No curve was too sharp for them and their bicycle. No puddle was deep enough to stop them. -- Friends by Helme Hein

09 August, 2009

Hanabi in Odaiba

Kat is my buddy who will do what James won't do with me...namely anything involving crowds, tourists or tourist spots. James never would have done this with me...We headed to Odaiba (an island in Tokyo Bay constructed out of a landfill) to watch the hanabi from the shore. The monorail train goes alongside the famous Rainbow Bridge. It's so pretty at night, with Tokyo Tower and the bay all lit up. The fireworks were shot off 2 boats in the bay.

We followed the thousands of people dressed in their summer yukata...

to have a picnic on the beach...

with a few million other people.
And this is only 1/3 of the beach that was covered like this--portable picnic tables, grills, and hundreds of cameras on tri-pods.

The Domino's dude made a killing selling pizzas for $10.

Before the fireworks started (precisely at the stroke of 7, mind you), we visited Gundam, this huge transformer-like megatron that has been erected on Odaiba for the summer. He stands 59 feet tall!

This one is for Dirck and James...the 2 who really wanted to see Gundam. Apparently he emits laser light beams at night.

There's also a strange replica of this on the island. Don't know why. Can you see how gray Tokyo is in all of these pictures? No one ever told me it would be so bleh here all the time.

This video is kinda fun. We sat in front of some girls who yelled "kawaiiiiii" and "sugoiiiiii" everytime a firework went off. The crowd was totally into it...with collective "whooaaaaa's" throughout. I've seen a lot of fireworks in my day, and I thought Leiden, Holland would hold onto it's title of best New Years show, but the Japanese win the award. 12,000 fireworks were let off for exactly 90 minutes. Bursts of color that I would expect to be a grand finale by US standards was interspersed at least 6 times throughout the show. They threw up fireworks in the shape of planets, smiley faces, fish, umbrellas and even a Hello Kitty!

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