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Tokyo Shopping

July 8, 2011

I have to apologize, as I’ve been too busy to storyboard the Hong Kong pix to be able to post up anything coherent.  Normally what is done is the photos are collected and arranged by the story they tell – the narrative is a filler providing the sounds and smells, so to speak, of the experience.

Since this isn’t complete, we’ll take you on a photo tour of our shopping experience in Tokyo.

As mentioned before, when we hit a new place, we tend to wander fairly aimlessly the first day so as to get a feel for the place.  We did this in Tokyo, wandering the Shinjuku district.  We headed towards Shinjuku Station, figuring if there were shops to be seen – they’d be there.  We weren’t disappointed.

Tokyo shopping is alien to Western sensibilities on three fronts.  First – even the largest of shopping malls is divided into individual shops the size of a master bedroom.  The above pic is from just one such place.  Think high-end flea market, and you get the general idea.

Second, the footprint of any one shopping area is quite small; the solution is to go up.  It’s not uncommon for a shop to have 6-8 floors arranged like departments.

This is a watch shop – 7 floors of watches ranging from $3 for 10 all the way to $30,000.  If you can’t find it here – you’re chronometrically  impaired.

Third – and this is the part which got to me – the place is a full-frontal assault on one’s senses.

You can barely make out the bikes behind the signage.

Our eldest daughter wanted Kaiju, or monsters as her travel gift.  We entered a six story store filled with everything – and I mean everything.    Toe socks?  Check.  Refrigerators?  Check.  Devices to give lonely young women pleasure?  Ask the Pheebs about that.

It wasn’t that they had it all – rather it was the merchandising which took this place over the top.

The entire store was like this.

Yes, that’s the Pheebs amidst the chaos.

It wasn’t just the clutter – there was NOISE!

Every few feet, there would be a little LCD screen screaming, literally SCREAMING at us to buy or DIE!!!  This is a Ab Blaster display – as near I I could tell…

Even the bra selection freaked out the Pheebs.

The assault was intense to the point of vertigo – so we left.

It took a day to recover from exposure to shopping porn.

Thus chastened, we went to a camera store (!?) and were able to find kaiju on the 3rd floor.  Plastic monsters in a camera shop?

Go figure.

That was a bit much for us.  I think we’ll stick to photographing the sights from here on out.

That’s more like it!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jack Riepe permalink
    July 8, 2011 9:42 pm

    Dear Chuck:

    This has me astounded… Assuming one didn’t have hours to sift through the stuff, how could you refine your search in all this madness?

    Fondest regards,
    Twisted Roads

    • dangerboyandpixie permalink*
      July 8, 2011 9:51 pm


      The short answer – we didn’t. It was claustrophobic, noisy and an absolute assault on one’s sensibilities. I literally began to get dizzy; the only thing which brought me back to reality was the display of personal pleasure products for the young ladies. Ergonomically designed and in soft pastels, they looked all the world like beauty products.

      I brought the Pheebs over to check them out – that broke the trance, and we were able to escape from the terror of a Japanese Wal-Mart crammed into a dorm room.

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