Tokyo Blues (Part 1?)

I am counting the days; 5 days already. Tokyo, one of the most advanced cities in the world and now I am living in it. People say each city has its different atmosphere, its own unique characters. I have 20 days to inhale them.

Living in a hotel for 20 days for me is quite an achievement. Extraordinary one. I mean, come on, 20 days in this tiny winy room that doesn’t resemble a house in any way! I’m sure even if I stayed in a suite, the feeling would still be the same. Now, I understand how those superstars feel whenever they say ‘living from one hotel room to another’. I have prepared myself then, in case I turn out into some kind of superstar in the future...

This kind of living has successfully planted 3 words in my mind: loneliness, boredom, and traveling. The only good thing I have from this kind of living is I do NOT have to COOK! Everyday I’m free from the obligation to cook. Everyday we eat different kinds of food. Outside, of course. No cooking, no washing dishes, no cleaning room. For a human being that enjoys no-cooking-days and eating-out-days, this is heaven. Please note that I haven’t missed my kitchen yet... But, there are times when I don’t want to go out. I just want to lie down in my bed. And I especially want to go out of the room after lunch hour so then I can wake up a little later. Unfortunately, I don’t have that luxury. These cleaning ladies are so persistent and insistent that they knock on our door when it is time for them to clean the room despite the Do-Not-Disturb sign hanging on our door. So, there we are, every afternoon, ushered outside from our own room…

Now that I am outside the hotel, all I can do is going around the city, and perhaps going shopping a little?! Sound nice, eh? You bet! For a couple of days, but it gets really tiring and costly afterward. I miss my bike, already. In Honjo, we went around the (small) city by bike. No need for bus, taxi, or train. Here in Tokyo, we need the train and our feet. No ojek. Getting on and off the train are tiring, especially when we have to change the platform. And walkiiiinnnggg… somebody, please please please invent an ojek business here… I’m wondering when I can start using high heels again (not that I enjoy it). And, I still am amazed (and still feel disbelief) by the trends of carrying tote bag and wearing high heels. I guess I am so fashion dinosaur -whatever that means. One day when we were exhausted from walking around Asakusa where a great temple is located, I could not help feeling… sore all over my bones from seeing women in their high heels. Forgive me.

Have I told you how busy and crowded Tokyo is? (or at least, that’s how I feel about this city and about Shinjuku, especially) Everywhere I turn my head around, I see people. I cannot even do my triangle-shaped-arms pose (you know, when you put both arms on your waist) without people stumbling into them. And, if I stop my walk for a second, someone behind me will bump into me, and another one behind him will bump into him, and the next person will bump into that third one, and the bumping goes on. I must ask tetangga sebelah for a trick to avoid this bumping incident or else I’m gonna be arrested for public disturbance.

Today, something outrageous happened. We were in Tokyo train station trying to reach the stairs to our platform. The distance between us and the stairs was only 1 meter or less, but we couldn't move forward! Between us and the stairs hundred and hundred of people were walking from all sides covering the landing of the stairs. It was just impossible to cut the stream! Wanna know what I did? I just laughed. Stupid, eh, but what else could I do? Papap, on the other hand, began to whistle low. He imitated a sound that sounded something between an ambulance sirene and a local bug (called Semi-chan, which produces we-we-we sound). He pushed the baby car (with Hikari inside) forward toward the stream of people while whistling low. Miraculously, people began to notice and stopped walking (while the other people behind them again bumping into each other). The way to the stairs was clear and we could get there safely. If I had known this trick earlier...

Tokyo, like any big cities in the world, is full of foreigners. Look who’s talking. Speaking (or trying to exercise) Japanese needs extra effort because almost everyone speaks English, or an English-sound-like language. The only Japanese language I hear is from the salesmen/women who promote their products out loud (another characteristic in Japan). Unlike many other foreigners, you –Indonesians- don’t need to be amazed by this; you can hear the screaming of salesmen/women in any markets. The only difference is the language. One thing that is the same between Tokyo and Honjo is the way people in both areas eat in a restaurant. For us, or for me especially, eating in the restaurant is a way to relax. By eating in a restaurant I want to convey a message that I can spend as much time as I want. In Japan, it is a different philosophy. You eat quickly and get outta there quickly too. No chatting, no slow eating, no non-sense. If I take longer time in that restaurant, I am being selfish because many people would need my seat but can't. This depresses me, especially when my only reason to be in a restaurant is to take a break from a loooonnnggg walk...
Come to think of it... I just realize that I still have an upcoming Shinjuku kopdar. Which restaurant is willing to take us in for more than an hour? Sir?
What? We don't care?
Right!

picture: that person in the picture is supposed to be pointing at a sign with the station's name on it.

5 comments:

    seruuu yah bisa keliling2 dulu di tokyo, oleh2nya dunk nanti diambil saat kopdar :D,.. btw saya jg mo keliling2 dulu akh sejenak eh 2 jenak ..

    ada oleh2 dari blue Tokyo ? :D

    tote-bag dan high heels. pernah nyoba dan selalu gagal menikmatinya. wah, jadi pengen kapan2 motret jalanan di 5th avenue pagi-pagi bener (newyorker rajin bangun pagi semua bok, kecuali gue), isinya "klub tote bag dan high heels"! gosh....

    You look like the bee girl in the Blind Melon video in that shirt.

    jeehh jeeeh jadi preman tokyo sekarang dia:D...kapan kita kopdar bu? sabtu ato minggu Insha Allah kita bisa...

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