All tagged travel to Japan

Tokyo is the World's Coolest City. 12 reasons why . . .

1. The culture of cleanliness

Everybody I talked to asked me to be prepared for the sheer number of people in Tokyo. I was ready for the crowds . . . what I didn't expect was the cleanliness. This, despite the fact that there is no trash can in open sight anywhere in the city.  You will be hard-pressed to come across a city as clean as Tokyo—Japanese people carry the trash in their hands, their pockets, or a spare plastic bag until they arrive at their destination. Alternatively, you can duck into a convenience store (which abound in the city) and dispose of your garbage there.

2. The world's most efficient railway system

Tokyo's extensive public transportation system carries 40 million daily passengers. With 13 subway lines and more than 100 surface routes run by Japan railways and other private companies, Tokyo's railway system is beyond sophisticated. With its operating speed reaching up to 320km/h, the bullet train is a rite of traveler passage in Tokyo!

A Date with a Geisha. . .

My writing instructor, Teresa brings out a tray of objects hoping that in one of these randomly-picked items, we will find our inspiration to write.

Among the clutter of 16 crayons, a yellow 'No Crossing Tape,' a plastic Barbie doll with pink highlighted hair, an American flag, a folding umbrella, a soft stitch training baseball, a silver figurine of a hippo, a grey-and-white inhaler, a blue $50 Monopoly money bill—my eyes alight and focus on a silk hand fan with ribs that come to long points at one end and a green silk tassel attached by a braided green cord at the other. It lies unfolded, displaying an arc of heavy rice gold paper, hand-painted with blue irises on leafy green stalks. Memories of the orient are slicing through my brain like a machete and it reminds me of an embellished fan in the hands of a geisha.

Years ago my husband and I read the book 'Memoirs of a Geisha' together on a holiday to Maui,