September 2006

Here’s a video splicing together some footage we took through the window of our city tour bus in Tokyo on January 21st.

Our tour guide and narrator, one Mr. Sato, was quite the humorous one–I especially loved his commentary on the size of the Police Headquarters: Tokyo is so safe that there’s no need for police on the streets…so they just built a big building for them all to sit in and watch TV. (Just try getting away with a crack like that, all you tour guides in China.)

And the educational angle: In case you’ve been wondering how to say “bus” or “light” in Chinese, listen carefully. You’ll hear my then four-year old daughter ask (and get the answers from) my Wife in the middle of this.

Here are some more pictures showing the X-treme snow we enjoyed during our tour of Tokyo on January 21st. (To refresh your memory, many of the outlying areas in Japan suffered their worst snowfalls in years last winter, but Tokyo had almost no snow last season…until these record-setting flakes hit town on our first full day there.)

Two of these photos were taken from our tour bus window, one from our tour boat window, and one (with the Statue of Liberty) at a Shopping Complex…which was a trip in and of itself: I know she was tired and jet-lagged, but right in the middle of a crowded shopping mall in Tokyo is where our then 3-year old discovered her ability to throw herself to the ground and scream bloody murder.

Sorry, no pictures of that to share….

The snow in Tokyo on January 21st, 2006 was pretty incredible.

When we flew into Japan the day before, it was clear, with no trace of snow anywhere.

But when we woke up the next morning and looked outside, it felt first like “Snow Day! No School!”

But then I remembered we were just starting our extended vacation in Asia…so we got up and had at it.

Here are some pictures and video from our stop at Meiji Shrine that day, hacked together just to illustrate “Lots of Snow.” (It’s too long, but sorry, I’m not going to take the time to redo it.) My favorite part, though: to clear the snow off the walkways, they were using firehoses. New snow, you can get some traction with that. Frozen firehose water, not so much….

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