Saturday, June 21, 2008

Japan Trip

Yes, me and the missus went back to Japan for a three week trip this year in May. We had a wonderful time, and I've gathered some shots here to share with those few people who still check this blog. To summarise, we first arrived in Tokyo and spent a night there, waking early and heading out to Tsukiji fish market before getting the Shinkansen up to Aomori. We stayed in Hirosaki at Aki's mum's place for a couple of weeks, where we enjoyed the luxury of quality Japanese food everyday and free accommodation while the weather remained really good pretty much everyday we were there. We did a lot of onsening, drinking, day-tripping and just generally chilling out for the duration.
After that we went down to visit Aki's sister in Niigata, which was wicked because I got to climb a really impressive mountain and we experienced the slow Niigata countryside lifestyle. From Ryouko's house you can see about three or four different mountain ranges and they are most impressive.
A couple of nights there and we headed out towards Tokyo again for a couple of nights before flying back. We hooked up with some old friends of Aki's, Naka and Jun, and their 5 year-old daughter Niko. Lots of other touristy stuff before flying back to the UK.

Anyway, here are the pics:

Me in London, on our way to the high life!

We drank a bit on the plane. We were in good spirits and were down right overdue a good holiday!

Yes, this is the car that my brother in law designed. Well, the suspension anyway.

Aki's brother was chief suspension engineer on the core team that designed the flashy new Nissan GTR. This car was just at a show room when we were driving past one day. Aki's mum enlightened the poor sales girl about how important her eldest son's input was while we just played around with all the gadgets inside!

These next two shots are of Aki's most recent niece, Fuku. That's her real first name, but Aki was calling her Pukutan and I think it has stuck. Her cheeks are the largest I've ever seen, on either man or beast, weighing in at an impressive 50% of her body weight. Not really, but they were big.

Full body shot:

We had a few good drinking sessions with some old friends as well. I'd been for a long run during the day, and later that night we met up with some friends for beers and karaoke. I sang one song, which apparently made me emotional, and then I fell asleep on the couch. It was a very long run, and we'd done plenty of drinking before karaoke so I had put some hours in.

This one is from a different night though, when all of Aki's group of Junior High school friends gathered at a Chinese restaurant being run by an old friend of Aki's.

For some reason I can't upload any more photos onto this blog post so I'll cut it here and start another one soon.

See you soon.