Oh! Sumo!

We got up leisurely this morning and headed across town to the Sumo ticket office. It happens that the May two week tournement is happening during our visit, so of course we had to go! It was at the Ryogoku Kokugikan stadium. We had originally planned to go super early some morning to try to get the cheap tickets that go on sale at 8 a.m. but with a line forming from 6 a.m. Instead we opted to just buy regular tickets and attend today!

Considering our tickets were 50 USD each, I was disappointed with where our seats were — way up at the top! But to get at the bottom we’d have to fork out a minimum of 400 USD! nope! But it was super cool regardless. We were able to walk around down at the bottom and even sit in other people’s seats until they showed up. We also got the 100 yen English translation radio to help us along. it was great having that. Otherwise I think we would have gotten bored, but with it, we totally got into it. My “west side stables” won over Paul’s “east side” overall.

We bought a few trinkets, ate junk food and folo drank beer – minimally compared to the Japanese who had boxes at their seats! It was great though. We were there about 4 1/2 hours and could have stayed even longer if he had gone on longer. It’s on for the rest of the week.. so we saw some pretty good Sumo guys and will now keep up and see who wins overall on Sunday.

In between ticket buying and the main matches, we came back to the hotel to do laundry. I have to say I am a bit disappointed with how Tokyo doesn’t seem to be as technologically advanced as some of the other places we’ve been in Japan! For example we had to actually do our laundry.. i.e. put it in the washer with soap (and the machine was out of it, so we had to hike to the shop to get some) and put it in the dryer! What happened to the super cool duo machinese?!?! And the internet at our hotel stinks! they don’t allow uploads from the guest rooms. They had said they would get it fixed for our stay, but of course nothing is fixed today. grr. So no photos until we get back to our developing country with seemingly better internet!!

tonight we popped into the starbucks overlooking the ‘busiest’ pedistrian intersection near Shibuya station to people watch and try to get some photos. Then off to a huge Tower records.. quite a bit of foreign stuff, but the prices are no match to the US, so it’s not really worth us buying anything here.

And then to some food… On the way home we saw a street band playing near the station and stood in the rain listening for a while. They were really good even though we couldn’t understand the words. I just love how musical this city is. It must be hard to break through though with so many bands all over the place.

And even though we are wide awake and probably should go out tonight, we are going to try to go to bed so we can get up at 4 am to visit the fish market by 5:30! We are really looking forward to the insanity that awaits us there.

thankfully we had a mellow day today so our feet are slowly recovering from the brutal schedule i’ve had us on for the last 2+ weeks!! Tomorrow though will hopefully be another full day. somehow we have to fit in time to shop! Folo was counting on buying tons of tshirts here, but it seems most places carry americanized shirts, so they aren’t that interesting. we need time to search out all the nooks and crannies of the shopping neighborhoods. So now our plan is to do a bit of touristy stuff in the first half of the day and shopping for the rest. We’ll see how that goes.

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