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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

All in a line

The Japanese' life (or at least those in Tokyo) is based entirely around waiting. Or to be more specific, queueing. They queue for everything, happily and for hours on end. As such they make crazy electronics built solely to relieve the boredom of waiting in line. It's an entire industry.

This was pressed home to us yesterday at Tokyo Disneyland*. I saw a kid with a Nintendo DS. "What kind of kid takes a video game to Disneyland?", I thought. A very smart one it turns out. With lines reaching over 70mins, the people who brought portable consumer electronics were kings.

*yeah I sold out and went to Disneyland, what of it?

Naturally, as they queue all the time, the Japanese tend to be experts at queueing. There is ususally someone telling you where to queue and when. At Disneyland this was definitely the case. They also ensured that every quese was the same length and that NO ONE COULD CUT
IN! I loved that. We were waiting for a parade and space next to us came free, the attendant asked how many of us there were, and then shuffled us across while another person shooed away line-cutters. Hooray for oppressive regimes!

Akihabara was a mix of the beautiful and the bizarre as orgistic hordes of otaku descended on electronics. Shinjuku has glittering towers filled with sneering hipsters and the redlight district usuals. So today we tried Asakusa for a revered temple and shrine. It was filled with tourists.

Please excuse the fact that these posts have becomre more and more haphazard but that is the problem with running between internet cafes. Photos are coming, I swear! Tonight I hope to find a kiwi-friendly bar and watch the Tall Blacks play Japan.

Thank you to the anonymous tipster, I haven't tried Melon Soda and Calpis yet, but I will.

READERS: Any help with wifi hotspots around Ueno would also be greatly appreciated.

1 comment:

Tom said...

Queuing, eh? Wait 'til you get to London!