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Romantic Tokyo @ Bread Market, Nezu Museum, Eternal Lights

Romantic Tokyo @ Bread Market, Nezu Museum, Eternal Lights

To spend a romantic day in Tokyo, we get our bikes out and cycle to events we find interesting. There is always so much to chose from and once we have a goal, we always see more on the way when biking around.

The breeze in my hair, the freedom to take any road I want, to be right in the environment and stop to take in anything of interest anytime, makes biking so much more enjoyable than taking the car or metro.

 

This owner probably thinks otherwise.

Tokyo, Japan

 

But I really love to look at Tokyo’s architecture when riding through Tokyo’s districts. And when I said 70s tile design is hideous, I was proven wrong with this example.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

And another lesson to review my aversion to tiles. It is difficult to see, but this building is adorned with brown mosaic tiles.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Our first stop was a charming Aoyama bread market. Europe nostalgia with French writing. Location: 5-53-70 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo (there will be more bread festivals, check for change in location).

Tokyo, Japan

 

German bread produce and European style loafs and buns were on sale.

Tokyo, Japan

 

And Christmas Stollen with cute booklets about bread in German with Japanese translations “Die Geschichte vom Brot”.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Bread artisans were selling their crafted doughy creations. The market was a huge success – all we saw when we arrived in the afternoon, were (almost) empty stands.

Tokyo, Japan

 

What also amazed me were the prices. 1600 to 2000 yen for a micro loaf of bread.

Tokyo, Japan

 

I felt a bit sorry for ourselves. Our hopes to get a crusty warm, soft loaf of bread to bring back home and pamper it with Hokkaido butter and strawberry jam… vaporised.

Tokyo, Japan

 

There was more leftover produce at the healthy veggie stands.

Tokyo, Japan

 

We comforted ourselves with some sweet kaki fruit (Japanese persimmon).

Tokyo, Japan

 

Cheering up as the R and L sounds are really confusing for Japanese people – you can see many adorable mixups.

Tokyo, Japan

 

I was surprised to see a pizza stand in a van – with a real oven inside the vehicle!

Tokyo, Japan

 

But our romantic Italian dinner was yet to come.

First we cycled down to Nezu Museum. With a collection of Japanese and East Asian arts (paintings, calligraphy, sculpture, ceramics), the highlight is its Japanese garden, pond and tiny tea houses. Location: 6-5-1 Minami Aoyama, Minato-Ku, Tokyo. Admission: 1200 yen.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

Bowls and Bowls of rows. Ido tea bowls, most from the 16th century, and their seemingly artless and simple shape are a fetish in Japanese tea ceremony. The unique features of each are pedantically described and yes, there are differences in glaze colour, foot, depressions, rim and other marks. More than the bowls themselves, the actual act and level of appreciation amazed me.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Anyhow, some are more easily entertained than others…. especially if there is an enchanted garden escape.

The garden was stunningly beautiful, reflecting the current change in season. It’s autumn!

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

Evidence of happy placeness = swirling through the shrubbery.

Tokyo, Japan

 

After I got dizzy twirling, I was ready to leave.

Tokyo, Japan

 

And totally ready for a conbini snack. Royal milk tea, Hyaluronic Tbc and green tea cake. Japanese snacks.

Tokyo, Japan

 

The delicious  refreshment kept my head spinning, in particular after I thought I saw a picture of a Japanese member of the mega-girl-band AKB48 but upon closer inspection AKB 48 was…

Tokyo, Japan

 

Art has its ways with things. We saw more garish, arty, toned down, kitschy and simply cute art at the Spiral gallery (the one with the cool spiral ramp), also housing a café, the best of not-traditional-Japanese souvenirs and a misplaced sports department. Location: Spiral Bldg 1F, 5-6-23 Minami-Aoyama, Minato, Tokyo.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

As it was getting darker, we were going (cycling) to the eternal place for romance, lights, bling bling and probably the biggest sparkling chandelier I have seen.

Tokyo, Japan

 

No obstacles were too big of a challenge to find the Eternal Lights exhibition in Ebisu.

Tokyo, Japan

 

With a short break to marvel at one of Japans high-tech trash burners, professionally called incineration plants. Right in the midst of Tokyo’s densely populated urban centre Shibuya, well at least it had red lights.

Pretty… well, here is the real stunner: Japan produces a lot of trash (things are ultra safety wrapped and you always get a plastic bag with everything) but still Japan has no trash problem. All is burned at incredibly high temperatures which leaves no pollution but generates energy/excess electricity and gets rid of all the litter! Wow, right? And there is no bad smell, nor noise. Passing right next to it all I could sense was a faint trace of sauna like dry air. Most of Tokyo wards have these facilities.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Passing romantically adorned construction sites, we were definitely getting in the mood for more Japanese excess decoration.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Did we seriously have another snack?  Can’t deny it as there is evidence. Someone took a picture of strawberry cream daifuku, fresh pineapple and milk tea, using our camera.

Tokyo, Japan

 

First signs we were closer to bling. A girly shop of sparkling and glowing.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

Finally, there it was. The illuminated venue that you can probably see clearly from space. The Baccarat Eternal Lights. Location: 4-20 Ebisu, Shibuya, Tokyo.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

Ooh, she said.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Ooh, he said.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Ooh, they said. The 5 meter tall chandelier.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

 

(The wedding parlour and restaurant looks better without the high rise contrast.)

Tokyo, Japan

 

Tokyo is getting so Christmas-sy these days.

Tokyo, Japan

 

Guess whose hiding behind the glitz and I promise I am older than 5.

Tokyo, Japan

 

I think this is the place of romance-extreme for couples. You can walk the aisle of glowing trees, of course on a red carpet, from the Christmas tree towards the chandelier in the centre, surrounded by the sounds of bell ringing. Tacky and weirdly charming all at once.

Our Japanese friends explained to us that Christmas is a day of couple romance and lights. Not connected to Christian believes in any way. Suits me. Although I am also excited to go back to Poland on Christmas day, where Christmas is the day of family reunion and presents.

There is so much excitement in Tokyo, which we needed to wash down with a carafe of white wine at one of my favourite Japanese restaurants featuring a fantastic Italian menu.

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Have a romantically sweet dayhttp://yoursmiles.org/tsmile/cake/t6502.gif

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