The period known in Italy as Ferragosto coincides with the Japanese O-Bon, that is the mourning of passed ones.
This means that many people come from abroad to the archipelago, to go to cemetery and mourn the passed loved one and to spend some time with their relatives.
But for a simple tourist, beyond the foreseeable problem of the overcrowding of public means of transportation, this means only two things
- Fireworks can be seen from Tokyo Tower, and there are a lot of matsuri scattered all around
- some shops might be closed.
This is the distressing sight that we had to face when we arrived in the not so downtown area of Nippori, better known as the fabric block.
Indeed, there were some fabric shops on both sides of the main streets, but at least the 0% of them was closed.
We happened to reach the house of button, which sports the well sounding claim “If you can't find it here, it doesn't exist”.
I've never seen so many buttons in my entire life *_*; endless rooms full of buttons of any shape, color, dimension, quality....and price ^_^
So we headed back to downtown, after having pillaged another Maple Wigs, that will be revering us from now to eternity, facing the delusion for what we missed....and ready to split to complete the purchases left behind in the previous days.
And, at last, the 16th of August, the date we are to go back to the Boot, is here.
We are again split into two groups, Francesca and I will go back a couple of hours before the others who, flying by Air France, will change in Paris instead of Frankfurt.
A part from the leaving for the airport at an impossible hour, the transfer by taxi and the train we didn't miss just for luck, when we reach Narita the matter gets more complicated than foreseen.
Due to the terrorist attack just prevented in London, we realize that safety procedures are really strict, and we fear for our overweight, despite the naval shipment of more than 40Kg of stuff we already made !
Before we left, I had asked my friends in the airport some tolerance of at least 10Kg, knowing the level of load I would have had, but I hadn't been confirmed my request had been approved.
Luckily, during the check in our 50Kg are accepted after the clerk smiled at us using 32 teeth and said “the kilograms allowed for each passenger are 20, but we are happy to inform you, miss Dani and miss “Vecini” that you have 10 kilos more!”
We breath and go to have breakfast without realizing that there are only 5 minutes left before boarding..and we haven't passed the security check yet.
Here a crazy rush against the clock starts, during which we running overcome at least 40 persons queuing and we show our boarding pass to the first of the queue to be allowed to proceed.
Our usual luck wants us to meet Miss Bitch of the day, who peacefully and arrogantly makes us understand that we can forget about it, while a couple of Japanese elders let us in without any problems.
We thank them and rush to the boarding gate; there are less than 15 minutes before take off, they could have left us on the ground closing the flight and that would have been only our fault ;_;
I don't know how we manage to reach our seats, that are unfortunately split, and get ourselves comfortable.
I spend the two flights quite fast, the first one by assembling my many gashapons and watching the 3d movie “Over the Hedge”, and the second one falling asleep on the seat from the taxiing to the landing.
Here we are in Malpensa after about 2 days of travel, not bad *_*
In the terminal we find Max Vertua waiting for us to be able to take pictures of our faces that looked like we were high in terminal stage, and who stays with us offering us pineapple juice, while we wait for the boys to arrive from Paris.
In a short while, the three of us are joined by my father and Giovanni and then Matteo, Nadia's boyfriend.
In the end the group is reunited again, even if for a little time and we, after having said goodbye, split again heading for our own town, tired but satisfied and with many many stories to tell to who, like you, will be so curious and willing to read them.