It’s that time of year again when stores start putting out the rain boots and umbrellas, you can hear the frogs croaking out in the rice paddies, and hydrangeas are abloom! June through early July means rain and humidity, and the rainy season can really put a damper on things if you’re not prepared.
Especially if you’re a wife in Japan like me, even doing things like laundry or hanging out the futons can become a monumental task when you can never catch a weekend where they won’t get soaked hanging outside. But don’t worry- keep reading on for some tips on how not to keep the rainy season from becoming a total wash.
Even if you’ve never been to a Disney theme park before, I recommend going to Tokyo Disneyland at least once. One thing is for certain, if you’ve ever visited Japan for any significant amount of time, you know that Japanese people love them some Disney. As proof of this, Tokyo Disneyland is visited by more people annually than both original parks in the U.S. and any other franchise park in the world. Why is Disney so popular here? Sadly I’ve yet to unlock that mystery, because neither Mr. J nor I are big Disney fans. Still, when Mr. J got us a free pair of Disneyland tickets for renewing his life insurance plan we decided not to waste the opportunity for a nice date, and so at the end of May we found ourselves on a bus bound for Tokyo Disneyland.
I’ve held a regular drivers license in Japan for years, but because Mr. J and I have yet to seriously consider buying a car, a used scooter my previous company expensed for me to drive had been my main mode of transportation going on seven plus years. Then a few months ago I’d been having trouble getting the engine to start, and finally last week I decided to bite the bullet and say goodbye to my little companion. This left me in need of a new (used) scooter and a way to somehow give up the old one, preferably all under the budget of 80,000 yen ($800 USD). And so my quest for a new ride began, which I decided to document for anyone else who is looking to buy their first scooter or another one secondhand.
I heard Gabrielle Aplin was coming to Japan and playing a few gigs, and it worked out that I was able to schedule an appointment at a clinic not too far away from where she was playing on the same day to have a reason to take off work and go. It was my first time attending a concert put on by Tokyo Billboard Live, located inside the Tokyo Midtown center in Roppongi, and booking information was a little vague. There also weren’t really any pictures of the venue set up on the official site, and a Google search for other blog posts with detailed info on Tokyo Billboard came up empty. So for my future reference and maybe for someone else down the line, here’s a how-to with my take on the venue and show.