Japanese style crepe. Make a large piece of crepe and put apricots in the middle and roll it up. After you cut it in bite size pieces, put some syrup on the top. This is the standard way to cook, but I like smaller piece of Anzu Maki, so I usually make a few small piece of Anzu Maki.
1)Take some crepe mixture, and spread it out on hot plate with the back of a spoon
2)Put some apricot compotes in the middle after crepe is cooked.
3)Roll it up and put some syrup on the top. Even if you are already full,
I am sure your stomach has a room for desert!! !
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-20 11:02 | other
As you go southwest from Tsukuda Jima, you will see the "Monja" town Tsukishima.
"Nishinaka-dori Shotengai" is the main street of Monja town, and from 1st street to the 4th street, there are long lines of Monja restaurants on both sides of the street.
After a long time since I have visited Tsukishima last time, there was a huge condominium built in the 1st street.... The landscape of Tsukishima has changed a lot, but in the 1st floor of the huge condominium, there was a central office of tsukishima Monja Association, so that Monja is still kicking and alive in this area..

Nishinaka-Dori Shotengai is surely one of the fun place to visit, but the most attractive part of Tsukishima is narrow pathways extended from main street. The pathway has a width only enough for one person to get through, and it is filled with old down town atmosphere. The narrow pathway arouse curiosity of person like me, who loves small path because it excites me about where this pathway is taking me to, and what is up there.

It is always very hard to choose which Monja restraint I should go, because there are so many of them. Should I select one favorite restaurant and go there all the time? or should I try every single one of them??
This time, I went the Monja restaurant called "Kataoka" located behind the main street. After you enjoy Monja (from 550 yen), please try Anzu Maki (Apricot compote roll) Also this restaurant has a unique menu called "Anko maki and chou ice?" (Red bean roll with ice cream puff) which was registered to utility design! But I recommend you to have sweet and sour Anzu Maki, it tastes so good!! Or you can also try simple Anko Maki (Red bean roll)
Kaisen Monja Kataoka
address: 1-25-9 Tsukishima, Chuo-ku
access: 3 min walk from Tokyo Metro Yurakucho line, Tsukishima Station,
Exit # 5
open: 5PM-10PM(Weekday)、12AM-10PM (Weekend and holidays)
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-20 10:35 | walking
There is Tsukiji-Shijo (Tsukiji fish market) on the right of Hamarikyu. You can purchase fresh fish there even if you are not wholesaler. It is almost universal that there is always a good place to eat around market.
Tsukiji Shijo becomes very quiet after the wholesale trade ends at noon time. If you would like to see lively market, you should go there in the morning !

As you pass the market, you will see an old-Indian style temple, Tsukiji-Honganji. Next to the Tsukiji Honganji is Tsukijigawa Koen (park). This place used to be a river, but later the park was created out of reclaimed land. That is why there are many place-name with "Hashi"(bridge) around this area. I can not believe both Tsukiji and Ginza used to be an island!. If I have a time machine, I want to see the city of river - Edo(Tokyo). But it was only 40 years ago since these area were redeemed.

When you head to Sumida River from Tsukijigawa Koen, you will see Tsukudabashi(bridge) on your left with the Seiroka Saint Lukes Tower standing in the background. From the bridge, you can view an entire Tsukuda Jima surrounded by skyscraper. You will notice the smell of soy sauce and mirin (sweet cooking sake) after you go across the Tsukuda Obashi(bridge). The smell comes from lines of Tsukudani (food boiled in sweetened soy sauce) store. If you want to get Tsukudani, I recommend you to go store called Ten-an. If you can't choose what to try, I suggest you to get an assortment of Tsukudani (1000 yen). It perfectly goes with steamed rice!

Sumiyoshi Jinja(shrine) is right next to Ten-an. After you go out from Sumiyoshi Jinja, there is a red bridge called Tsukuda Kobashi. After you cross the bridge, and go into a close pathway, there is Tsukuda Tendai Jizouson ( a place to enshrine guardian deity of children) and a huge ginko tree. Please visit this place when you come to Tsukuda Jima.

Around Sumiyoshi Jinja area is full of old downtown atmosphere. And anyplace you look over, there are always tall buildings in your view. Tsukuda Jima had escaped earthquake disaster, and damages of WW2. Can Tsukuda-Jima escape tide of modernization??
Tokyo Central Wholesaler Market

Tsukiji Shijo ( Tsukiji Fish Market)
address:5-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku
access:1min walk from Toei Oedo Line, Tsukiji-Shijo Station
close:Sunday, and National Holidays

Tsukiji Hongan-ji
address:3-15-1 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku
access:1 min walk from Subway Hibiya Line, Tsukiji Station

address:1-3-14 Tsukuda, Chuo-ku
access:5 min walk from Toei Oedo line or Subway Yurakucho Line, Tsukishima Station Exit No. 6
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-19 11:33 | walking
After Cherry blossom season is over, let's go outside to view rape blossoms! I found from e-style75's blog that Hamarikyu Onshi Teien also does illumination at night, so I decided to visit there.

Hamarikyu Onshi Teien was built on landfill, and it is the only garden with a tidal pond in Tokyo metropolitan area. By utilizing the come and go of the tide, the garden sluices seawater into the pond - and gobies and eels are living there.
Like Rikugien I introduced before, Hamarikyu Onshi Teien is one of the gardens run by Tokyo metropolitan government, and it is also very popular cherry blossom viewing spot.
After you enter the garden, right on your left side, there is "Ohana Batake"(flower garden) with carpet of rape blossoms. You will be surrounded by the masses of rape blossoms!

It takes about 2 hours to go around this huge garden. While you are taking a walk, you will find many Tokyo seeing spots such as Tokyo tower, Rainbow bridge. Even if you don't feel like going all the way around the garden, don't miss "Shioiri no ike (tidal pond) "located on the south of the garden. You can also tastes Japanese green tea with little Japanese sweets (500 yen) at "Nakajima no Ochaya (tea room)" located at the end of "Otetsudai Bashi (bridge) " This is the bridge with 118 meters in length!

The sharp contrast between skyscrapers and the garden on the huge pond is very intriguing. Illumination at night had ended already, but you can still see the carpet of rape blossoms.
Hamarikyu Onshi Teien
address:1-1, Hamarikyu Teien, Chuo-ku
access:7 min walk from Tsukiji Shijo Station (E18) and Shiodome Station(E19) on the Oedo Line, or Shiodome Station on Yurikamome Line/15 min from Shinbashi Station(G08/A10) on the JR Line, Subway Ginza Line, and Subway Asakusa Line/Water bus (From Hinode Sanbashi to Asakusa)
open:9AM-5PM(Entrance close at 4:30PM)
close:The year-end through new year holidays (Dec. 29th - Jan 1st next year )
admission :General&Junior High students:300yen/65 years old and lder:150yen
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-18 13:04 | walking
The Toyo Bunko is located right next to Rikugien. The Toyo Bunko is the largest library as well as the research institute of Asian history and culture in Asian region.

The Toyo Bunko was established in 1917, and the classical building itself is also very nice. This library was opened when former third president of the Mitsubishi enterprise group, Mr. Hisaya Iwasaki purchased the book stocks of Australian Mr. George Ernest Morrion (1862-1920), a former political advisor to the Office of the President of the Republic of China.

Mr. Morison had an enormous collection of documents about China written in European languages. I guess he must have been a hard worker !
After the name of Japanese era was changed from Taisho to Showa, a branch division of National Diet Library was built right next to the Toyo Bunko.
There are total 88,000 books mainly from Morrison collection. The books are written in various languages, including Tibetan, Thai, Arabic, Persian, Turkish, etc.. You can also see valuable historical data such as the correspondence between Lafcadio Hearn and Chamberlain, and Marco Polo's Description of the World.
This place is like a goldmine for the historians specialized in Asian history.

In the general rule, the library requires a letter of introduction to see the books, but if you show your ID, you will be allowed to view the books. You can also easily search documents from the online search system through internet.

Even for those of you who are not Asian history experts, I recommend you to go there to enjoy deep Asian world!!

The Toyo Bunko
address:2-28-21 Hon Komagome, Bunkyo-ku
access:8 min walk from Komagome Station on JR Yamanote Line or Subway Nanboku Line
open:9AM-4:30PM(12PM-12:30PM Lunch break, request for documents close at 4PM)
close:Sat, Sun, National Holiday
Admission : Free
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-15 12:30 | walking

Walking course in Tama area

The weather is getting better!
I summarized the spots I introduced so far in the walking course map below. Please enjoy visiting these areas by either following the route, or just visiting the spot you are interested in. Cherry blossom season is almost over in metropolitan area, but there are still some remain in Tama area. Falling cherry blossom petals are like flower shower. Please enjoy!

Sakura viewing route in Tama Center area (marked in Pink line)
Tama Center station: West gate (Keio line, or Odakyu line) -> step down the stairs then go right for several meters -> visit any spots you would like to go by walking along Kotta river -> return to Tama Center station, and walk down Parthenon street to Parthenon Tama->go to Tama Chuo Koen->go southward of residential area-> Takarano koen -> Narahara Koen

"I feel like walking more"route ( marked in Yellow line)
Narahara Koen -> Tsurumaki Higashi koen -> Tsurumaki Nishi Koen (Kawai Family's Shidare-Zakura) -> Karakida Station
( Odakyu line)

" I still have a lot of energy left!"route ( marked in Blue line)
Karakida-Station (Odakyu Line) -> Plaza at the entrance of Karakida no Michi-> Observatory-> Enokido Koen-> Ohanami Hiroba-> Hyappon Sidare-> have a cup of tea at Cafe du Soeul -> go back to Karakida- Station

Enjoy your trip!
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-14 11:02 | walking map

"Cafe du Soeur" is located near Hyappon - Shidare.It is easier to find the cafe by going back to Enokido Koen direction, and walking past the residential area then heading to Karakida Station direction from drive way.

The cafe is fitted with glasses and the inside is filled with sunlight and gracefulness. Highly selected table wares are also very nice. Green Tea au lait (630 yen) is served in small cafe au lait cup. There are 5 different kinds of cake of the day, and you can order it with a drink (850 yen). I ordered a pumpkin cake and a cup of coffee. The pumpkin cake had natural and gentle sweet smell, and the coffee smelled like it was brewed from high quality coffee beans.

Weekday lunch sets starts from 800 yen. The other lunch courses that you can try even on the weekends are from 2,000 yen.. There are also dinner course menus, as well as a la carte menus, such as pasta dishes.

Every Thursday, a piano recital is held at this cafe, and sometimes it holds an event like a live concert. Interestingly, sometimes they do fortune tellings too! (reservation is required) You can also rent the entire cafe space for having private party. Some people use this place for wedding party.

I can feel that the cafe owner truly loves this cafe and people who visit here.
Cafe de Soeur is the place where we can feel the hospitality of the cafe owner.

Cafe du Soeur
address:1-7-1 Karakida, Tama-shi
access:3 min walk form Odakyu-line, Karakida Station
open: Tue- Sat 10:30AM-10PM、Sun, national holidays 11AM-8PM
close: Monday(Except national holidays)、the third Tuesday of every month.
Parking space is available.
# by cicerone-e | 2005-04-13 11:09 | eating and drinking