With Tokyo now over (for now!) it was time for City número 2: Yokohama!
I was very excited about making my way from Tokyo to Yokohama because one was about to board a Shinkansen (aka Bullet train). I had of course heard how fast they were but we’re unwillingly to accept they hype. It can best be described as ‘shit off a shovel’.
After a quick change of underwear mid-journey, it was time to absorb some time in Yokohama.
I first checked out Yokohama stadium. The very stadium Barcelona beat Santos to win the most recent Fifa World Club Championships.
Next was China town and a what a delight it was. Lots of quirky alleys filled with shops selling the most bizarre of ingredients, junk and other oriental goodies. On the surface it looked like any other China Town does. Red, green and populated with Chinese people. It looked different though and it took me a while to take note of it; it was spotlessly clean (just like the rest of Japan thus far). I’m not just talking clean for a China Town but pristine, eat-off-the-floor, Cilit Bang clean. Very impressive considering the clear high levels of food preparation and consumption in the area.
Next up was the Yamashita Park, Harbour View Park, the Red Brick Warehouse (shopping centre), Porters World (another mall), Cosmo world and some general gallivanting.
It’s very difficult not to make the London-Brighton analogy when comparing Tokyo and Yokohama. As you might have guessed it, Tokyo is similar to London in many respects. Quick, crazy, niche and specific areas of interest whilst appearing to have a continuous thirst for movement, that is quenched by an always providing and interconnected transport network.
The people are similar too. Every journey has a purpose. Every step taken appears to be another one closer to the office, meeting room or wherever the finish line may be. No time for ‘chit chat’. I quite like that.
Yokohama on the other hand is completely different and clearly quite proud of it. It has a laid back ‘on the coast’ vibe whilst maintaining an air of class (take note Margate). Lots of nice little quaint eateries where one can buy cakes that are both functional and present worthy. Also like Brighton it has an overtly popular theme-park area called Cosmo World that appeals to the cheese-ball in all of us.
People are similar to that of Brighton too. People taking walks just because they can (one lady was walking her rabbit), people walking along the promenade without too many cares in where they should end up. I like this also.
So to sum it up I liked Yokohama and can appreciate why many choose to work in Tokyo and inhabit in the former.
Next: Kawaguchiko, Fuji 🙂
P.S. Still need to invest in a mask.