Yoyogi National Olympic Memorial Youth Center, Tokyo and Shin-Yokohama Japan


Youth Hostel at Yoyogi National Olympic Memorial Center, Tokyo plus Shin-Yokohama
I set off early and found my way there from Yoyogi station by walking around Meiji Jingu. It was pattering with rain and people had their clear film umbrellas up. Groups of children were having lunch near the river and people in karate clothes roamed the area, thanks to a karate school nearby. I got through the other side and rang Australia on my mobile.

After walking around the streets I eventually found the Tokyo Yoyogi Youth Hostel. Once again the map tells you exactly where something is but is completely useless for showing you how to get to it. The hostel is on one side of the park but there is a very high fence concealing it so you can't be sure you're in the right place. And, guess what! The entrance is on the other side of the park!

So, through the gate into the National Olympic Memorial Center, past several guards who greet you as you go in, past several buildings and up several levels to the admistration office. Thanks to a nice lady at information who gave me a map of the area with a big arrow pointing to the location of the office.

It was easy to book and I looked up the exact location of the hostel. Several blocks on the left, by the look of it. 

After registering I found a cafe in the building and had a curry wrap and a couple of pastries for 600 yen.

Then it was off to meet Alan and watch one of his classes. Unfortunately I didn't realise it would take 50 minutes to get to Aodabai believing it was close. So, once again, I missed the appointment time due to lack of information.

I walked up and down several streets, asking in at some buildings and looking about others. I eventually gave up and went to Wendy's and ordered a burger, such was my disappointment with the situation.

Alan contacted me, between lessons, and informed me that I'd walked down the wrong road! Heyyyy? Honto?

So, I finished my burger and found the place. I spoke with the receptionist about her wanting to teach Japanese. Then I sat in on Alan's class. He is very good with the kids and certainly has an affinity for teaching children.

We then headed to a place near Yokohama to a community hall where we met two new students. While the two children were basic beginners in the first class, these two students were adults and talked about their holidays.

After that we went to the nearby department store. This was a real department store with actual shops with doors, unlike the Rox department store in Asakusa which features several levels of doorless market-like shops spread out across the floors.

We went to a sweets shop that sold gummy penguins, chewy soldiers, crunchy dog bones and a wide assortment of confectionary that I hadn't seen before. Bought about 600 yen worth then headed to a restaurant with plastic food in the windows.

There were only two shops that didn't have plastic food in the window. The Indian curry shop - because the food would look like vomit in a bowl if they did it, and McDonalds, which sold plastic food anyway!

Just like most pictures in menus do not represent the food that you get, most plastic food in the windows don't show what you get, even to the point of a major feature like a prawn cutlet not actually being part of your meal.

So the plastic food is just a guide. Try and read the Japanese description for further information.

Afterwards it was back on the train, back to Asakusa and back to the hostel. I did some more internet work, searching for a hotel room then went to bed. Checking out tomorrow.

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