Saturday, May 16, 2009

Day 2 (4 May) in Tokyo

I visited Shimo-kitazawa a few years ago in my first trip in Japan and I like the place with its interesting shops and it's easy to move around. The cafes there look inviting too. Shimo-kitazawa was a place we had to visit while in Tokyo.

To get to Shimo-kitazawa, we took the JR train from Ikebukuro to Shibuya and switched to the Keio Inokashira line. After browsing around the shops, raving about the nice/cute stuff in some shops (such as T-Four) and buying them, we were hungry and started hunting for a place for our lunch. In the end, we settled for okonomiyaki. Our cousin ordered a beef one,
I had natto one

while sis had a pork cutlet and cheese version.

We found the servings huge and couldn't finish our food.

After lunch, we went in search for Cateriam, a cat cafe. I read about it in kuro.shiro.neko's blog and the cats sound adorable. We managed to find it at another side of the train station and it was above this shop called Jean-Mate. Cousin left her name and contact number with the Cateriam staff who would call her when there were available space for us. We browsed at another interesting shop we found (called Communication Mania) and Sis and I bought more stuff.

The entry fee to Cateriam is 1,000Yen per person for an hour, inclusive of a drink. We ordered ice tea and some fruit juices.

This cat was checking out the shoes, the toys before settling down in a clay bowl and dozing off.

Its sleeping companion :)

Other sleepy heads at different times during our visit were on the shelf,

on the comfy cushion,

under the table,

at the area where we the visitors are required to wash our hands before touching the cats,

in front of the book featuring the cat itself.

This girl looks adorable awake or sleeping.

There was a nice big black cat that Sis and I were attracted to. His name is Zero. I like his big eyes. One moment he was resting on Sis' bags and dozing off.

Then he was walking around or following the Cateriam staff. At one time, he was also high up at one corner of the cafe.

Next, he was briefly in a basket near our table. I like his eyes.

Only once were 2 of the cats curious about the drinks of the other visitors.

The staff would occasionally play with the cats and the cats would spring into action.
Some, like this cat, entertained themselves.

The visitors respected the cats and would quietly watch them play, play with them or take photos of them.

It was an interesting way to spend an afternoon in Tokyo. I felt myself missing my cats back home.

Cat cafes are popular in Tokyo as some of the Japanese who like cats could not keep cats/pets in their apartments. We saw another cat cafe in another part of Shimo-kitazawa. Peeping through the glass panels, Cateriam looks more appealing.

When we left Shimo-kitazawa for Jiyugaoka, I started to feel queasy. I wasn't sure if it was because the oily okonomiyaki didn't agree with me or I didn't get enough sleep the past 2 nights (1st was watching movie on plane and 2 hours of sleep and 2nd was cleaning my luggage due to leaking bottle of cough mixture and 4 hours of sleep). I didn't want to spoil the fun for Sis and Cousin, so I was hoping the sick feeling would go away. While Sis and Cousin did some shopping at Uniqlo at Jiyugaoka, I sat at the cushiony seat and closed my eyes. Cousin suggested resting at Sweet Forest, a place where cake/pastry shops come together and people can order any desserts they want (like our food court but this is a dessert paradise for dessert lovers). Once we reached there, I quickly went to the toilet to puke. I felt much better after that and had some oolong tea while they had strawberry tart and strawberry shortcake. I didn't take photos at that time, so I can't show you Sweet Forest and the cakes. At the same building, there was a interesting shop called Cuoco selling baking equipment and ingredients.

We didn't have dinner with Cousin and Cousin-in-law due to my condition. On the way back, we saw a statue with a cat on top of it at Ikebukuro station and people were taking photos and trying to touch it.

By then, I was well enough to check out the convenience stores near our hotel to get bread for breakfast the next day :)


Nausicaa said...

hmmm...wonder what the cat statue was about. maybe something religious since theyw ere all trying to touch it.

D said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dawn said...

I hope you got better and were able to enjoy the rest of the trip!