Cherry Blossoms (桜)

Hi,

I just wanted to share a few of the cherry blossom photos I have taken recently. You will notice that many of them feature people having picnics on the grass in a very peaceful manner. This is because I took this photo on a weekday. There is a strange mania that overtakes a Japanese person’s senses when these little buds finally open to reveal the pure colour underneath and the parks and pretty much every blade of grass (or patch of mud) available is filled with a Japanese person’s rear. It’s quite similar to the way British people act on a sunny day actually.

Most of these photos are taken in Shinjuku park and a few near where I live, where they light up the trees at night.

As you’ve probably noticed, the last picture features no Sakura. This is actually a picture of the terrace of a Starbucks in Harajuku. The terrace – situated on the roof of the building – is filled with tress, loungers and soft jazz. It has a view of Harajuku and Omotesando on three sides. If it wasn’t always so busy, it would probably be one of my favourite places in Tokyo. As it is, it’s still pretty amazing and without doubt the best coffee shop I have been to.

Also on the roof of this building is Bill’s, an Australian owned breakfast-focused restaurant. One of the most disappointing things about Tokyo is its limited choice of breakfast eateries. Deciding, as we had a couple of days off, to try two of the lauded ones in our area (Bill’s and Bubby’s), we tried both and were disappointed. Both of my full English (full Aussie in Bill’s) breakfasts were diminutive, the plate being filled mainly with toast. For breakfasts that cost me around £10 and £15, I expected a lot more. I could get that quality of full English at any pub in England for half the price or go to a nice place and get a good one for still marginally cheaper. My wife seemed happy with her pancakes, but pancakes are pancakes are pancakes, right?

It’s also worth noting that we had to come back after an hour just for a table at Bill’s, while people arriving later were told they would have to wait over two hours. I was blown away after seeing what was on offer for myself (the sausage was basically a cocktail sausage and the bacon was pretty weak). Word of mouth and advertising must do wonders here. Entrepreneurs out there – there is a serious gap in the market for a good breakfast! (or maybe good quality ingredients are hard to find)

TTFN

Chris

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