I woke up feeling so happy to be in the comfort of Pin's apartment. I think I said, "Japan... It's so not India!" I think I got up too early though and was lured into an internet binge for a couple of hours. Online payments to make, people to Skype. I met Pin and his friend Rebecca for sushi near Shizuoka station. The restaurant had a sushi conveyor belt as well as a touch screen computer to place orders. When you are done, they scan chips inside the plates and give you some sort of smart card to take to the register to pay. Japan dude. In the restaurant the night before, the table had a button on it to summon the waitress. Service.
I spent the rest of the afternoon searching for a haircut joint called Snip Snap. I was failing miserably until I gave in and went back to Pin's to consult a map. What is it with me and wandering foreign places without a map? I've wasted hours lost in the heat this way... though I do discover neighborhoods much better this way.
The video below gives you a taste of my day. I mentioned walking around the streets here is like walking on a movie set because a) it looks so different from home and like something out of a 'movie' and b) it's so clean, like a movie set (on a film set everything is controlled, even the grime) And the vending machines... so convenient. I'm walking around sweating and I think, "Boy, I sure wish I could have a cold drink right now" Boom, a vending machine within 20 feet. Pin claims there's one vending machine per 7 people here or something insane. I dunno. I must say, it ain't cheap. I do miss the 50-cent water in India.
Pin's new place has one of these toilets that I thought was so great the first time I used one in 2004. The water is fresh, it's actually the water that refills the tank for the next flush. And I forgot to mention in the video that it also has a heated seat!
Later in the evening we went to the harbor in Shimizu for drinks and snacks while checking out the lunar eclipse. A little cloudy but still pretty special. I've been in such a good mood here. Too many days of rough travel perhaps. I really need to figure out where to go in the few days I have here. I wish I could stay longer but my budget's already hurting enough. I'll try to head to Mt. Fuji soon and do some day trips to Kyoto, Nagoya, Tokyo, and see Hiroshima.