Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Yoyogi Park

After our visit to Meiji Shrine, we visited Yoyogi Park.  Yoyogi is a very large park in Tokyo.  The timing of our visit was fortunate in two ways.  First, the sakura was still blooming in many parts of the park, making for lovely viewing and some nice photo opportunities.  Secondly, we were lucky because we visited on Sunday; the day many Japanese flock to the park.

The sakura had already fallen from the trees near the entrance of the park, but as we walked in deeper, the trees lining the path were full of the beautiful cherry blossoms.  What the entrance of the park did have, however, was several people practicing some weapons based martial arts.


The park was pretty full, but it didn't feel overly crowded.  People were picnicking under the trees, sitting on blue plastic tarps.  I'm not sure if they sell the tarps in any other color, but I think every single one looked the same.  In some places, you could not see the ground at all due to the blue tarps.


I get the impression that Yoyogi park is a place where people can cut loose a bit.  During our travels, the overwhelming majority of Japanese people were dressed in black, dark blue or white.  In Yoyogi park, people dressed a bit more daring, and some younger people even sported some unusual hair cuts.  Not only did the people dress more colorful, so did the dogs.  There were many people walking their dogs in the park, and more than a handful of them had dressed up their pooches.  One couple even pushed their two small canines around in a stroller.


Yoyogi Park was a place that I could have spent an entire Sunday people watching; it was really quite enjoyable.  The one downside was that if you were female, and had to go to the bathroom, the line was quite long by the mid-afternoon.  After we ate, I walked Nalin over to the bathroom while Tim, Jacob and Aleena finished eating.  After about twenty minutes, she was near the front of the line when Tim called, telling me that Aleena had to desperately go to the bathroom.  They hurried over, and Aleena got there just as it was Nalin's turn to go in the stall.  Thirty seconds later and she would have had to either wait in a long line, or go in the men's room.

As we left the park, we saw a couple of street performers doing a mock combat skit.  I didn't think it was all that entertaining, but the kids seemed to like it.  As we made our way back to the subway, there were two western girls dress in anime costumes taking photos with locals and tourists.  



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