Friday, June 09, 2006

Tokyo on the cheap ... in Asakusa

A writer for the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune describes his shoestring-budget trip to Tokyo.

He ended up staying in the Asakusa district, which was Tokyo's main entertainment district in the old days. After the war, the action shifted to new, modern districts like Ginza and Shibuya.

I was in Tokyo last year and made it a point to visit Asakusa. The old-style atmosphere there was great. I especially liked the Sensoji.

While strolling through Asakusa, the family and I stopped at a funky, run-down-looking little shop nearly called Yoshinoya. No, not that Yoshinoya, but the place in the picture below. The wife and kids slurped kakigori (shaved ice) while I had a nice cold beer with the gragarious and chatty owner. The shop looked about a hundred years old, as if the wind from a passing car would knock it over. But that was part of its charm. If you're ever in the neighborhood, do stop by. And tell Mr. Yoshino that Mellow Monk sent you.

—Mellow Monk

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