Written & Photographed March 2015, Edited March 29, 2019
Where to begin?
Well, I can now boast that my third night in Tokyo was spent at a death metal concert in the colourful neighbourhood of Shin-Okubo. That Saturday, Mori took me to Shinjuku by way of the busiest train station in the world. We browsed various shops including electronics stores and sleazy adult DVD boutiques.
Afterward, I was introduced to Adam from the USA, as well as his wife and sister-in-law. The five of us then made our way to a small venue illuminated with blood-red lights where we saw Japan’s down-tempo death metal outfit Anatomia play heavy, haunting tunes. It was an excellent show.
The next day, I brought my luggage east to the neighbouring prefecture of Chiba, meeting another acquaintance from Vancouver. She and her father were kind enough to invite me into their home and take me to an excellent BBQ restaurant. Their hospitality was unexpected and undeserved, but very appreciated.
Then, over the next couple weeks, I had several adventures:
I went to Shinjuku again and got lost (without a SIM card) as soon as I exited the Chuo-Sobu Line.
My friend Kohei showed me around Asakusa and accompanied me to a maid cafe for a taste of that good old-fashioned Japanese culture.
Adam invited me to his home for a small party and we ended up chatting late into the night over whisky, long after everyone else had left.
I explored the nooks and crannies of Ichikawa, feeling both excited and rather lonely.
I registered with some modelling agencies, met some girls, and some more friends from Vancouver.
And I began a passionate love affair with Yokohama Ie-Kei ramen.
During this time, I slowly began to get my bearings. Unfortunately, I was still far from independent, and there were still several hurdles to be overcome.