This past Monday, Steph and I took a day off work to get our annual (mandatory) health check done. We finished in the morning and decided to make the most of our day by heading in to the city. It was funny because we kept saying "okay it's Monday and everyone else is working so what can we do in Tokyo that we wouldn't usually be able to do on a crowded day?" But then we just ended up gravitating towards the normal (easily accessible) things aka...western food and coffee...haha
Oh but first...since we were restricted from eating breakfast before our health check, we immediately ran to 7-11 to grub on coffee and (my fav) chocolate bread.
We were both down for some fruit in our lives so we hit up Sambazon in Hiroo for some acai bowls! My prediction is that in a few years...acai bowls will BLOW up in Japan. Right now, they're only at a few places but I just know that they're gunna catch on like wildfire. no doubt.
I got the Japan limited Matcha Acai bowl and it was amazing. I could eat this everyday no questions asked.
The first time I had Sambazon was in SD with my good friend Kimi and it's funny the same chain found its way to Tokyo!
This is the #1 way moms get around in Tokyo. They stick one kid in the front and one in the back and cruise around the city like they're in a minivan. And some of them, like this one, are electrically powered so they moms can get up and down hills with ease. Modern motherhood.
This store name had me laughing. I don't often see English puns in Japan, so I wonder if only foreigners will think this is funny?! hah! (homophones are very confusing to Japanese people and I don't blame them...bear bare, board bored, soul sole, maid made...English is ridiculous!)
After stuffing our faces with acai, it was time for another coffee. Steph's coffee addiction is rubbing off on me. We hit up Canvas Tokyo which seems to be the most instagrammable coffee shop in the city! There were literally 15 college girls waiting out front of the shop (2pm on a Monday, mind you) and we took one look at that loooong line and were like..."nahhh. we pass" and then headed to a more low key, legit, coffee aficionado place in Azabu - NEM COFFEE!
ok but I have to admit, Canvas is very photogenic. Ok but on to the real deal...Nem...
This coffee shop was built in a house on this tiny street off the main road - very hipster from the get go!
Glorious wood furniture, strong pour over, perfectly made lattes, AESOP soap in the bathroom, the cutest married couple baristas, free wifi, chill music vibes...YEP. smells like pure Tokyo hipster to me!
My fav situation = Black coffee + endless journaling time. Thank you LORD!
You think we'd eaten/drunken enough by this point but then we walked past the fancy foreign grocery store (Azabujuban is home to a lot of foreigners) and saw T A C O S. We stopped dead in our tracks. Tacos in Tokyo are like the rarest food to come by so we had to try.
expensive. but worth EVERY PENNY (I MEAN YEN).
THE MOST LEGIT CARNITAS TACO WITH FRESH ONION, CILANTRO, AND LIME IN A WARM CORN TORTILLA...CUE TEARS OF JOY.
This Aussie (coulda been NZ?) in front of us said we had to try the chips and salsa. The one man who runs the food truck cuts the tortilla right there and fries the chips fresh. Salty and amazing.
Hawaiian sun in a vending machine. I want this in my house.
So we still had the afternoon free and decided to pick up a few things we needed in Ginza, aka the shopping mecca in Tokyo . They just opened a new mall (TOKYU) and I have got to admit, it might be the most well curated mall in the Tokyo area. The whole 6th and 7th floor are dedicated to JAPAN made items and although expensive, they're all spot on amazing.
Also, the TOKYU building has a sick view on the 6th floor. I used my new shoes as a model lol.
Too much to love about a city like Tokyo.
quick shout out to my phone case which has stood the test of time (my entire time in Japan this far) It was given to me by one of my former students and I've gotten more compliments on it than any thing else I've ever owned. It's hand made in Japan and so legit. Check them out - OJAGA DESIGN.
I love the streets of Ginza and all the dope building designs around.
OK...I know it seems like all we do is eat and eat (partially true) but Steph only ate one taco so she was down for shake shack at around dinner time. I was stuffed from my two tacos and chips so I opted for root beer and fries HAHA. Oh man, so not healthy. We laughed it off and called it our "American day" which was so true -- ACAI, COFFEE, TACOS, BURGERS, FRIES...HAHAHA.
It's mask season now and you will literally walk the streets and see every other person (if not every person) wearing a mask.
Walking back through the Tokyo International Forum to get to Tokyo station.
and to end with this serious self portrait haha... I thought i'd include it to say I chopped my hair off last week. A student that graduated from Ichikashi is training to be a hairdresser and asked if any of us teachers wanted a free haircut! Free haircut!? SIGN ME UP! So I let her chop off a lot of it since I'm not super attached to my hair, and plus she could get more practice in. Win win!
Being able to sit at a coffee shop and journal for hours, fuel my body with good food, and take my camera around the city was the perfect kind of day off for me!