Crappy internet and too much to do have severely constrained my ability to consistently update, especially with the non-anime stuff. I have a ton of pics and video, but the latter especially may end up not getting posted until I finally get a stable and non-throttled connection.
I made a trip out to Ikebukuro for the grand opening of Animate’s newly designed flagship store, where they proudly featured Ika squid-ink pasta sauce (complete with picture of her vomiting), Thermae Ramune, Tsuritama DUCK! Curry, and several varieties of Evangelion chips. Ikebukuro is definitely more of an otome-themed shopping area than Akiba or Nakano, but a store with eight floors is going to have something for every flavor of otaku.
Speaking of Eva, 3.0 is shattering box office records left and right. It sold an almost unbelievable 771,000 tickets on 224 screens and looks ready to become Japan’s top grosser of the year, easily. Eva Q is certainly causing a massive controversy with its content, but as I haven’t seen it yet – I’m waiting for “Movie Day” 12/1 – I’m avoiding that talk as much as possible. But in terms of impact, there’s nothing like Eva. Long live the king.
Now for the pics… The first set comes from my neighborhood, Kagurazaka.
Next, Takao-san, about an hour West of Tokyo. A well-known spot for fall colors and Mt. Fuji views, though there was too much haze for the latter. Also for it’s 1200 year-old temple dedicated to Tengu, and for truly massive numbers of visitors, especially in the Fall.
Next up is the second day of the Tori-no-Ichi Matsuri. This time I want to the Otori Shrine in Shibuya. The festival in Asakausa is reportedly even bigger, but this was an amazing experience – easily the most fun I’ve had at any Japanese matsuri. Truly massive numbers of people packed into the old shrine quarter tucked into the middle of Tokyo’s busiest area, with the line to pray at the main shrine extended for blocks. Hundreds of stands and vendors, traditional Shinto music, and every time someone bought one of the larger kumade, the traditional celebratory response. A very wild night, but a blast nonetheless.
Real-live goldfish scooping:
The kumade chant:
Shinto music at the shrine pavilion:
Kamakura pics coming up shortly…