Doraemon & Crayon Shin-chan’s TV network, TV Asahi and Its Show Exhibition


TV Asahi Corporation (株式会社テレビ朝日) is a Japanese TV network headquartered in the Roppongi district of Tokyo. The TV network has been broadcasting and distributing some popular Japanese TV anime series such as Doraemon, Crayon Shin-chan, and Sailor Moon (aired in 1992-1997). All of them are my favorite TV anime series in my childhood (especially Sailor Moon truly fascinated me with its fantastic and romantic story and a variety of beautiful girl warriors on the show).

About a month ago, I happened to visit the headquarter building of TV Asahi when I was wandering around the area of Roppongi Hills (one of the largest integrated property developments of Japan). TV Asahi’s building was right next to the Roppongi Hills and the name, ‘Asahi’ made me curious about the TV network and its building as it reminded me of the world famous Japanese beer ‘Asahi’ (it turned out Asahi beer and TV Asahi are not related to each other :))

Location of TV Asahi’s building

On the 1st floor of the TV Asahi’s building, there was the exhibition of TV shows aired and distributed by TV Asahi. Admission to this exhibition was free!

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Movie information board near the entrance of TV Asahi building

A cute panda mascot was welcoming me near the entrance of the exhibit. He is a mascot of TV Asahi, and his name is ‘Go-Chan’.

Go-chan's statue welcoming visitors
Go-chan’s statue welcoming visitors

Although there were not many things to see like an anime museum in the exhibition, it was fun to go around the place and take some commemorative photographs in photo shoot spots in there.

Below are pictures of Doraemon exhibit. For more information about Doraemon, go to this post -> “Doraemon”, a Cat Robot Does Not Have Ears?

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Doraemon statue in TV Asahi’s building

And below is Crayon Shin-chan photo shoot spot.

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Crayon Shin-chan display for photo shoot

In addition to displays of anime series, there were also displays of famous talk show & comedy show in Japan aired by TV Asahi. Below are the pictures of them. Though the dolls of celebrities here were little creepy to me.

Always, looking around a souvenir shop is part of the fun of tour. After seeing the exhibition, I visited a souvenir store near the entrance of the exhibition. The store was selling TV Asahi’s TV shows related goods. Below are photos taken from the store. I wish I could buy everything in the store!

Doraemon Goods

Doraemon belly band could be a fun souvenir. It seemed very useful, too. It had a pocket on it like the real Doraemon’s belly :).

Sailor Moon Goods

I thought Sailor Moon socks and Sailor Moon pens would make pretty good souvenirs. But I was just sad to realize that I was too old to use them in my daily life lol.

 Crayon Shin-chan Goods

I ended up buying a cute ‘Buri Buri Jaemon (a pig hero created by Shin-chan)’ tissue box cover here.

Below are images of my souvenir from TV Asahi’s building.

Thank you for reading my post!

-Dr.Mouse-

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Doraemon Warm Wool Belly Band

Crayon Shin Chan: Season 1

Moon Stick “Sailor Moon”

“Doraemon”, a Cat Robot Does Not Have Ears?


Doraemon (image from http://www.japantimes.co.jp)
Doraemon (image from http://www.japantimes.co.jp)

If you ever wondered about this interesting character with a blue & white body and a huge cat-like face, here is about who he is.

Doraemon is a Japanese manga & anime series (the original manga series is written and drawn by Fujiko F. Fujio).

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Doraemon and his friends. An edited English dub distributed by TV Asahi aired on Disney XD in the U.S. ( from on July 7, 2014) (image from http://www.watchcartoononline.com)

The story revolves around a cat-like robot named Doraemon sent by a boy from the future to the present day to helps his great-great grandfather named Nobita Nobi improve his miserable life that way his descendants may have better life in the future. Doraemon helps Nobita solve his endless daily problems with using special tools from the future.

Nobita (left) and Doraemon (right) (image from http://www.photoscartoon.com)
Nobita (left) and Doraemon (right) (image from http://www.photoscartoon.com)

Doraemon has become one of the best-selling manga in the world (sold over 100 million copies) and Doraemon was described as “The Cuddliest Hero in Asia” on April 2002, on TIME Magazine.

Doraemon, the cat robot, has a face of cat (and amazingly, more than half of his body is his head! lol) and is wearing a cat bell collar. You might wonder why Doraemon does not have cat ears (or at least any kind of ears…). That is because a robot mouse ate his ears when he was in asleep. The original color of Doraemon in the story was yellow; however, because Doraemon cried too much after the loss of his ears, the yellow color painted with an ‘egg yolk’ was washed away by tears. Because of that incident, a mouse has become the animal which Doraemon is the most afraid of. Doraemon’s favorite food is one of traditional Japanese sweets, ‘dorayaki’ which name is similar to the name of Doraemon (dorayaki is called yummy bun in Doraemon presented by Disney XD).

Doraemon has a special pocket called ‘4-dimensional pocket’, on his belly. From the pocket, he takes out various special tools from the future, which every kids in the world might ever want to have. As Doraemon presents new tools or gadgets in almost every episode, there are 1963 tools in manga series and 2332 tools in anime series. The tools that Doraemon uses the most are ‘bamboo-copter (a bamboo dragon fly that allows you fly)’, ‘anywhere door (a door can take you anywhere you want to be), and ‘(hand) air canon (a weapon gives enemies a little shock).’

Doraemon with bamboo copter on his head
Doraemon with a ‘bamboo copter’ on his head (image from http://www.reddit.com )

As Doraemon is loved by people in the world, you can see various Doraemon character goods all over the world now (especially in Japan :)). There are even Doraemon credit cards!

Below are pictures of some Doraemon goods in the character good store of TV Asahi’s building. For more information about TV Asahi’s building, go to this post ->Doraemon & Shin-chan’s TV network, TV Asahi and Its TV shows Exhibition

Thank you for reading my post!
-Dr.Mouse-

References

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Doraemon Comic Book, Vol. 1 (English Version)

Doraemon Action Figure

Doraemon Warm Wool Belly Band

Doraemon Lunch Boxes

AbenobeA (Abeno bear), a Cute Bear Mascot of Abeno Harukas


Let me present a cute and special bear character to you.

This is AbenobeA (あべのべあ)!

AbenobeA (abenobear)
AbenobeA (Abeno bear) (image from http://www.abenoharukas-300.jp/en/)

AbenobeA(あべのべあ) is the mascot of Abeno Harukas. Abeno Harukas is Osaka’s new landmark built in 2014. For more information about Abeno Harukas, go to this post -> Abeno Harukas, Osaka’s New Landmark

The name of the mascot is very interesting in several ways if you know basic Japanese. Although Abeno (あべの) is originally name of some area in Osaka, it can also literally mean ‘- of Abe(あべ)’ or ‘Abe’s -.’ And In Japanese, be-a (あべ) means bear. So AbenobeA can literally mean ‘Abe’s bear’. The name is especially funny to the Japanese because ‘Abe’ is also first name of the prime minister of Japan, ‘Abe Shinjo’. So, it sounds like ‘prime minister Abe’s bear’. Below is the picture of AbenobeA shaking hands with prime minister ‘Abe’. You can see people are chuckling in the picture. Yep, they got the joke 🙂

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‘Abe’nobeA (literally can mean Abe’s bear) shaking hands with prime minister ‘Abe’

You can see this picture in the main gift shop(58F) of Abeno Harukas.

One more fun thing about the name, AbenobeA is the name in Japanese, あべのべあ can be read in the same way in any direction. From the front it can be read あべのべあ, and also from the back, can be read あべのべあ.

Sorry for the long explanation about the name of AbenobeA, I guess only the Japanese or Japanese learners can get the joke about the name Xp.

This bear character is special because unlike other bear characters, its body is colored like blue sky with clouds.

AbenobeA (abenobear)
AbenobeA again

All of below pictures of AbenobeA goods were taken in several gift shops of Abeno Harukas’s observatory.

There are also AbenobeA colored with different skies such as sky with stars, rainy sky, and red sunset.

Gift shops of Abeno Harukas’s observatory (especially the main gift shop on 58F) had a variety of cute AbenobeA goods including dolls, accessories, and candies.

Click pictures below for seeing full sized pictures.

Sadly, AbenobeA goods are only available at Abeno Harukas in Osaka :'( So when you visit Osaka, don’t forget to stop by Abeno Harukas!!! 😀

Below is the picture of my souvenir from Abeno Harukas. The sky-themed bear doll looks even prettier on the wood-themed floor 🙂

AbenobeA doll
AbenobeA doll

Thank you for reading my post! ♥

-Dr.Mouse-

Abeno Harukas, Osaka’s New Landmark


Last week, my boyfriend and I went to Osaka to visit my Korean aunt and Japanese uncle living in there. Like Tokyo, Osaka was a pretty big city and there were many fun things to do. It took about 2 hours and half to get Osaka station from Tokyo station via Shinkansen, the fastest train in Japan, and it was very nice that we could be able to see Mount Fuji on the way to Osaka 🙂

Mount Fuji seen from shinkansen
Mount Fuji seen from shinkansen

As we arrived Osaka at night and wanted to see night view of Osaka, we decided to go Abeno Harukas, Osaka’s landmark just built in the last year, 2014.

Abeno Harukas is the highest ‘skyscraper’ in Japan (Tokyo Skytree is the highest ‘tower’ in Japan). This building is 300 m (984 ft) tall and has 62 floors. From top to bottom, the building is consist of observatory (58-60F), hotel (19F,20F, 38-55F, 57F), office floors (17F,18F, 21-36F), art museum (16F), department store(B2-14F), and Kintetsu Osaka-Abeno station (B2F, 1F).


location of Abeno Harukas

According to Abeno Harukas’s official website, “Harukas” is an old Japanese expression meaning “to brighten, to clear up.” Name implies that visitors can enjoy clear view of Osaka from the building. ‘Abeno’ is the name of some area of Osaka where the building is located.

Tickets for Abeno Harukas
Tickets for Abeno Harukas

Admission for each adult costs 1500 yens (about 13 dollars). Ticket counters are on 2F and 16F. On 16F, you can take an elevator to observatory on 60F.

Below are night views from Abeno Harukas. From this building, you can see almost every famous tourist spots in Osaka such as Osaka Castle and Tsutenkaku, landmark tower in Osaka.

*Here is a tip for Osaka trip: As Abeno Harukas is the highest building of Osaka, you can see it from every tourist spots in Osaka. Therefore, you can use the skyscraper for finding direction. The building has shape of stairs and south part of it is the highest. So the direction that highest part of the building is facing is south.

From 60F, you can look down into ‘Sky Garden’. This is an outdoor space with an open roof. You can have a cup of coffee or a meal purchased at a cafe dining bar connected to the garden from inside of the building. The place was not so busy on that day since it was cold winter.

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Sky Garden of Abeno Harukas
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Night view from Sky Garden

Every night, there are shows that lights of beautiful colors illuminate the floor of the garden.

There was a huge elevator looking sculpture on the back part of Sky Garden. People could get in side of it and take interesting pictures in it.

After looking around Sky Garden, we went helipad tour of Abeno Harukas. Ticket can be purchased at information counter on 60 F. Ticket costs 500 yens (about 4 dollars) for each person. You can stay on helipad about half an hour.

Because of strong winds on the helipad, some bags and other accessories might fly away because of wind were not allowed for the tour. I had to take off my hat and backpack and put them in a locker near the entrance of helipad tour.

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bags allowed and not allowed for helipad tour

Below is the helipad! It was my first time to be on helipad, so I was very excited!! You can see the mark of helipad ‘H’ under my feet.

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Me on the helipad

Clicks pictures below for seeing full sized ones.

As the weather was so cold, we came back from the helipad after less than half an hour and headed to gift shop on 58F.

Below are pictures of the gift shop. In the store, there were various cute goods of AbenobeA (Abeno bear), the mascot of Abeno Harukas. OMG they were so cute!!!

For more information about AbenobeA, go to this post -> AbenobeA (Abeno bear), a Cute Bear Mascot of Abeno Harukas

Thank you for reading my post! ♥

-Dr.Mouse-

Have a Kawaii Valentine’s Day!: Cute Mochi (Japanese Rice Cake), Daifuku


Coming Valentine’s Day is going to be my first Valentine’s Day in Japan! I have been working hard on searching for special Valentine’s sweets for my boyfriend who does not like chocolates so much (how can he!!). As I am living in Japan now, the easiest thing I could think of was the ‘mochi’ (Japanese rice cake), particularly, ‘daifuku’.

Daifuku is a small round-shaped mochi stuffed with sweet filling. The most common is white-, pale green-, or pale pink-colored mochi filled with ‘anko’, sweetened red bean paste. In Japan, there are many kinds of daifuku with various colors and fillings, and they are popular gifts or souvenirs among the Japanese.

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Picture of common daifuku (“Daifuku 1”. Licensed under CC BY 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons)

For people who want to give their valentines special sweets other than chocolate or other common candies on Valentine’s Day, daifuku can also make a good sweet.

Below are pictures of daifuku I found in some Japanese sweet stores on first floor of Daimaru department store which is directly connected to Tokyo Station. Here is the location of the building.

A pale pink-colored daifuku in the picture below is one of ‘ichigo daifuku’, which is stuffed with strawberry and sweet filing. This daifuku’s name is ‘Ichigo-anju’ which means strawberry (ichigo) red bean (an) pearl (ju).

strawberry mochi
an ‘Ichigo-anju’ with straberry and red bean filling

For your information, most ichigo daifuku contain whole pieces of strawberry like the one in the below picture.

A ichigo daifuku with a whole piece of strawberry (cut in half)
An ichigo daifuku(cut in half) with a whole piece of strawberry in it (image from WordPress)

Below are ‘Suikanshuku’ filled with persimmon filling. The name, Suikanshuku means elegant(sui) sweet(kan) soft(shuku).

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‘Suikanshuku,’ mochi filled with persimmon filling

Below are daifuku stuffed with anko and covered with tiny colored rice crackers. The name of daifuku is ‘Shunsaika’ which means spring(shun) plant(sai) flower(ka).

colored mochi
‘Shunsaika’ filled with red bean paste and covered with tiny rice crackers

Below is a picture of Oniyarai Mochi (left) and sushi shaped mochi (right). Oniyarai Mochi, which name means ‘out with the demons’, is filled with red bean paste and covered with powdered sponge cake. These mochi are inspired by Setsubun (the day before the beginning of Spring in Japan). On that day, the Japanese eat soybeans and roll sushi to avoid evils bring bed luck. You can see masks of Japanese demon in this picture, too.

sushi mochi
Oniyarai Mochi (left) and sushi shaped mochi (right)

Below might look like chocolates, but actually they are daifuku covered with red bean paste and stuffed with a whole piece of chestnut. This is interesting daifuku because red bean paste was not used for anko but for cover. The daifuku’s name is ‘Ikoten’ which means ‘to become generous.’ Maybe you can present this daifuku to person you want to be more generous? :p

red bean mochi
‘Ikoten’ covered with red bean paste and stuffed with a whole piece of chestnut

So far, I have shown you some kinds of daifuku (actually there are way more kinds of daifuku in Japan…I will talk more about them later!). What do you think? I hope this post is helpful for you to get an idea for special Valentine’s Day gifts (I am still working on it! >_<).

How about making sweets with red bean paste instead of chocolate for this Valentine’s Day? 🙂

Thank you for reading my post!
-Dr.Mouse-
References

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Japanese Fruits Daifuku (Rice Cake) – strawberry


Mixed Mochi (Red Bean, Peanut, and Sesame)

Japanese Fruits Daifuku Mochi (Rice Cake)- Melon

Tokyo Character Street in First Avenue Tokyo Station!


Today I want to introduce you one of must-go places for whom love Japanese anime and other characters.

The First Avenue Tokyo Station! 😀

Entrance of Tokyo Character Street http://otoiawase.tokyoeki-1bangai.co.jp/en/
Entrance of Tokyo Character Street (Photo from http://otoiawase.tokyoeki-1bangai.co.jp/en/)

First Avenue Tokyo Station is a three-floor commercial establishment which is connected to Yaesu exit of the Tokyo Station (a railway station in Marunouchi District of Tokyo). The establishment has cafes, restaurants (visit Tokyo Ramen Street!), and many shops for sweets, clothing, and character goods. Below is the location of ‘Tokyo Station.’


And this link has a very good map of ‘First Avenue Tokyo Station’. You can print out and use it -> http://www.tokyoeki-1bangai.co.jp/pdf/floorMap_foreign.pdf

Though there are many other attractions that visitors can enjoy in First Avenue Tokyo Station, I visit there mostly for enjoying Tokyo Character Street!

There are many character-specific stores for famous Japanese anime and other characters in the place.

Here is the map of the character street.

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Map of Tokyo Character Street

In this post, I show you some major stores of Tokyo Character Street.

Jump Shop

Kamehameha~~This store has products for well-known Japanese anime such as Dragon Ball, Naruto, and One Piece.

Donguri Garden

This is the place where has goods for Ghibli animes including My Neighbor Totoro, Castle in the Sky, and Princess Mononoke, and Spirited Away). The store has pretty many kinds of character goods, but ‘Donguri Republic’ or Stores in ‘Ghibli Museum’ have more stuff than this store does 🙂 You should visit Ghibli Museum in Tokyo if you love Totoro!

Hello Kitty Shop

You know Hello Kitty right? 🙂 Many kinds of Hello Kitty items are here!

Rilakkuma Store

Rilakkuma means relaxed(rila) bear(kkuma). Like people love teddy bears, bear characters seem to beloved by people all over the world. You can see a variety of goods of cute bear character, Rilakkuma in this store. For more information about this store go to this post! -> Rilakkuma Store in First Avenue Tokyo Station: Cute Rilakkuma Goods are here! 😀

Kyurutto Shop

The store has goods for a character, Kapibara-san (Mr. Kapibara) which is one of my favorite Japanese characters. The character was inspired by a animal ‘capybara’ which is the largest rodent in the world. Though the title ‘a large rodent’ might sound creepy to some people, the animal is actually very cute and sweet enough to beloved by many people.

Pokemon

Pokemon! Even though new seasons of Pokemon keep coming out on TV, I still prefer the oldest one to the others.

Tamagotchi

For people do not know what Tamagotchi is, Tamagotchi is a small toy computer (mostly egg-shaped) which houses digital pets. The name, Tamagotchi is combination of words tamago which means egg in Japanese and watch, the english word. The store reminds me of my childhood playing many Tamagotchis (and I killed many of them. I was a terrible mom :().

Nameko Official Shop

Nameko is also one of my favorite Japanese characters but not very well-known to non-Japanese people. The character was inspired by nameko, one of common mushrooms that the Japanese eat. For more information about Nameko Official shop, visit this post! -> Nameko Official Shop: Fall in Love with This Mushroom Character. And if you want to know more about Nameko as a game character, visit this post, too -> Mushroom Garden(Game) : Let’s Grow Funny and Cute Mushroom, ‘Nameko!’

So far, I showed you some major stores for Japanese character products in Tokyo Character Street. Here I briefly talked about some Japanese characters (sometimes in one sentence lol). But in my other posts, I would love to talk about those characters in detail 😀

Here are my souvenirs from Tokyo Character Street.

Nameko & Kapibara-san
Nameko & Kapibara-san

Thank you for reading my post! Have a great day ~ 😀

References

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Hello Kitty Peel and Stick Wall Decals

Rilakkuma San-X Small Rilakkuma Plush


Pokemon Rare Grabbag – 20 Rare Pokemon Cards

Cute Japanese Chopstick & Chopstick Rest Store, ‘Ginza Nastuno’


In Shin-Marunouchi (new Marunouchi) building near the Tokyo station, I found a very cute chopstick and chopstick rest store. The store’s name was ‘Ginza Natsuno.’ Ginza Natsuno is the best chopstick store in Japan (what a lucky I was! I just happened to visit the store without knowing that). The main branch is in Ginza District of Tokyo. The store’s official website (English) is https://www.e-ohashi.com/shop_en.php. You can check other branches of this store in different locations on this website.


location of Ginza Natsuno, Chiyoda, Tokyo
The store had a variety of beautiful chopsticks and chopstick rests which reminded me of stores in Kyoto city (Kyoto has many stores selling Japanese traditional items).

Ginza Natsuno Chopsticks Store
Ginza Natsuno chopsticks store
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the attractive display of the store drew me into the store.

Below are pictures of chopsticks in the store. I felt like I was in a chopstick museum.

 

Check this out! The chopsticks are decorated with jewels!

Chopsticks decorated with jewels
Chopsticks decorated with jewels

This store made me think about the fact how important chopsticks are to Japanese people. It is said that Japanese people eat almost every kind of food with chopsticks (even though I am from Korea, one of chopsticks using countries, I use a spoon for eating rice and soup), and each Japanese people has personal chopsticks (even family members do not share their chopsticks). Click this link if you want to know more about chopsticks culture of Japan ->http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xnphtf_japan-chopsticks-%E7%AE%B8-%EF%BC%91-tv-begin-japanology-english-japanese-culture_shortfilms

Chopsticks were not only things that I could enjoy in the store. There were many cute chopstick rests and other home decorating items in the store.

Below are the cute chopstick rests. You might want to click the pictures below to see the full size pictures. Trust me, they are so cute!

And other cute decorating items in the store…

Even though there were many cute and beautiful items in the store, one item caught my eyes and actually made me buy it was this.

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This is a miniature display platform of ‘hina dolls,’ the dolls for celebrating a Japanese special day, Hinamatsuri (Doll’s day or Girl’s day).

Below is a picture of the original Hina-dolls. For more information about Hinamatsuri and hina dolls, go to this post -> Girl’s Day in Japan! Hinamatsuri & Hina dolls

HinaSet
“HinaSet” by user:Michaelbuddy – Copy from en.wikipedia

And below are other miniature Hina-doll display platforms in the store. They were also cute, but I thought the rabbit one was the cutest among them.

One more good thing of the store was the staff could speak English 🙂

 

If you love Japanese chopsticks or chopstick rests, visit ‘Ginza Natsuno!’

 

Oh, and these are pictures of my souvenir from the store 😀

Thank you for reading my post!

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Ryu Mei Sakura Black Chopstick


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5 Pairs Japanese Chopsticks Flower & Leaves Design

6pcs Panda Pattern Chopsticks Spoons and Forks Holder

Mini ‘Taiyaki'(Japanese Fish-Shaped Cake)!


For whom did not know what taiyaki is, taiyaki is a Japanese fish-shaped cake. The name taiyaki literally means, Baked(yaki) Sea Bream(Tai). The fish-shaped cake is made of pancake or waffle batter and normally filled with sweetened red bean paste.

“Taiyaki” Photo by Toto-tarou (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiyaki)

Taiyakis I bought in a station in Tokyo are interesting even for Japanese people because they are much smaller than regular taiyakis.

Ochobo taiyaki stand

 

The taiyaki restaurant’s name was ‘Ochobo Taiyaki’

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finger size taiyaki

As you can see, the taiyaki was so small and cute!

A mini taiyaki

Below is a picture that was taken when I made taiyaki in my friend’s home in America. Compare sizes of the mini taiyaki and a regular taiyaki in the picture 🙂

Original taiyaki

In addition to mini taiyakis which were filled with red bean paste, there were taiyakis with other fillings such as caramel, chocolate, cheese, custard, and sausage. So, people who do not like red bean paste can also enjoy the mini taiyaki! 🙂 One more special thing about the taiyaki was the bread was made of croissant dough unlike other taiyakis made of pancake or waffle batter.

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A picture of different types of mini taiyaki

Here are the prices of the taiyaki sets (without tax). You can buy 10 taiyakis (about $5), 14 taiyakis (about $6), and 20 taiyakis (about $9) sets and choose any filling for each taiyaki. I bought a 14 taiyaki set with taikakis of every kinds of fillings.

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Prices of mini taiyaki sets

A staff at the stand put my taiyaikis in this cute paper back below.

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A paper back with taiyakis in it

Because the taiyakis were made of croissant dough, it was crispy outside and soft inside of the taiyaki like a croissant bread.

Pictures below show the inside of the taiyakis with different fillings.

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A mini taiyaki with chocolate filling
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A mini taiyaki with melt cheese in it
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A mini taiyaki with sausage in it

They all were so tasty! I personally liked the taiyaki with cheese filling the most which was so creamy 🙂

You can buy the taiyaki near Ikebukuro station in the Ikebukuro District of Tokyo. As this store is very known to people, you can not find the store on the Google map by typing the store’s name. I found the location of the store on the Google map by pasting its address. Below is the location of the store. Just in case you cannot see Google map here, this is the address: 5 Chome-2-3 Nishiikebukuro
Toshima-ku, Tōkyō-to 171-0021

Or

You can make your own taiyaki in your home 🙂 I bought a taiyaki pan on Amazon to do so when I was in America (but you can only make original taiyaki, not mini sized one with this…). You just need pancake mix, sweetened red bean paste (available at a local Asian market), and cooking oil. Below is the link of the taiyaki pan.

Taiyaki Fish-Shaped Cake Maker

Miraikan, The Science Museum in Tokyo (Odaiba District)


The Miraikan, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation
The Miraikan, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (image from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miraikan)

Last summer, I went to Miraikan, a Science Museum in Odaiba district of Tokyo and had a special experience at there!


location of Miraikan
Ticket price for the general admission is 620 Yens which is about $5.

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Geo-Cosmo (image from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miraikan)

This is Geo-Cosmo, which is a symbol exhibit of Miraikan. The earth shaped display was showing movement of the clouds on the globe which reflect the everyday image data sent from the weather satellites.

There was a special exhibit in the museum on the day I visited there.

The exhibit was about…..

Toilet & Poop! 

The special exhibition on 'toilet & feces'
The special exhibition on ‘toilet & feces’

Price of the ticket for the special exhibit was 1200 Yens (about $10).
A guide for this exhibition was a cute poop whose name was ‘Britto’ (sounds like Burito lol). Read the English description about him in the below picture.

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A cute poop, Britto

The exhibition was for educating people about toilet and human feces, where the feces go, and how they are processed once people flush toilets.

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A toilet decorated with shiny jewels (left) and a gold toilet (right)
an educational presentation about toilet
An educational presentation about toilet, the toilet says, “Don’t flush garbage(other than feces and tissues) down me! “

Below is a display stand for exhibiting kinds of human feces. What kind of poop is healthy? 🙂

An exhibit of  kind of human feces.
A display of kinds of human feces.

And,this a ‘poop making’ class! Many children were making poops with clay in the class.

Children making poops
Children making poops

For the last, below is my favorite stuff in the toilet exhibit. Here you can become feces and be flushed down a toilet. People wore poop hats and slid into a huge toilet (of course, the toilet does not send you to a sewage treatment plant).

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The giant toilet slide and visitors wearing poop hats

This is a video about the toilet slide 🙂

It was a fun experience. I just wished that the slide has been little longer though.

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Me in a poop hat

Other things in Odaiba below…

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a huge Gundam robot in Odaiba, Tokyo
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A sea food bowl. Yum!
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Chocobi (a Japanese star shaped chocolate snack) for a snack

The Ueno Zoo in Tokyo (Ueno District)


For celebrating New Year’s day, My boyfriend and I went to the Ueno zoo (or Ueno Zoological Gardens) in Tokyo few days ago. Last year, I came to the zoo for the first time at the beginning of 2014 and Ueno Zoo has become one of my favorite zoos since then. There was a variety of interesting and cute animals that I had never seen before (such as a naked mole rat colony)!

In front of the entrance of the Ueno zoo


Location of Ueno Zoo
Last year, I got a cute button and a poster that have cute horse pictures (in the Chinese zodiac, 2014 was horse’s year) on them from the Ueno zoo as New Year’s day’s gifts. So I was expecting that I would the gifts again on that day (if I could get them, they were supposed to be related to sheep as 2015 is the year of sheep in the Chinese zodiac) but I did not. We realized that we picked the wrong day for getting New Year’s day’s gifts. We went to the zoo on January 7th. I think the zoo provides the New Year’s day’s gifts on January 2nd or 3rd  every year. A New Year’s day’s gift from Ueno zoo for this year was a Japanese rice cracker.

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A poster for celebrating horse’s year (2014) from Ueno zoo
a Japanese rice cracker from Ueno zoo for celebrating sheep's year (2015) (picture from http://www.enjoytokyo.jp/amuse/event/1133282/)
A Japanese rice cracker from Ueno zoo for celebrating sheep’s year (2015) (picture from http://www.enjoytokyo.jp/amuse/event/1133282/)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can see different animal pictures on each tickets purchased from the Ueno zoo. I got a ticket with picture of one kind of cute mammal on it and My boyfriend got a ticket with a picture of a beautiful bird. The admission fee for each person was 600 Yens which was about $5.

Tickets for the Ueno zoo
Tickets for the Ueno zoo

The first animals you can see from the entrance are one of the representative animals of the Ueno zoo, pandas.

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The entrance of the panda exhibit
A panda eating bamboos

 

Actually pandas in the Ueno zoo are from China. A special airplane, the ‘Panda flight’ was used for transporting pandas from China to Tokyo, Japan.

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The story about how pandas came to the Ueno zoo from China

After we enjoyed the panda exhibit, we took some pictures in the panda studio near the panda exhibit. Staffs in the studio provided us a cute panda hair band and a panda hat for taking pictures. The staffs take pictures of people with a camera in the studio but you can also ask them to take free pictures with your own camera. So, bring your camera!

Panda studio
The panda studio

There were many other cute animals in the Ueno zoo 🙂

A mother and a baby Japanese monkeys
A mother and a baby Japanese monkeys

This is a picture of my favorite bird, shoebill. In my opinion, it looks like some kind of monsters in the anime, Pokemon. The bird is very interesting. It has big light blue eyes and a hug and broad bill. This bird also hardly moves its body so when you see this bird, you might feel like you are looking at a bird statue.

A shoebill, moveless animal
A shoebill, move-less bird

And here is my favorite exhibition, Small Mammal’s House! Here are many cute small rodents including flying squirrels, kangaroo rats, and naked mole rats.

In front of small mammal exhibition
In front of the Small Mammal’s House

This is the house (or tunnels) of a naked mole rat colony. The naked mole rats are the only mammals of the eusociality (the colony of the animals consist of queens, solders, and workers like ants or bees).

A naked mole rat colony. The naked mole rat is the only eusocial(have queen and ) mammal on the earth.
A naked mole rat colony

They look like baby rats, but they originally do not have any furs on their bodies.

Naked mole rats sleeping in their bedroom.
Naked mole rats sleeping in their bedroom

After we finished the tour in the zoo, we visited the gift shop in the Ueno zoo. In here, you can see various stuffed dolls which very resemble animals in the zoo. I bought a naked mole rat doll here last time I visited the zoo.

the gift shop
The gift shop

Below are photos of the naked mole rat doll I bought. The face with dot eyes and front teeth poking out of the mouth is so funny and adorable 🙂

Thank you for reading my post!

-Dr.Mouse-