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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

One thing I've noticed here is how seriously they take their traffic control here! Not necessarily (or at all!) while actually moving, but in terms of when and where you can park, it's all very well organized! There seems to be an entire industry build around white gloved parking attendants who are guiding you in and out of parking lots for department stores, around construction sites, or wherever they think you might possible need some friendly guidance... Even gas station attendants will stop traffic to let you get back on the road! Anyway, this is all a bit of a random lead up to some photos from an event I saw take place today - several bikes actually getting impounded! I've never even heard of having to pay for bike parking before, but apparently, here sometimes, you have to do it, and some places are flat out no parking zones, so for these unfortunate people, they ignored this sign:
and then this happened to them:
The team of two was just driving slowly up the street in their tiny little truck and chucking in bikes that were illegally parked - very efficient 'towing'!

Anyway, today was spent in Shibuya getting costume-y things organized at Tokyu Hands, which is the best 'buy anything here' store ever! I've now managed to buy facial hair adhesive and golden blazer buttons, among other things here in Tokyo! I was helped by an overly attentive shop keeper at a large glasses shop today when I was buying, of all things, flip up, clip on, old school sunglasses! Never fear, it was part of the costume purchasing requirements, I haven't relocated to the mid eighties! Anyway, the guy helping me literally ran to the door when I walked in, and then proceeded to trot happily around the store while we wildly gestured, bowed, bobbed, and used the three words of each other's respective languages that we each knew to conduct a very happy transaction. Two minutes later, sunglasses in hand (carefully triple wrapped as is the custom here), I walked out to the chorus of 'arigato ' from all of the employees in the store. It was a very happy experience ;)

Spent a quiet night at home crafting some last minute costume items - I finally found a pair of long gloves in Tokyu Hands, and I sort of heathed together a head band with a clump of feathers on it (google flappers if you don't believe me!), and then helped Pete fabricate some parts of his costume.

When we were finished, Venus and I rewarded ourselves with a walk to Circle K (convenience store) for an icecream run - it still seems very very odd that walking down a dark street at midnight is safe, but I'm getting used to it. I ended up with some kind of weird but delicious icecream bar, which was like icecream cone shaped like a Belgian waffle which has been hollowed out and filled with vanilla icecream, with a chocolate sheet through the middle. I have no idea what the point of this particular configuration of icecream might be, but it was tasty!

Off to bed now, tomorrow is the big Metropolis Glitter Ball at Vellfarre in Roppongi - should have lots of costume pictures for tomorrow's blog!

Oh! - almost forgot one other random thing from my shopping trip today - I was trying on a pair of jeans, and noticed this random box in the change room:

Unfortunatly, the pictures are a bit blurry, but it really looks like they're providing you with bags to put over your head! I was very confused, so I examined further, and they are, indeed, head bags made out of fabric similar to dryer sheets. I guess they're so you don't get makeup on whatever you are trying on, which makes sense, I guess, but at first glance, the instructions for how to bag your head up neatly seemed veeeery odd!

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