New Year in Tokyo Japan
This is actually my first trip to Japan with a couple of Australian comrades. I pretty much went back home to Malaysia for family and meeting up with Twitter comrades. And yes, there was Comic Fiesta (convention) and Xmas!
Flew to Japan on the 25th December and spent most of my time there wandering around in Akihabara. Since its the first time for me to experience a Japanese New Year, i decided to take some pictures while passing thru .. Sensoji Temple!
Went there with a couple of comrades from Canada and the rest Australian.
I met many other twitter comrades foreign and Japanese, unfortunately i wasnt able to meet Danny Choo, the Tokyo Dancing Trooper. Ah well ..
U would not believe that this is connected directly to city buildings. From this angle, one would assume i traveled to the hill side. But its right in the middle of the district i was in. Very close to the local monorail.
When i first walked in, i thought it would be a breeze .. easy peasy ..
then i ate those words i said in my mind .. with a mind speech bubble 'Holy Crap Almighty!'
I ended up missing the train coz i didnt get on the one with my comrades from Canada and Aus, but if i did, i prob wouldnt be focused enough to try take pictures as i go.
The crowd of New Years' Eve were very well managed by the local police. This is the inner areas after a long walk passed the front gate.
Beside it u could see this 'pagoda' structure all lighten up
As i walked thru the 2nd gate, there was a huuuuuge lantern with Raijin and Fujin on each of its sides.
Cops in Japan make themselves very visible, whether its on the street or in the temples with their high platforms. Completely different from what i see in Malaysia.
After roughly one hour of waiting, i finally see Sensoji Temple. I pretty much knew what to do at a temple after watching eons of anime and reading manga.
Then it was somehow different .. where is the rope bell thingie?! Well .. 'When in Rome, do as the Romans do' .. i followed.
I actually had to push thru a crowd to take a shot like this. Yep, i managed to see that 'caged' box thingie we see in anime where u throw coins into. Just missing the bell with the rope attached. Beyond this box u could see people praying in another room inaccessible to public
After throwing my coins and double clapping and praying for a better year, i finally got into the inner areas of the temple, filled with stalls, stuff, and lots of people!
Excited to take more pictures .. and then finding my friends .. i was thinking .. where is that luck drawing area. I usually see it in anime .. until ..
Yep, i found it. But the procedure went like this ..
Shake that hexagon shaped box, a stick with a number on it comes out, pick ur numbered drawer to receive ur paper.
On the back of this paper, it mentioned something like "all will come to he who waits" with half luck written. Well, i am a very patient person so yeah .. i can wait ..
after tying my paper luck thingie onto a 'fence' .. i started taking more pictures
and yep, it was infested with people. Unlike most Malaysian customs where u can hear prayers all over .. all i could hear were the stall owners and festive people.
so many types of food and souvenirs could be bought from the stalls. I didnt buy anything as i was being nourished by the megaBITES from my DSLR
for some reason, this appealed to me. This arrangement of lanterns was new to me.
Taking pictures of the nearby statues, to be sure i didnt angered anyone or any gods/deities, i asked a nearby cop to see if it was ok to take pics. Unlike Malaysia, the Japanese are pretty cool with u taking pics.
Very similar to Buddhism of Malaysia, the difference? U r able to take pictures here without paying a fee.
I took this one, because i didnt expect ppl to dress up the statues, i assumed it was just some joke in anime
Now this one looked pretty spooky, not that i believe i would get cursed or something if i peeked into that little hut.
The season was winter and it didnt snow. Japanese temples give off a very natural with plants vibe. From where i come from, temples feel like a shopping mall. Concrete all over.
After all the blessings, the eating (by my friends) and the picture taking (all me and alone, sometimes i was left by the group LOL) .. walking out wasnt so bad as the crowd rush only happens very close to midnight.
Couldnt resist and be a goof .. in Japan, unlike some TV shows stereotyping, the doorways are pretty tall. Unless u have the height of 185+cm, then yeah thats more to ur own genetic problem. LOL