Welcome to Day 2 of Janet and Randy's Japan Adventure 2017
Friday, April 7th, 2017
As we had crossed the international date line, it was now Friday afternoon when we arrived at Narita airport. When we got off the plane, we were met by Shiori - the Air Canada concierge. We had met her on our last trip to Tokyo a year ago. She walked us to customs, but again, there is no fast-pass lane for business class passengers at Narita. And it was busy again this time - but it wasn't as bad as it was last time we arrived - and the air conditioning was working this time so the immigration hall was a bit cooler. This time we managed to get through within about half an hour.
We had a bit of a hold-up going through customs as Randy had filled out his customs card using a pen with green ink. Apparently that is not acceptable, so he had to fill out another card. I had meanwhile already gone through a different customs agent and was wondering what was taking him so long. Once in the customs hall, not to be confused with the immigration hall, there seemed to be a number of dogs barking, and not small dogs either.
After getting out of customs, we went to get tickets for the Limousine Bus. There was a bit of a line-up, and we were hoping to get tickets for one right away. However, we had just missed a bus heading to the hotel, and had to wait another 45 minutes for the next one. While we were waiting for the bus, Randy hopped on the airport wifi to check Facebook. He noticed on his Facebook feed that some people we met on a food tour in Istanbul 2 years ago (Charlene and Lionel) were were also arriving in Tokyo the same day. Randy sent a note off to them letting them know that we were in Tokyo as well. Our bus finally arrived, and it then took us an hour to get to the Imperial Hotel.
We were able to check in right away and the bell boy took us and the luggage up to our room. Because the hotel was booked up, we had to book into a Superior room for the first 2 nights, and then move to a Standard room for the rest of our stay. The superior room was in the main building - but unlike the upgraded room we had last time, this room did not include the upgraded amenities and the free breakfast/Happy Hour. So, that was a bit disappointing (especially when the rate for these 2 nights were not cheap!). Also, the view wasn't that great - as we looked directly into a big black office building. Oh well. Apparently the rate that gets the amenities is more than what we pay. I'm sure for the difference in the rate, I can go out and find a breakfast solution.
We unpacked our stuff, and then decided to head over to Bic Camera to get some data SIM cards for our iPhones. When we walked out of the hotel, the first thing we noticed was that our favourite restaurant - Sushi Zanmai - was no longer there! We had nick-named this place Tuna-riffic, as it had amazing sushi. Completely flabbergasted. But, it was gone! We were very heart-broken about that. We continued on to Bic Camera and got our phones configured for the SIM cards and then headed back in the direction of our hotel.
Randy was starting to feel a little hungry, so we decided to stop at a ramen soup place that we had eaten at last time we were in Tokyo. This was a place where you used a kiosk to order and pay for your food and then gave the tickets produced to a waitress. Once the food was ready, the waitress brought the food to the table. The food came out quickly, and it was just as good as we remembered. Comfort food !
After we were finished, we went back to the hotel. We were both pretty tired by this time, so we headed to bed and were asleep by around 9:00pm (or 6am from where we just came from... so that was a very, very long day)
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