Arrival by htkay
April 4, 2009, 8:48 am
Filed under: Group, Tokyo, Travel

Having arrived at the Narita International Airport at nearly 10am local time not knowing what to expect but remembering stories and advice on the vast differences between our cultures, everything seemed rather familiar; the lobby had a starbucks, gift shop and Bureau de Change. The rather standard looking travellers gazing at the rather standard announcements board was all rather disappointing.


The weather was a mild 12 degrees Celsius and the sun was shining; as it had been in London when we left, really we could have been anywhere.

But then it became apparent we were definitely somewhere else; the toilet seat was heated and played bird song or the sound of running water, depending on preference, there were men in white gloves directing us across zebra crossings, that seemed perfectly capable by themselves, the seats on the coach felt as though they were only a couple of inches from the floor so the knees were bent at acute angles, and as the coach proceeded into the city, we couldn’t be anywhere else but the world’s most populated metropolitan area.

The apartment blocks, all a standard plot size, rose between seven and fifteen stories above the tightly packed streets below, that we caught an occasional glimpse of through cluttered telegraph poles and electricity cables from the elevated highway, which cut its way through the residential suburbs without any regard for the buildings on either side, or the occupants of the spaces beyond the blank windows.

It took us around two hours from the airport to our hostel in Taito-ku, Taito, a Northeastern ward of Tokyo and about thirty minutes by tube from the main areas of Ginza and Rippongi in the centre of Tokyo.




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