Happy Labor Thanksgiving Day and… Mon’s 7th and Monta’s 6th Birthday!

You all know it’s a national holiday in Japan today – Labor Thanksgiving Day, which falls one day before the U.S. Thanksgiving Day this year.

But did you also know it’s Mon’s 7th and Monta’s 6th birthday?

Here are their official birthday portraits!

 

Mon actually cooperated and sat still for her photo

Mon actually cooperated and sat still for her photo

 

Mon still cooperating

Mon still cooperating

 

Mon looking regal

Mon looking regal

 

And here's Monta

And here’s Monta

 

One more of Monta

One more of Monta

 

Four of these photos are actually iPhone “live photos” so I turned the last one of Monta into a 10 second YouTube video. It’s the live photo repeating itself 3 times, but cute. There wasn’t much action in the other live photos.

 

Anyway, off to celebrate Mon and Monta’s birthday now!

 

 

A walk along Broadway at the start of the new year holidays

Nakano Broadway that is.

I hadn’t been to Nakano for years, but today I needed to go over there for a minor iPad repair. It turns out there is an inexpensive, and very nice and professional repair shop just a 2 minute walk from the south exit of Nakano station. Check out Apple Juice if you need something done on your iPad or iPhone, like fixing a broken lightning connector, changing a battery, fixing a broken screen, etc.

While waiting for it to be done, I walked over to the north side and lots of memories came flooding back to me. I used to come to this area often when I lived in Hounancho. It was very easy to get to on my moped.

I walked through the “Sun Mall” to the end, into what is called Nakano Broadway. There I checked out some used computer shops to see what the going rates were for used iPads. I was surprised to find that for the iPad Air and iPad Air 2 the used rates were only about ¥5,000 yen ($80) different from the new prices straight from Apple. I guess iPads really hold their value!

I really like the Sun Mall and Nakano Broadway. It’s not the most modern, nor the most “chic” of shopping centers in Tokyo. But I think it probably has the most variety you can find anywhere. Hundreds of tiny shops selling everything you can imagine: all kinds of food, clothes, accessories, electronics, medicines, anime items, cell phones – even a clutter of antique stores! You can even stay overnight if you get stuck and miss the last train because there is a capsule hotel right in the mall! It was at Nakano Broadway that I bought that old Edison wax cylinder a long time ago.

Anyway, I really like the feel of that place. The old lady in the information booth is a real character, and loves explaining where to find what you are looking for. And you really need someone like her because the whole place is multi-floor maze of shops you can easily get lost in.

But it’s a nice place to get lost in. It has a bustle and good feeling of an older Tokyo right in the middle of new Tokyo. There were even two drunk young guys (obviously starting the New Year holidays early) sprawled on the floor, apologizing as little old ladies stepped around them while laughing at them. But it was all in good fun. Everybody was having a good time.

The weather today is also beautiful. It was a great start to the week long New Year holidays. Very nice to get out of the house.