Tokyo Blond Is Not Porn

Tokyo Blond is not a porn blog, about hair or even, as one pithy friend remarked, a micro beer or late 1980s glam metal band ("Dude, I just saw Skid Row and Tokyo Blond opened and played a killer set").

The purpose of this blog is to chronicle my experiences in Tokyo - poignantly, visually, irreverently - for fun.

Anybody can tag along...that is if I like you. This blog will endeavor to be entertaining and honest and frequent enough to keep those following interested including me.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Shinjuku Sakura

This time we did Hanami (cherry blossom viewing party) right.  We're getting quite good at this.

First, we went to Mistukoshi and bought bags of those just made delicacies we always pass by but never have occasion to purchase.  The food stores in the basement of major Tokyo department stores are a picnickers paradise. They remind me of the food halls of Harrod's in London.  They're not as grand, but probably fresher.  Fresh made tonkatsu (fried pork cutlet with finely shredded cabbage and sweet sauce), just steamed shumai with dipping sauce, handmade noodles, roasted, sliced duck, two salads (shrimp and  octopus), a variety of desserts: sakura cake (of course), Taiyaki (fish shaped cakes stuffed with cream custard - Russell is addicted to these), freshly baked almond danish, a virtual cornucopia of tastes.

Second, we brought a friend, Nancy.

Third, we chose a great location: Shinjuku Park, best picnicking spot in Tokyo.

Fourth, we brought a tarp, although ours isn't blue.  It's from Better Homes and Gardens or as I like to call them, "Better Homes & Garbage."

Last, but not least, we brought lots of wine.  Yes, the park signs warned against bringing alcohol into the park.  Yes, they checked our bags at the entrance but didn't pull out either bottle.  They weren't cleverly hidden either.  Yes, there were temporary "No Alcoholic Beverage" signs posted every hundred yards.  But we made sure to sit as far away as possible from them.  No one bothered us and we weren't the only ones drinking.  The police seemed more interested in directing visitors to the best cherry trees, than enforcing the no drinking rules.  We were fine with that and finished off two bottles.

The park was crowded with sakura revelers, but not nearly as crowded as it would be that weekend.  We were there on Friday and the weather was perfect.   The blossoms were at about 80% I'd say.

Shinjuku Park is very large, with an expansive grassy area, flanked by cherry trees.  It also has a sycamore forest which is spectacular in the Fall, and a couple of glossy, koi inhabited ponds, with the requisite gently arching Japanese bridges, of course.  

Have friend will Hanami.

Picnic area framed with blossoming cherry trees.

The carnage.

Do you think he has any idea what his shirt says?
Do you think his parents do?

After the picnic we walked through the park admiring the well planned landscaping.  So did everyone else.

Weeping cherry tree - I LOVE these!
Now how do I get all these people out of the picture.
Do they have a "cut people out"option in photo shop?

Pretty in pink.

Life imitating art; art imitating life.

Yeah, this don't suck.

Requisite oriental bridge over water.

Sigh, so beautiful.

Under the canopy.

Cascading blossoms.

On the way back we saw this.  Sell out!  Richard Gere Hawking Orangina.  What the?....  Did I drink too much wine.

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