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Japan Day 34: Harajuku and Shibuya

Yesterday my friends and I decided to meet up at Tokyo station before beginning the adventures for the day. It was a complete gaijin moment. Why? Well, Tokyo station is basically the size of an airport, and we all ended up in places we thought were logical meet-up places! (Now we have decided to in the future meet at a shop that sells cat-tail-shaped cookies! 😛 )

We headed down Takeshita Street when we arrived in Harajuku, which is the main roadway for shops and such, located immediately outside of the Harajuku station. (For those of you interested in going, it is opposite the side of the station that leads to the Meiji Shrine, which I visited a few weeks ago).

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Today was drizzly and grey the entire day—which meant that everyone had their umbrellas up. Being a Saturday afternoon, the area was even more crowded than usual, and even moving in a pack of 4 people was a challenge!

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The street is full of small shops with every conceivable type of fashion sense, the most interesting being something called “lollita” which you can see in some stores as well as on several of the people walking about. Harajuku is also known for their crepes, and there are several stores located in and amongst the clothing stores.

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We tried to find a crepe store where we could sit down inside to enjoy them out of the rain, but after searching for awhile we gave up and went to a dessert buffet.

As if I weren’t already excited about all the cake, the moment I walked in the door I smelled pesto. Anything with pesto is my favorite food, and I don’t think I have had any pesto since I have been in Japan, so this was fantastic.

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The savory food was good, but the desserts were great! It was also a really cute atmosphere and a fun place to hang out and chat with friends.

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After lunch we did some shopping—coming across some great Engrish and unique Japan fashion. I found a great sweater/dress thing with Engrish that looks legit from a distance but makes no sense when you actually read it. >.<

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After awhile we headed over to Shibuya!

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I made a bee line for 109, a large shopping complex just on the opposite side of the Shibuya crossing from the station. My friends had gotten their hair cut and colored there last week, and I was determined to do the same. I had never colored my hair before, so it was an incredibly exciting experience.

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Another group of IES students was there when we got there—also having been referred there by the students who went last weekend. The employees got a huge kick out of us—more and more of us kept showing up, and the friends I went in with stayed with me the entire time.

There were probably 4 people who were working on my hair, but there was one guy in charge of the coloring and most of the orchestrating. Everyone seemed like they were very talented and I was never worried about how my hair would turn out. I got to practice my Japanese while I was trying to describe what I wanted to do with my hair and in chatting with the people who were working on my hair for the hour and a half I was there. Plus the guy was super attractive! 😛

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After the successful cut and color of my hair, my group met up with yet another group of IES students and headed out for dinner. We went down some random stairs and had some great yakisoba.

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All in all, a successful day despite the rainy weather. I would definitely say that Shibuya is somewhere I want to go back to, as I didn’t get to see much of the area but what I did see I would like to explore in greater depth. If you have any recommendations for things I should do in Shibuya the next time I go, let me know! 😀

Thanks for reading! ^_^

じゃ、また明日!

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