First Impressions: by Monica Hilliard

When I pictured Tokyo, I pictured the cityscapes I’ve seen in movies like Lost in Translation and, let’s be honest, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift. I imagined a, loud, urban jungle with skyscrapers, crowded streets, and bright flashing lights. While parts of Tokyo are certainly all of these things, I have been struck by how serene, clean, and green it is!

We have only been here for one full day, so my first impressions could be proven wrong, but I love what I have seen so far! The peace and quiet are truly amazing. Cars don’t sputter or groan, and I have yet to hear them honk. People are aware and respectful of their surroundings, keeping conversations to a low level. There have been no sirens or blaring music. No barking dogs or screaming children. Even the noisier areas have hidden alleyways and side streets to escape down. Plus, Tokyo is clean! People take garbage disposal and recycling very seriously, with noticeable results. Streets are almost completely free of litter.

Tokyo is also incredibly lush. I was so pleasantly surprised by all of the beautiful green spaces. Parks, small and large, are everywhere, and trees line the streets. We even saw an office building with an entire side covered in a vertical garden. I’m looking forward to exploring more of these places in the coming days!

 

A serene looking Tokyo at sunset.

A serene looking Tokyo at sunset.

A Shinto shrine in Asakusa, Tokyo

A Shinto shrine in Asakusa, Tokyo

The bright lights of Tokyo at night.

The bright lights of Tokyo at night.

A typical Japanese restaurant and where we ate our first night.

A typical Japanese restaurant and where we ate dinner our first night in Tokyo.

 

 

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