16.かっぱ橋〔かっぱばし〕Kappabashi Kappabashi

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16.かっぱ橋〔かっぱばし〕Kappabashi Kappabashi
16. かっぱ橋〔かっぱばし〕 Kappabashi
Kappabashi is an area east of Ueno that is known for its wholesale
restaurant supply markets. It attracts foreigners who have learned
that here, one can find abundant supplies and varieties of 食品サ
ン プ ル (shokuhin sanpuru), the realistic wax or plastic food
models that are used in restaurant display cases throughout Japan.
Once can also purchase other restaurant supplies such as dishes,
utensils, and even sushi chef costumes. To get to Kappabashi, one
needs to take the Ginza Subway Line headed toward Asakusa and
get off at Tawaramachi. It is also a five-munute walk from Sensoji
Temple (see Asakusa above.)
17. 東京〔とうきょう〕スカイツリー Tokyo Sky Tree Sky Tree Tower celebrated its opening in the spring of 2012. At
634 meters (2080 feet), it is currently the tallest tower in the world,
and is the second tallest structure in the world. The Sky Tree
Tower enables more efficient digital broadcasting in Tokyo. Since
2006, NHK (National Broadcasting System of Japan) and many
of Japan's commercial television stations have switched from
analog to digital broadcasting. The location of the Sky Tree Tower
slightly east of Asakusa takes it out of the jungle of tall structures
that populate downtown Tokyo. The area is known as the new
tourism area that features the flavor of Tokyo during its earlier
days. The tower, located in Sumida Ward, lies between
Narihirabashi and Oshiage Stations. The area is home to long time
merchant families and craftsmen and is famous for its sumo
stables and wrestling tournaments held in Tokyo. It is also the
same general vicinity of the must-see Edo Tokyo Museum, which
showcases the cultural and historical background of Tokyo.
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Plastic sushi samples at
a Kappabashi shop
18. お台場〔おだいば〕 Odaiba
The image of Odaiba today is of an upscale recreational area along
Tokyo Bay. If is built on reclaimed land which came to life only
after the Japan's recovery from the burst of its bubble economy in
the late 1990's. Today, Odaiba is a sightseeing delight for
residents of Tokyo as well as tourists. It is a popular site for
weekend dates. Odaiba is the home of Fuji TV studios (site of
many TV drama productions), extravagant shopping complexes
including a Venice themed shopping mall, one of Tokyo's largest View of the popular newly
concert halls and nightclubs, hot springs, and the daikanransha, developed Odaiba area.
the second largest ferris wheel in the world. A park and beach also
occupy its shores.
19. 六本木〔ろっぽんぎ〕 Roppongi
In contemporary times, Roppongi has always attracted the ritzier
crowd. Many foreign embassies are located in this area, as are
banks and businesses. It has been known for its colorful nightlife
at bars and nightclubs. Recently, however, Roppongi boasts its
Roppongi Hills, one of Japan's largest property developments.
Central to Roppongi Hills is the Mori Tower, a 54-story highrise
which accommodates an art museum, a cinema complex, many
restaurants, cafes, trendy shops, TV stations, businesses and a
hotel. From the top of the tower, one is able to catch a breathtaking
view of Tokyo, including Tokyo Tower, which stands not too far
in the distance. This complex that surrounds the Mori Tower also
houses more offices, upscale apartments, shops, restaurants, cafes,
movie theaters, and some parks. Open spaces featuring gardens
and pavilions make this complex especially attractive.
Roppongi sports a new look
with the addition of upscale
Roppongi Hills.
20. 東京ドーム〔とうきょうドーム〕 Tokyo Dome
Accessible from many train lines and subways, including the JR
Sobu Line, the Tokyo Dome is the home field for the popular
Yomiuri Giants baseball team. This stadium has a 55,000 seat
capacity and has also been host to basketball and football games,
pro-wrestling matches, martial arts and kickboxing events as well
as music concerts. It stands on the site of the former Korakuen
Stadium. On its grounds, one is also able to enjoy roller coaster
rides, hot spring baths, bowling and arcade games.
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Tokyo Dome is the
centerpiece of this sports
mega-complex.
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C. 携帯電話(ケータイでんわ)Cell phones, also known as mobile phones.
The ケータイ culture in Japan has ballooned in ways that reflect the needs and lifestyles of the
Japanese. Most people through age 60 probably own a ケータイ. Japanese ケータイ perform all
functions that most cell phones in America do, such as taking still and moving digital images which can
be sent over the phone. They can serve as cameras to show images of persons who speak to one
another on the phone. Japanese can surf the internet and investigate blogs on their cell phones.
Commuters now use their phones to hold prepaid rail smartcards, which serve as passes at railway and
subway stations. These phones also have configurable databases, phone and address books, alarm
clocks, stopwatches, games, planners and image enhancement capabilities (such as creating animations).
They may be swiped to buy most anything at stores, vending machines or through catalogs. More
recent models allow users to watch movies and television, download music (much as one would on an
i-pod), browse on the text only sites on the internet, and check plane and train schedules. One recent
advanced usage of the cell phone is advertising. QR codes, a form of barcode on posters, flyers or
business cards, can be scanned by the cell phone to receive information, such as websites, that one can
visit to learn more about a product or service. One can also identify music or songs by holding one's
cell phone to the source of music, then trace the music to a website so that one can identify the music
one is listening to. "Text-messaging" by phone has become a more popular form of communication
than actually talking. While it appears to be the equivalent of text messaging, in reality, communication
through text on Japanese ケータイ is actually more similar to e-mail, and may be accessible through
the internet on one's personal computer as well. This form of phone e-mailing has taken off in Japan
for a variety or reasons. E-mailing over the phone is cheaper, is a more private form of communication,
allows communication that may be difficult to conduct face-to-face, and gives the sender as well as
receiver the freedom to communicate at times that are appropriate and convenient for them. When
e-mailing by phone, one can also enhance texts with special characters, emoticons, pictures and small
animations, and one may use Japanese or English. Most Japanese are sensitive about not talking on
their phones in public, and are asked to switch their phones to the silent mode, known as マナーモード
(manner mode) when using public transportation or while at restaurants, hospitals or other public
venues. Schools ban the use of ケータイ though they must deal with offenders occasionally. It is
illegal to drive or bike while using a cell phone, and most recently, one can be fined for interrupting
public gatherings such as concerts or theatre productions with ringing cell phones. Surely, the Japanese
will continue to think of more features they will add to the repertoire of cell phone capabilities.
The popularity of ケータイ
is obvious in this scene on a
train.
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