Sunday, March 26, 2017

An Afternoon in Asakusa, Tokyo

My brother was visiting us in Tokyo around late September, and during one weekday he and I took a stroll around Asakusa after lunch. No, we didn't go to Senso-ji again. Been there a million times. Instead, we started out at the famous and crowded Asakusa Nakamise and made our way through all the surrounding shotengais.

My brother bought a pair of sunglasses from a store here. At one drugstore, I was able to swatched some Coffret D'Or Premium Stay Rouge LE releases: the two consistently sold-out colors from the 2016 Fall, PK-308 and RD-220, and all of the 2016 Winter colors. And from the same store, I scored the last remaining RD-220 for myself ^.^ Seriously, if you're looking for LE items, the shotengais are your best bet!

We stumbled upon an owl cafe, aptly named Owl no Mori Asakusa with its original branch in Akihabara. This gal here brought out one of the resident owls and quickly gathered herself a crowd ^.^

Moving on to the entertainment district to the west of Senso-ji. From the Don Quixote below I picked up 4 sets(!) of Tsubaki Oil Nouveau 2015 Winter Limited Shampoo and Conditioner at just 1,000yen each, and even better deal than the first set I bought for 1,200yen! The savings were sweet, but lugging the 4 sets home on foot wasn't so sweet. Ha. Thankfully, my brother helped with most of the heavy carrying. Hoarding goal succeeded. I packed them all home with me to the US of A, and hubby and I have since gone through 2 sets.

We also came across this theater, Mokubakan (木馬館), a member of the Tokyo Popular Play Association. The troupe on tour at the time was Koujou (劇団荒城). When we were there, one of the actors was walking around in full costume and makeup, probably during a break. Hilariously enough, there was a trail of obaasans (the older ladies) following wherever he went, and only a few were brave enough to stop him for a photo. I was close enough and was terribly tempted to snap a picture of him and his adoring fans, but then he turned around and spotted us and so I refrained.

Also on display then at the Asakusa Station (Exit 1, I believe) were two mikoshi, showing off the craftsmanship of an artisan by the name of Miyamoto (Unosuke) Shigeyoshi. Mr. Miyamoto is the 7th generation head of a family business founded in 1861 and specializes in mikoshi for shrines, and taiko drums and instruments for Noh. Apparently, the imperial household was a former client.

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