After climbing nearly 270 steps to reach the Tian Tan Buddha and hiking around in high elevation, my single serving friend and I parted ways for the evening. I opted to go to the Tsim Sha Tsui district on my own, despite having been warned by coworkers not to wander certain areas at night...perhaps not the wisest of choices, but since I'm nearly 6 feet tall and have rarely ever been "messed" with, even walking through some of the shadier neighbourhoods in Vegas, I felt confident exploring on my own, even in a country I was only just getting the feel of. Besides, I'd read that this was a good area to do some shopping in and having already wandered nearby the prior evening, I decided to go for it!
No harm no foul, aside from the damage to my wallet after spending some of my hard earned salary on new goods and some dinner. I found a chunky black sweater with lime green threads woven throughout in a texture I love, an item that I still adore and plan to take with me to Seoul soon, for roughly $6 US. SIX DOLLARS! Brand new, no less! The only time I found sweaters that cheap in Japan was when I bought them at thrift stores like my beloved Kinji in Harajuku. Another store that I stumbled upon and loved was House of Chapel on Granville road, a shop with a creepy surreal vibe and affordable yet stylish, minimalist clothing, much of which I still wear frequently.
For dinner, I stopped in a small noodleshop not far from my hotel. I ordered a bowl with a whole pig foot suspended atop the broth, along with some sautéed veggies for some freshness. It was delicious, though I found the smooth plastic chopsticks to be a bit of a challenge to use- when an elderly gentleman who worked in the shop came to my aid. Though we didn't speak each other's language, he gently tapped my hand and demonstrated how to better hold my chopsticks for maximum grip, reducing my struggles to lift the cruciferous forms to my face. After satisfying himself that he'd helped this poor girl feed herself properly, he gave me a wink and dropped a pair of the restaurant's chopsticks into my shopping bags, a finger pressed to his lip ensuring this was our secret.
Thanks, kind stranger! Funny how throughout an entire year and a half in Japan not one person ever critiqued my chopstick skills, which weren't abysmal but certainly not as dexterous as someone who'd been using them since childhood. In fact, many of my Japanese friends had at some point positively remarked on my ability to use chopsticks, perhaps artificially inflating my sense of skill. I sincerely doubt it was done with malicious intent; more so a way of making small talk during a meal. Still, I wonder how they'd feel if Americans perpetually pointed out their prowess with a fork during meals. :P Sometimes it's the little things, you know?
After a lovely and informative meal, I made my way back to the hotel to rest and prepare for the next day!
More photos after the cut.
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