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General Category => Real Railway Discussion => Photographs/Videos => Topic started by: Bealman on April 09, 2019, 07:10:58 AM

Title: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 09, 2019, 07:10:58 AM
Ok twelve months late, (or maybe twelve months too soon for some members), but here we go with another travelogue. It's been held up by things like me having difficulty posting pictures in the last twelve months, hospital stays and assorted things that get in the way of railways.

It all began when Bealette scored a job in 2017 teaching English in Japan. She was appointed to a school in a town just outside of Osaka, so after being there working for eight months, a visit from mom and dad was in order.

Japan had been on my bucket list for years, as the culture is so different, the railways are awesome, and of course there was always a chance of meeting up with forum member Railsquid!  ;)

So, one sunny morning last May, a flight to Cairns,

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419031840.jpeg)

.... to board a flight for Tokyo. The adventure begins! In Japan, all travel was by rail (and boat).

Oh, I can post pics at last!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 09, 2019, 07:48:46 AM
fascinating start.... just what we needed on a cold damp april ,morning, took the bullet train ?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 09, 2019, 07:58:09 AM
Don't switch channels....  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 09, 2019, 08:22:46 AM
Think work off this morning  :rain: so Bealman TV is an option.

Looking forward to more of your travels. Reminds me, except going to Purley last Saturday, I don't think I've been away for about 4 years  :(.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on April 09, 2019, 08:27:43 AM
Surely, a day out of Purley is a day wasted...
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 09, 2019, 09:45:14 AM
The mention of Purley always brings back the 'Nudge Nudge' sketch from Monty Python ;D
Sorry, George. We're just talking amongst ourselves while you resize all your pics :-X
We're not really going off topic :no: :angel:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on April 09, 2019, 09:49:55 AM
The mention of Purley always brings back the 'Nudge Nudge' sketch from Monty Python ;D

Me too, Mick, which is why I could not stop myself commenting!

Eric Idle at his fast-talking best and Terry Jones terrific as the straight man.  "Wot's it like, then?!"

I hope you are happily re-sizing George; I'm looking forward to more pictures...

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 09, 2019, 09:55:54 AM

I hope you are happily re-sizing George

The Moderation team paid good money to the surgeons to do that, John >:D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 09, 2019, 10:02:16 AM
Ha bloody ha  :laughabovepost:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 09, 2019, 10:14:12 AM
Hadn't seen the sketch. Have now. Should have said Riddlesdown instead of Purley although I'm sure that'll bring up more schoolboy humour  :doh:  :D

George, pics please, shut us all up!

Cheers weave  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 09, 2019, 10:19:17 AM
Coming....  not at the moment though.... at club on me crutches with a mighty fine VB  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on April 09, 2019, 01:00:17 PM
Coming....  not at the moment though.... at club on me crutches with a mighty fine VB  :beers:

Cheers, George!
 :pint:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on April 09, 2019, 02:37:32 PM
Quote
mighty fine VB
A  fine example of an oxymoron ,but with almost everything owned by 2 multi nationals i suppose the chance of a decent pint is pretty slim
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 09, 2019, 03:37:45 PM
Quote
mighty fine VB
A  fine example of an oxymoron ,but with almost everything owned by 2 multi nationals i suppose the chance of a decent pint is pretty slim

With Bealman laid up in hospital one of those multi nationals almost went down the tubes! :laugh:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 09, 2019, 03:48:55 PM
Quote
mighty fine VB
A  fine example of an oxymoron ,but with almost everything owned by 2 multi nationals i suppose the chance of a decent pint is pretty slim

With Bealman laid up in hospital one of those multi nationals almost went down the tubes! :laugh:

The famed Australian intravenous beer treatment method?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: scottmitchell74 on April 09, 2019, 04:18:47 PM
Always enjoy your travel blogs`
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Chetcombe on April 09, 2019, 04:32:57 PM
Looking forward to hearing about this trip - enjoy your VB (or three!)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 10, 2019, 07:07:50 AM
It was dark upon arrival in Tokyo, and after an interesting trip from the airport, we got our first taste of the pretty much standard sized city budget hotel room. Stand with both arms outstretched and you're touching the opposite walls.

Bathroom? Turn sideways to get in  :worried:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042205-7593060.jpeg)

And so began Bealman's three week fascination with Japanese toilets.....

Anyway, the next morning dawned sunny, and very warm. The hotel looks quite big from the outside.... until you realise that those windows define the width of your room!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042205-759301068.jpeg)

Sort of like the Tardis in reverse  :uneasy:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 10, 2019, 07:47:45 AM
george

a space saving idea for japanese builders and kato race track lovers. oh the trains we prefer
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on April 10, 2019, 08:17:30 AM
but did the bathroom have the standard Japanese loo that washes?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 10, 2019, 08:29:25 AM
Stay tuned - trying to build up a bit of suspenders suspense here!  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 10, 2019, 08:44:58 AM
Looking forward to more info about life 'behind enema lines'  :D

Cheers weave  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 10, 2019, 08:48:09 AM
We'll flush out the truth eventually.

On the toilet pictured, there is a small dark rectangle betwixt cover and hinge, which most likely some sort of sensor and therefore an indicator of additional functionality.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 10, 2019, 09:02:03 AM
Well spotted. Literally scared the  :poop: out of me  ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 10, 2019, 09:23:06 AM
Think you meant 'scared' unless it's a religion out there  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 10, 2019, 09:27:34 AM
Think you meant 'scared' unless it's a religion out there  ;)


Let me introduce you to Unko Sensei ("Mr. Poop") and his course book for learning Japanese characters (http://www.spoon-tamago.com/2017/04/20/poop-unko-kanji-drill/) (also available as a rice topping).

And while we're at it, Detective Bottom Cheeks (http://www.oshiri-tantei.com/).


Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 10, 2019, 09:48:12 AM
Keep going, chaps. Sooner or later the level will have gone down to mine and I'll chip in :-[ ;D
Weave in the lead at present, methinks.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: dannyboy on April 10, 2019, 09:53:06 AM
I think this is going to be a bottomless pit of innuendos!  :)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 10, 2019, 09:57:14 AM
Pretty awesome. So Squidlet is exposed to this?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 10, 2019, 10:25:52 AM
Pretty awesome. So Squidlet is exposed to this?

Indeed, "Detective Buttock-Face" is a regular fixture on Saturday morning kids' TV.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 10, 2019, 11:03:38 AM
We just have Inspector Marse  :D.

 :sorrysign:

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 10, 2019, 11:49:31 AM
No doubt he's the butt of bad jokes.

 :sorrysign:

What was this thread about anyway?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 10, 2019, 10:12:27 PM
Pretty awesome. So Squidlet is exposed to this?

Indeed, "Detective Buttock-Face" is a regular fixture on Saturday morning kids' TV.

I suppose it makes a change from all those kittens, but more of those later....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 12, 2019, 02:38:15 AM
.... after breakfast at MacDonald's which was conveniently across the street from the hotel, off for a bit of exploring. We set off on foot with the intention of finding that huge pedestrian crossing, but got hopelessly lost, it was hot, and I think it was miles from where we were anyway.

The queue here was longer than at MacDonald's.... live king crab for brekky, anyone?

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042206-75941521.jpeg)

So, realising we were lost, we headed back to the hotel in what I hoped was a short cut...

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042259-759422233.jpeg)

....to catch the subway at my daughter's suggestion to Ueno, where the Tokyo zoo was supposedly located. The Tokyo underground network is a labyrinth which makes the London Tube seem easy. However, we eventually found ourselves outside Ueno station (on the right), and came across a couple of sights which were strange at first, but by the end of three weeks, we hardly noticed.

Masks....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042331-75943523.jpeg)

...and school excursions everywhere. Japanese kids seem to spend a lot of time outside the classroom - mind you the school day is longer.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042435-759442122.jpeg)

By now it was early afternoon and really starting to get rather hot. The zoo was a bit further away than it looked on the map, and by now Bealman's ankle problem was starting to become noticeable. However, a monorail track was spotted. So, cameraphone at the ready, train coming, click! Wait a minute... no train!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042435-75944707.jpeg)

I was expecting it to be running on top of the rail, but of course it was hanging underneath it!  :smackedface: :doh:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042437-759461615.jpeg)

By the time we got to the zoo, the ankle was playing up quite intensely, but I did my best. The zoo is actually quite well laid out with a large variety of exhibits. These elephants will undoubtedly understand more Japanese than Bealman  ;D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042437-7594611.jpeg)

....and the thing with a towel on it's head was a gorilla who obviously had more sense than Bealman shading his head from the sun, and fanning himself with a branch.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042529-759482485.jpeg)

At this point, a combination of the ankle and heat caused an adjournment of the day's activities to a watering hole near the hotel to relax with a mighty fine Japanese beer.

Next day, off to Osaka to meet up with Bealette, and our first encounter with a Shinkansen!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 12, 2019, 05:27:54 AM
look forward to the next instalment george
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on April 12, 2019, 09:04:39 AM

However, we eventually found ourselves outside Ueno station (on the right), and came across a couple of sights which were strange at first, but by the end of three weeks, we hardly noticed.

Masks....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042331-75943523.jpeg)

...and school excursions everywhere. Japanese kids seem to spend a lot of time outside the classroom - mind you the school day is longer.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419042435-759442122.jpeg)

Great adventures, George.  Thank you very much.

Masks are not unknown in Edinburgh... some visitors wear them.  They must assume us Caledonians are a smelly lot!  And as for the school teacher; much better dressed than they are hereabouts.

Thanks again and all the very best.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 12, 2019, 09:05:45 AM
Not entirely sure such a trip was a good idea timing wise with your ankle issues, George, so I hope you consulted the medics first. Good pics!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 12, 2019, 09:42:45 AM
I consulted Dr VB before the trip.  :) Don't forget, this was twelve months ago, and you know the outcome, Mick!

The teacher looked just as hassled as his western counterparts and looks like he enjoys a beer after work  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 13, 2019, 10:02:08 AM
Ok next day, time to head off to meet up with Bealette. So, on a Saturday morning, Bealman came face to face with a legend he'd first read about in a Meccano Magazine in the late fifties - A SHINKANSEN!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043303-75949450.jpeg)

Inside, just like being in an aircraft, only cleaner and much more room. The attendants, such as the one in the photo, always bow when they enter and leave the carriage.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043330-759501234.jpeg)

Time to break out some refreshment as the train pulls effortlessly out of Tokyo. The speed and smoothness of these machines is astonishing.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043445-75951855.jpeg)

Shortly, our first glimpse of Mount Fuji:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043445-759511333.jpeg)

It was a bit hazy, but we got some good views - not that they lasted long at the speed we were going!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043447-75953988.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043447-75953717.jpeg)

After a quick couple of hours, we arrived at Shin-Osaka, and said goodbye to our trusty car 15....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043448-759551541.jpeg)

I inspected the tail-end of the beast....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043449-759561029.jpeg)

....while crews were changed. The train crews comport themselves like airline crews. Most impressive.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043448-75955819.jpeg)

Unlike Bealman, who got his finger in this shot!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/75/255-090419043450-759571124.jpeg)

Next episode... Osaka!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 13, 2019, 10:18:54 AM
In case you weren't aware, the crew change at Osaka is because that's the boundary between JR Tokai (who run the line from Tokyo to Osaka) and JR West (who run it from Osaka to Fukuoka).
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 13, 2019, 10:21:09 AM
No, I was not! Cheers, Ian!   :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 13, 2019, 11:03:40 AM
thank you george

i really did enjoy my experience on the shinkansen and whizzing past mount fuji - hope you enjoyed the beer
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: scottmitchell74 on April 13, 2019, 12:15:57 PM
Awesome! Very envious of your trip so far. Japan is on my short-list...(but it's long on $$ so...?)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 13, 2019, 12:53:52 PM
In case you weren't aware, the crew change at Osaka is because that's the boundary between JR Tokai (who run the line from Tokyo to Osaka) and JR West (who run it from Osaka to Fukuoka).

Does JR Ewing take it further? :-X
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 14, 2019, 02:20:18 AM
Awesome! Very envious of your trip so far. Japan is on my short-list...(but it's long on $$ so...?)

Not necessarily so..... dunno what airfares are like from the USA, but a budget airline here offered bargain basement flights at the time we went. In fact, ridiculously so. Sydney-Tokyo return A$ 800 - for the two of us!! That's only US$576!

Once over there,yeah, some items were expensive, but must-haves like beer were around the same as Aussie prices, and you could eat at local food chains cheaply. We'd stock up on essentials and sandwiches, snacks, beer, etc at 7/11 or Family Marts, which are everywhere.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 14, 2019, 04:00:13 AM
......On arrival at Osaka, things became decidedly pear-shaped. Bealette was working (yes, school is in on Saturdays in Japan - Bealette's weekend was Sunday and Monday), and not meeting us until that evening. Bealman's GPS was not working on the phone, and while the hotel looked to be near to the station (indeed, it was chosen for that particular attribute), a combination of heavy luggage and hot, humid conditions saw us walking in circles.

We went through this arcade three times! At least it was air-conditioned, but of course, being Japan, full of teeming humanity:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083858-761211801.jpeg)

After close to two hours of this, I succumbed to stopping a taxi, driven by an old guy who put Bealman to shame by single-handedly throwing all our luggage into the boot, driving us around the corner to the hotel, and charging ziltch!

We'd actually walked past the bloody place four times  :worried:

Anyway, here's the view:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083858-76121793.jpeg)

We settled in, knackered to wait for Bealette. I couldn't make any sense out of Japanese TV. Very strange shows.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083900-761381175.jpeg)

Unable to watch TV, Bealman continued his study of Japanese toilet facilities:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083901-76139677.jpeg)

I can assure everyone that you need to think twice before setting that pressure green light to the far right!  :o

Some of the more up-market public ones of course, have a privacy button (I think this was in a Kentucky Fried Chicken shop):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083906-76144885.jpeg)

Anyway...... to be continued  :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 14, 2019, 05:39:26 AM
looks like you did not fancy viewing the japanese version of  You've Been Framed! or countdown, a quiz show, sometimes every hotel block looks similar and every building - nightmare - must have had poor signage - so you did not fancy a degree in japanese plumbing either ?

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 14, 2019, 06:06:26 AM
The signage was there.... 10 stories up! The lobby had a coffee shop attached at street level, and hence was very inconspicuous. Viewed from across the street, the place looked just like it did on Booking.com, but easy to miss if you're on the same side.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 14, 2019, 06:15:26 AM
hope the shower, aircon worked, the food was pleasant and the bed comfortable
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 14, 2019, 07:48:34 AM
We settled in, knackered to wait for Bealette. I couldn't make any sense out of Japanese TV. Very strange shows.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083900-761381175.jpeg)

Don't worry, it is not actually possible to make sense of Japanese TV.

Unable to watch TV, Bealman continued his study of Japanese toilet facilities:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083901-76139677.jpeg)

I can assure everyone that you need to think twice before setting that pressure green light to the far right!  :o


One imagines Bealman ascending slowly ceilingwards, perched upon a rising column of water.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 14, 2019, 08:08:21 AM
Exactly why I'm suggesting to avoid the plus button at all costs!  ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 14, 2019, 08:38:16 AM
Hi George,

Couple of questions, which I didn't think I'd be asking on a Sunday morning, is there a water temperature control and what music does it play while you're on the job?

Enquiring minds need to know.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Was just thinking of any poor tourist out there who doesn't speak English. Maybe there should be an international symbol for STOP on that button  :D

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 14, 2019, 10:43:00 AM
A wonderful report, George. I've had a look at TOTO's website and it's quite mind boggling :goggleeyes:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on April 14, 2019, 10:58:39 AM
great report George, reminds me of my short time there.
cheers
Graham
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Invicta Alec on April 14, 2019, 11:05:46 AM
Oooooh, I'm enjoying this!

A very long time ago I went from the UK for a working visit to Tokyo (International trade fair). Its fascinating and weird at the same time. At least they drive on the same side of the road as us!

Alec.


Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Lawrence on April 14, 2019, 02:33:59 PM
Whilst this is all very entertaining George, where are the train pics?  C'mon now stop teasing us.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: dannyboy on April 14, 2019, 04:48:35 PM
Well I was a bit disappointed with the latest report - I could not see any newspaper squares!  :)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: joe cassidy on April 14, 2019, 08:27:06 PM
The most popular newspaper in Japan is Asahi Cleanbum.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 14, 2019, 11:11:51 PM
Having obtained a PhD in Bography, I feel obligated to educate the world about Japanese ablutions  :D

This is in no way being derogatory - in fact I found the toilets refreshingly civilised and getting home to our boring old loos in Chez Bealman was a bit of a let down!

As NewportNobby has found out, there is a website, and you can order one for your own home!  :thumbsup:

Be aware that there is a backside to this aspect of Japan, though.... but that will have to wait for a future post....  :moony:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 14, 2019, 11:17:11 PM
Whilst this is all very entertaining George, where are the train pics?  C'mon now stop teasing us.

Don't worry Lawrence, they're coming!  :beers:

In the meantime, the first day in Osaka was rainy, so we went to the aquarium. That was also impressive, on multiple levels around a huge tank of sharks, stingrays and stuff, but I won't bore everyone with that. I thought these little jellyfish were interesting though, even though there seemed more than there actually was, thanks to mirrors:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-130419083905-761442205.jpeg)

.....to be continued..... trains coming (and cars)......
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Malc on April 15, 2019, 12:53:26 PM
Just as a matter of interest re the people wearing masks. I often encountered then when flying via Schipol airport. It turns out that the Japanese tourists are not wearing the masks for their benefit, but for other peopleís. Generally they are suffering from colds and coughs and are wearing masks to prevent the spread of infection.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on April 15, 2019, 01:00:03 PM
this is common throughout asia, something other countries could do well to follow.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on April 15, 2019, 05:16:45 PM
Quote
Generally they are suffering from colds and coughs and are wearing masks to prevent the spread of infection.
Must of been a cold epidemic in  Thailand at the beginning of the year as there was a fair few wearing them.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 15, 2019, 10:58:30 PM
Well that's something I didn't think of, and Bealette didn't tell me either. Explains why I'd see them walking around with them on a clear hazeless sunny day!

Thanks, Malc!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 16, 2019, 03:11:41 AM
thanks interesting trip so far george !!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on April 16, 2019, 04:15:07 AM
great to see normality rather than all the tourist bits.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 16, 2019, 06:57:37 AM
great to see normality rather than all the tourist bits.

I should point out that normally in Japan we don't go to quite those lengths to brew a cuppa ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 16, 2019, 07:38:16 AM
Just as well too. The green stuff that I was given resembled green powder paint I used to use put on my layout, and it tasted like I should imagine the powder paint would taste  :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 16, 2019, 10:11:28 AM
As one with a minimal interest in JR I am really enjoying these pics of 'normal' life in your blog, George. I've always found 'The Way of Tea' fascinating but, like you, would probably not enjoy the finished product :no:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 16, 2019, 10:18:48 AM
As one with a minimal interest in JR

No worries, there are over 100 other railway companies in Japan to choose from  :angel:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 18, 2019, 03:24:03 AM
....Another warm sunny day, and a visit to central Osaka. Here's Bealman & Bealette at Osaka castle:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024720-7619085.jpeg)

Don't let the tranquil setting fool you. Behind the camera, all sorts of street shows were going on, and the entire castle (with moat) is surrounded by the high rise hustle and bustle of Osaka!

The CBD is interesting, with a canal/river flowing through the middle:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024722-761921184.jpeg)

There is much advertising, a la Piccadilly or Times Square (it would seem that running a relay in a business suit is a popular sport in these parts):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024722-76192651.jpeg)

Anyway, feeling a bit peckish, we had a bite to eat here, but don't ask me what it was  :worried:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024723-76194325.jpeg)

But whatever it was, it would have to be better than what was next door - a puffer fish restaurant! There was a reassuring notice in the window:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024724-761961121.jpeg)

And there was the beast itself, swimming around blissfully unaware it was going to end up on someone's plate - definitely not mine!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024724-761961706.jpeg)

A popular Osaka bar.... closed, unfortunately.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024723-76194600.jpeg)

.... and then down a seedy little alley, which contained BAR MOMO

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024726-7619823.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024726-76198396.jpeg)

It too, turned out to be closed, so we opted for a nearby pseudo-Irish bar and a mighty fine Guiness:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-140419024727-76200844.jpeg)

We eventually got a late train back to our hotel. The Japanese work incredibly long hours, and it's quite common to see kids in school uniform on the platforms late at night. We were a bit fazed by this, but Bealette just took it as normal.


Next stop, somewhere I was very much looking forward to - Hiroshima.



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 24, 2019, 05:14:40 AM
...Bye to Bealette - she had to go to work, but was getting a long weekend coming up, so we planned to return, and back onto a Shinkansen for the trip to Hiroshima. Notice the clear platform markings telling you where to stand for each carriage:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419031957-76202656.jpeg)

Notice also the almost non-existant gap between carriage and platform! Local trains on other lines:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419031958-76202620.jpeg)

Our train was getting cleaned, presumably by Hello Kitty:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419031959-762232383.jpeg)

Anyway after a week in Japan and attending a tea ceremony, Bealman had become pretty fluent in Japanese and could see we had a while to wait as our train wasn't due to depart until 12.08:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032000-76223537.jpeg)

Well, in reality I worked that out when the English version came up  :D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032002-762251788.jpeg)

And sure enough, right on the second, we were accelerated towards Hiroshima. Brilliant trains, unreal.  :thumbsup:

And in a couple of hours, ground zero.......

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032002-762251168.jpeg)

Next, Bealman's Hiroshima adventure.....



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 24, 2019, 07:37:58 AM
thanks for this george,guess the trains were on time departing and arriving unlike in the uk. and clean. was there a good standard of catering ?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Buffin on April 24, 2019, 07:48:14 AM
 :greatpicturessign:

No gap between the train and the platform - so none of this curving platform nonsense?  :no:

Looking at the platforms for the local trains, I wonder were the canopies donated by Kato?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 24, 2019, 08:08:58 AM
Didn't see onboard catering... dunno if there is any. Maybe Railsquid can answer that? We just took sandwiches and beer on board, they didn't seem to have a problem with that. No bins though.... we took our rubbish off with us.

Regarding curved platforms, the speed that the one's that don't stop come through negates that concept completely!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 24, 2019, 09:00:23 AM
Didn't see onboard catering... dunno if there is any. Maybe Railsquid can answer that?

There may be a trolley service, depending on route and/or time of day. The days of restaurant cars or even on-board buffet cars are long behind us. On the other hand you will find well-stocked convenience stores on platforms.

We just took sandwiches and beer on board, they didn't seem to have a problem with that. No bins though.... we took our rubbish off with us.

There's usually one in the vestibule area, though maybe not all trains have them.

Regarding curved platforms, the speed that the one's that don't stop come through negates that concept completely!

There are a few curved "legacy" platforms around, but the Shinkansen network was built from scratch so any curves are very gentle.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 24, 2019, 09:41:43 AM
Thanks Ian. :thumbsup:

You've jogged my memory. I did indeed discover the bins near the end of the trip.

I also seem to remember a trolley coming through, but no beer on board.

As you say, the platform kiosks are very well stocked.

Thanks for that!  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 25, 2019, 02:46:04 AM
At this point, we'd had  enough of tiny hotel rooms and decided to go up-market for at least a couple of nights. JR have a chain of hotels which go under the name Granvia. Not only are they bigger rooms, but are more of a western type of hotel (and also considerably more expensive).
However, they have one very important advantage (especially when you're carting luggage around and you've got a dodgy ankle) - they are literally part of the railway station.

It was certainly good to have enough room to swing a Hello Kitty:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032004-76227625.jpeg)

Here's the view - Hiroshima station with a departing Shinkansen in the distance. Incredible to think that all this has grown from total obliteration.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032004-76227658.jpeg)

The room included this smartphone which you were allowed to take out with you during your stay, for navigation and information purposes. Bealman thought that was pretty cool!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032014-762291518.jpeg)

However, the sign on the same desk was not quite so cool....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032012-762282480.jpeg)

These two views give some idea of the contrast between our first couple of hotels and this one. Foyer:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032018-76231945.jpeg)

.... and the hotel itself, which, in common with many major cities, is not only connected to the railway, but also has a bus station and multiple cab ranks.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032017-762311967.jpeg)

We had a few nights in Hiroshima, so rather than explore the city, on instruction from Bealette, we caught a train to board a ferry to the island of Miyajima, subject of the next installment.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032021-762321244.jpeg)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 25, 2019, 03:18:55 AM
At this point, we'd had  enough of tiny hotel rooms and decided to go up-market for at least a couple of nights. JR have a chain of hotels which go under the name Granvia. Not only are they bigger rooms, but are more of a western type of hotel (and also considerably more expensive).
However, they have one very important advantage (especially when you're carting luggage around and you've got a dodgy ankle) - they are literally part of the railway station.

Useful to know.

It was certainly good to have enough room to swing a Hello Kitty:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032004-76227625.jpeg)


I demand video evidence of you doing that.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on April 25, 2019, 08:39:32 AM
A very interesting notice, George!  I should imagine it has been photographed several times.

I'm really enjoying your travelogue.  I was surprised (and horrified!) to see graffiti in a picture.  I had imagined that Japan would be a graffiti-free paradise.

I look forward to your next instalment.

Many thanks and best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 25, 2019, 09:03:23 AM
Just noticed NewportNobby talking in the Bodmin Road thread about the whoomp as two express trains pass each other.

Two Shinkansens are really scary!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 25, 2019, 09:38:38 AM
Just noticed NewportNobby talking in the Bodmin Road thread about the whoomp as two express trains pass each other.

Two Shinkansens are really scary!!

Should you visit Japan again, I highly recommend checking out this Shinkansen viewing spot (warning: turn down volume!)


Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 25, 2019, 09:48:09 AM
I'm really enjoying your travelogue.  I was surprised (and horrified!) to see graffiti in a picture.  I had imagined that Japan would be a graffiti-free paradise.

Compared to many other countries it is. I happened to travel along the main line between Tokyo and Yokohama after reading your comment, and saw precisely two instances, one of which was actually the remnants of an attempt which had largely been cleaned off.

There is unfortunately a trend for spray paint vandal scum from overseas to travel to Japan, but the authorities are vigilant (https://soranews24.com/2019/04/04/australian-arrested-at-narita-airport-for-graffiti-on-japanese-train-in-tokyo/).
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 25, 2019, 10:01:53 AM
I hope that dude at the end of the first video isn't joining the current worldwide dangerous  selfie craze... let's see how close we can stand to a speeding Shinkansen....

And of course when it comes to graffiti, well I guess we'll ignore your avatar....  :D ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 25, 2019, 03:34:47 PM

It was certainly good to have enough room to swing a Hello Kitty:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-150419032004-76227625.jpeg)


A certain person will get to know about your lady of the night unless money is deposited in my bank account forthwith >:D :)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: cornish yorkie on April 25, 2019, 10:34:19 PM
 :hellosign: Excellent adventures George, thanks for sharing
  :greatpicturessign:
       regards Derek.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 26, 2019, 03:26:42 AM
A quick word about our rail travel when we were there, in case any members are thinking of visiting. We got a JR (Japan Rail) pass for twenty one days, which worked out perfectly for the three week period we were there.

Be aware, though, that it covers JR only. Any travel on subways and local trains is additional, which you pay for as you go. However, there are the odd unexpected benefits. After a short local train ride out of Hiroshima, we were pleasantly surprised that the ferry to the island of Miyajima was owned by JR, therefore our JR passes worked on that.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054019-763042429.jpeg)

Miyajima is one of those places like the Lake District - loved to death by local and overseas tourists alike. However, we had a nice warm day for the visit, and it wasn't too crowded. Definitely worth a visit, and, apart from a deer trying to nick me sandwich and spilling me beer over, a great day out. But more details to come....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 26, 2019, 04:16:59 AM
A quick word about our rail travel when we were there, in case any members are thinking of visiting. We got a JR (Japan Rail) pass for twenty one days, which worked out perfectly for the three week period we were there.

Be aware, though, that it covers JR only. Any travel on subways and local trains is additional, which you pay for as you go. However, there are the odd unexpected benefits. After a short local train ride out of Hiroshima, we were pleasantly surprised that the ferry to the island of Miyajima was owned by JR, therefore our JR passes worked on that.

Those passes are very most excellent value, a couple of Shinkansen trips and you've already paid less than the normal fare.

IIRC on one (train intensive) trip many years ago I calculated I recouped my "investment" by about 600% compared to the normal train fare.

Not available for those of us resident in Japan, alas.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 26, 2019, 05:18:39 AM
Yes, we were very happy with them. The only thing which was a hassle (which I'd forgotten about) was they had to be stamped to activate/validate them at the start, and that office was packed with tourists like us doing the same thing.

After that though it was plain sailing.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 26, 2019, 06:33:12 AM
How did you find the japanese ticketing system and its ins and outs? Must have been interesting compared to the uk and its complexities, validities etc
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 26, 2019, 07:50:41 AM
Believe me, compared to the UK, everything Just Works. Basically, you can go to the station, look at the network diagram on the wall which shows prices from the current station, and buy a ticket for that amount, and Robert is your mother's brother. And if you decided to go a bit further, you can just pay the extra at the station you get off at. And you can pay in large denomination bills and the ticket machines will accept them and give change.

It is actually slightly more complex especially if you involve reserved seats and/or advance-booking-with-discounts, but compared to the UK system it's child's play.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 26, 2019, 08:10:36 AM
Agree. Even at ticket machines in rush times at major stations, there would be an attractive young lady in uniform who spoke excellent English and would target you straight away to give assistance. Brilliant!

Wish I could say the same about access, though. There seems to be a distinct lack of facilities for the mobility impaired. If they're there at all, they're not well signposted. I'd often find myself dragging heavy luggage up and down substantial flights of stairs.

Stations in major cities are essentially mini-cities unto themselves!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 26, 2019, 10:20:20 AM
@Bealman (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=255) @railsquid (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=3832)
Some years ago 'Top Gear' did a race across Japan with Clarkson in a car and May/Hammond using trains/buses. Great play was made that at stations nothing was in English and very few people spoke English so much time was lost by the pair which, eventually, led to Clarkson winning the race.
My question is - have things improved so much over the years, or was it a case of 'never let the truth get in the way of a good story' i.e. let's just make a good TV show and to hell with reality?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Invicta Alec on April 26, 2019, 10:44:21 AM
@Bealman (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=255)

 Great play was made that at stations nothing was in English and very few people spoke English.........


I was there in 1983. I don't remember how I managed to buy a ticket for a three stop train journey but I do remember standing for about fifteen minutes in front of an impossibly complex map trying to match the squiggles on the ticket to station names on the map hoping to work out which line to use. In a bit of a panic I took a guess at which of the four platforms to use and took the first train to arrive. I guessed correctly.

Later in the day an interpreter girl at the exhibition site I was attending looked at my ticket and told me it just read something like "Central zone only, valid one day".  :-[

Alec.

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 26, 2019, 11:09:21 AM
@Bealman (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=255) @railsquid (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=3832)
Some years ago 'Top Gear' did a race across Japan with Clarkson in a car and May/Hammond using trains/buses. Great play was made that at stations nothing was in English and very few people spoke English so much time was lost by the pair which, eventually, led to Clarkson winning the race.
My question is - have things improved so much over the years, or was it a case of 'never let the truth get in the way of a good story' i.e. let's just make a good TV show and to hell with reality?

I vaguely recall seeing that one. Available on Youtube for reference:



I'm going to go out on a limb here, and this may be a controversial opinion, but I'd suggest it would be unwise to treat Top Gear as a hard-hitting fact-based documentary.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 26, 2019, 11:16:48 AM
I'd say with Top Gear it was a case of TV getting in the way of reality. As seen a few pics ago, signs came up in Japanese, followed closely by English.

As for 1983, maybe not as high tech, but wasn't it fun?

These days, it's not getting on and off the right train, it's getting to them.

(Personal opinion from three weeks experience)   :uneasy:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 26, 2019, 11:19:17 AM
@Bealman (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=255)

 Great play was made that at stations nothing was in English and very few people spoke English.........


I was there in 1983. I don't remember how I managed to buy a ticket for a three stop train journey but I do remember standing for about fifteen minutes in front of an impossibly complex map trying to match the squiggles on the ticket to station names on the map hoping to work out which line to use. In a bit of a panic I took a guess at which of the four platforms to use and took the first train to arrive. I guessed correctly.

Later in the day an interpreter girl at the exhibition site I was attending looked at my ticket and told me it just read something like "Central zone only, valid one day".  :-[

Probably a couple of decades too late for this advice, but you could have just bought the cheapest ticket and presented it at the destination station, the staff would have let you know if any additional fare was necessary.

These days there is a plethora of infomation inside and outside the trains Japanese and English (often Korean and Chinese too), even the ticket machines speak English.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 26, 2019, 11:38:12 AM
even the ticket machines speak English.

and, no doubt, better than many English people do (but that's another subject)


I'm going to go out on a limb here, and this may be a controversial opinion, but I'd suggest it would be unwise to treat Top Gear as a hard-hitting fact-based documentary.

Eh? Wot? You mean they've been pulling the wool over my eyes for all these years? What a trio of rotters :unimpressed: :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 26, 2019, 11:43:50 AM
These days, it's not getting on and off the right train, it's getting to them.

(Personal opinion from three weeks experience)   :uneasy:

Certainly at most urban stations, and all main stations, there will be escalators and lifts available, though finding them if you're unfamiliar with the location may be more of an issue.

Shinjuku is a bit of a pain due to the sheer size and insane interconnectedness with the surrounding subterranean infrastructure. Had I known I could probably have drawn you a luggage-friendly route. If it's any consolation, they've spent the last 15 years totally reconstructing the underneath of the main JR station and once that's done (next year apparently) things will be a lot easier.

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 26, 2019, 11:46:47 AM

I'm going to go out on a limb here, and this may be a controversial opinion, but I'd suggest it would be unwise to treat Top Gear as a hard-hitting fact-based documentary.

Eh? Wot? You mean they've been pulling the wool over my eyes for all these years? What a trio of rotters :unimpressed: :D

In their defence, definitely the people to go to if you want to know the water-carrying capacity of a 1980s Austin Princess (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bf7q8lWEd-o).
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 26, 2019, 11:56:56 AM
Shinjuku was cool in a way because it was so difficult. However, it was my choice, even though I didn't have a clue where I was or what I was doing, but we'll leave that for a later episode....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 26, 2019, 12:24:57 PM

I'm going to go out on a limb here, and this may be a controversial opinion, but I'd suggest it would be unwise to treat Top Gear as a hard-hitting fact-based documentary.

Eh? Wot? You mean they've been pulling the wool over my eyes for all these years? What a trio of rotters :unimpressed: :D

In their defence, definitely the people to go to if you want to know the water-carrying capacity of a 1980s Austin Princess (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bf7q8lWEd-o).

or how to get the best from your touring caravan
Sorry, George :-[
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/51/264-280417102845-51439110.gif)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on April 26, 2019, 12:29:01 PM
I have a feeling it was you indicating 'right' a few posts ago that started it.

 ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 26, 2019, 12:33:34 PM
I have a feeling it was you indicating 'right' a few posts ago that started it.

 ;D

Guilty as charged, m'lud :sorrysign:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 27, 2019, 07:25:00 AM
....meanwhile, back in the Land of the Rising Sun, the ferry deposited us on the island of Miyajima, where, like other places in Japan, wild deer are allowed to roam freely.

We have them here in Wollongong too, by the way, but the introduced species are feral and becoming a downright pest, and a dangerous one, too. These are full sized stags which wander down from the escarpment looking for food and have caused a number of accidents on local roads, some of them serious. The front garden of Chez Bealman has been chewed up on more than one occasion by these pests. They need culling, and that is that.

Anyway, on the island, they roam quite freely among locals and tourists. This one in the cafe doorway was still there when we returned for the ferry later in the day.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054020-763042206.jpeg)

By the way, the food in the window is plastic, not real. One of the cool things about Japan is that just about every eatery you go to, you know what you're getting before you order - you can look at the plastic version in the window!

Mrs B gets up close and personal with the aforementioned wildlife:
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054021-763062296.jpeg)

Signs are up warning you that these are not tame beasts, and can inflict nasty bites and other injuries. I know what I'd like to inflict on the one that ate me sandwich....

It was on the island that we encountered our first Japanese garden, albeit a small one, but with the biggest goldfish Bealman had ever seen:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054021-76306107.jpeg)

We arrived at the Tori Gate just as the tide was going out. Bealman puts on his best "Hey look, I'm a tourist" - mind you, I still reckon that the Japanese themselves are the world's top shutterbugs.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054022-76307488.jpeg)

Itsukushima Shine is surrounded by water by water at high tide:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054023-76309181.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054024-76309151.jpeg)

The tide was pretty much out by now:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054025-76311723.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054025-763112402.jpeg)

Spot the Bealman.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054026-763131994.jpeg)

Mrs B decided she'd walk out and take a look at the gate - that's her in the pink in front of the left central tower - and here's where the deer incident occurred. Just after I took this pic, I thought I'd have lunch. I'm sitting on a wall munching away, when a big hairy head appears over my shoulder and takes off with me sandwich. I got such a fright I managed to spill me beer over with the other hand!  :veryangry:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054026-763131342.jpeg)

Anyway, off I went to the nearest public toilet to clean myself up, to be confronted by the most civilised male loo I've ever encountered:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054028-763142486.jpeg)

Now how cool is that? Even the island's electrical supply was tidy compared to the mess under Bealman's layout!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054028-76315569.jpeg)

Overall, a very pleasant day trip indeed. Recommended.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 27, 2019, 07:41:26 AM
thanks george

a memorable trip
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: tutenkhamunsleeping on April 27, 2019, 07:59:47 AM
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054021-763062296.jpeg)

Danger!  Quicksand! :no:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 27, 2019, 12:51:29 PM
Danger!  Quicksand! :no:

Deer Deer :doh:

Great pics, George
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on April 27, 2019, 01:02:30 PM
mick


george bealman said to mrs b " oh my dear, are you ok my dear , i m more worried  about you,never mind that deer ! " !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: grumbeast on April 27, 2019, 04:12:43 PM
Really lovely pics George, shrines and gardens in Japan are top of the list for Mr and Mrs Grumbeast to visit, weíre saving for a trip there in the next few years.  I get your frustration with Deer too, we have an urban herd here, flowers get chomped, trees get stripped and only the backup camera on the car has stopped me running one down on my driveway
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 28, 2019, 12:08:26 AM
That's exactly what happens here. Last year a group of about half a dozen or so wandered out onto the motorway from Sydney - speed limit 110 km/hr!!

Wollongong has a large steelworks, and there have even been sightings there! The steelworks is connected by rail to the mine on the escarpment behind Chez Bealman, so presumably they have wandered down there.

They are not the cute little critters you see in these photos... these are big beasts and are becoming a real problem.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on April 28, 2019, 01:09:40 AM
Hi George,

We need to ship Fenton off to Australia to sort your deers out!  :)

Love that you seem to have been living off MacDonald's breakfasts and sandwiches (and beer).

Great stuff.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: LASteve on April 28, 2019, 01:22:35 AM
Great pictures. Your adventures just add fuel to the fire to visit Japan. My wife is fifth-generation Californian, even her grandparents didn't speak the language. I have a small tattoo of the memorial at Manzanar. Her parents were both interned. I use it as a reminder of how to behave.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 28, 2019, 05:24:04 AM
I really wanted to visit ground zero, the site where the bomb exploded at 8.15am on that August 6th morning of 1945. So, on a suitably overcast but very warm and humid day off we went.

Like most cities in the world these days, Hiroshima has a tourist bus which does a circuit of the city and you can get on and off at various landmarks. We used this here and in Nagoya, although the Nagoya one didn't quite work out as planned, but I'm getting ahead of meself.

Hiroshima also has a tram (streetcar) system:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080006-766611365.jpeg)

The bus soon arrived at the site in the centre of Hiroshima. Originally the Hiroshima Prefectural Commercial Exhibition Hall, the Genbaku Dome was re-named the Atomic or A-Bomb Dome after the war.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080006-766611852.jpeg)

The first thought that came into my head was "My God, this is IT. I'm actually standing at Ground Zero. This is really where it happened. Total obliteration in a matter of seconds."

It was a very sombre and sobering experience. It may have just been my mood, but despite there being parties of schoolkids everywhere, and being in the heart of a busy city, the place was strangely quiet.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080237-76682475.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080008-766731814.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080008-766732473.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080010-766751286.jpeg)

A sign nearby gives the details. The photo of the dome and the surrounding city just after the event is staggering. I found it hard to believe I was actually standing there.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080237-76682682.jpeg)

The river in the photo on the sign is still there, of course, and the proximity of the dome to modern day Hiroshima is obvious from these photos:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080012-766762315.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080239-76684516.jpeg)

Nearby is the Memorial Peace Park.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080013-766771908.jpeg)

Which had a party of schoolkids singing respectfully while we were there:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080240-766862412.jpeg)

There are thousands of paper cranes, which people send in from all over the world:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080239-76684407.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080014-766782431.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080015-766801960.jpeg)

All up, a moody and different morning. I basically couldn't believe I was standing right at the very spot the A-bomb dropped. Weird, almost.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080015-766801336.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080241-76686813.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080242-766881995.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-270419080242-76688291.jpeg)

Anyway, next, a bit more upbeat - reunited with Bealette in Kyoto, home of - wait for it, train fans - Kyoto Railway Museum!!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Malc on April 28, 2019, 05:08:22 PM
Fascinating George, if a bit puzzling. I would have expected a deep crater, then I remembered the Fat Boy exploded about 2000 ft in the air.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 28, 2019, 10:08:36 PM
Yes indeed, Malc. As it says on the sign, 600m above, 160m SE of the dome.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 29, 2019, 07:21:51 AM
.....We had a couple of days available before meeting up with Bealette again in Kyoto, so we stayed over a night in Okayama, to see a bit more of Japan. At the risk of offending our Japanese resident member Railsquid, I'm not sure why we did - as far as I saw, the city didn't seem to have a lot to see! Sort of like travelling from London to Edinburgh and having a stop over at say, my home town  :-\

Anyway, just a quick return to Hiroshima....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064236-767191422.jpeg)

This area of the Peace Park has apparently steps leading down to a book depository which has names of the 300,000 plus people who have died either directly or indirectly of the effects of the bomb to date.

In Okayama, we stayed at a JR Hotel Granvia again, and being up-market, there was always a paper waiting outside your door in the morning. Anyway, they must check with reception, 'cos ours was always in English!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064243-767291167.jpeg)

Anyway, on the front page was a story about all of the books being exhumed and brought to the surface to dry out as they tend to get damp (see picture). That happened the day after our visit. Interesting co-incidence, I thought.

A couple of shots from the Shinkansen enroute to Okayama.... I've included the first shot not because of the castle just beyond the station platform, but because of the yellow studs and grooves which are on the platform.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064236-767191583.jpeg)

These bloody things are everywhere in Japan, and to be honest, Bealman found them to be a damn nuisance. My painful ankle didn't help, but I found wheeled luggage getting caught in the grooves and generally causing grief. I'm not all at all sure of their purpose or function. One for @railsquid (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=3832) ?

Another personal impression.... I found the settlement all the way down the east coast from Tokyo to Hiroshima as seen from the Shinkansen to be almost one continuous urban conurbation. Here is a rare bit of greenery, and you can see what I assume to be a superhighway on the bridge in the distance.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064238-767211015.jpeg)

Anyway, the speedy train arrived in Okayama. Here it is at the station, with the hotel in the background:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064238-767212086.jpeg)

Those orange things in the ground are prominent yet again! Technical shot showing power transfer between cars:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064239-767231873.jpeg)

Here is the view from our hotel window. Now if you can tell the difference from the view in Hiroshima, well done..... 'cos I'm not sure I can!  :hmmm:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064239-767231512.jpeg)

There is even a bus station right outside!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064240-767251220.jpeg)

Anyway, darkness fell, and we went out in search of a feed.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064242-767261837.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064240-767251640.jpeg)

We ate at an Indian restaurant, but here we go with another Bealman interpretation.... I got the impression that whenever the Japanese try to do food which well, isn't Japanese, they do it the way they think it should be. The Indian food we had looked and tasted like what they THOUGHT Indian food looks and tastes like. We saw an Italian restaurant, but once again, there was a definite Japanese tinge to the menu - the Japanese idea of Italian food. It's hard to explain, but that was Bealman's impression.

Anyway, we ended up in a local pub - The Rover's Return this definitely was not!  :beers:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064242-76727143.jpeg)

....continued.....

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 29, 2019, 07:59:46 AM
.....We had a couple of days available before meeting up with Bealette again in Kyoto, so we stayed over a night in Okayama, to see a bit more of Japan. At the risk of offending our Japanese resident member Railsquid, I'm not sure why we did - as far as I saw, the city didn't seem to have a lot to see! Sort of like travelling from London to Edinburgh and having a stop over at say, my home town  :-\

If memory serves correctly, Okayama is home to one of Japan's Three Megafamous Gardens.

If memory also serves correctly, I got off there once, nosed around the station and decided I had more interesting places to go.

A couple of shots from the Shinkansen enroute to Okayama.... I've included the first shot not because of the castle just beyond the station platform, but because of the yellow studs and grooves which are on the platform.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064236-767191583.jpeg)

These bloody things are everywhere in Japan, and to be honest, Bealman found them to be a damn nuisance. My painful ankle didn't help, but I found wheeled luggage getting caught in the grooves and generally causing grief. I'm not all at all sure of their purpose or function. One for @railsquid (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=3832) ?

Stand one one of those lines long enough and a blind person with a white stick will bump into you.


Another personal impression.... I found the settlement all the way down the east coast from Tokyo to Hiroshima as seen from the Shinkansen to be almost one continuous urban conurbation.

That's because it is... the topography of Japan, which is about 90% uninhabitable mountains, means everything is squashed into the few bit which are flat, especially along the Pacfic coast... One reason why the original Shinkansen is so successful as it links the main population centres in a single line.


We ate at an Indian restaurant, but here we go with another Bealman interpretation.... I got the impression that whenever the Japanese try to do food which well, isn't Japanese, they do it the way they think it should be. The Indian food we had looked and tasted like what they THOUGHT Indian food looks and tastes like. We saw an Italian restaurant, but once again, there was a definite Japanese tinge to the menu - the Japanese idea of Italian food. It's hard to explain, but that was Bealman's impression.

Here's a funny thing - I went to China once, and the food there was not in the least like any Chinese food I'd experienced in Europe or Japan...

Most of the "Indian" restaurants in Japan seem to be owned by Nepalis anyway (something to do with historically relaxed immigration regulations for Nepal). Some are more authentic than others.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 29, 2019, 08:04:57 AM
That's cleared up a few things!

Thanks mate!   :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: tutenkhamunsleeping on April 29, 2019, 08:43:27 AM
Stand one one of those lines long enough and a blind person with a white stick will bump into you.

Cool! Does it work like the Faller Car System? :no:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 29, 2019, 09:16:20 AM
I think Squiddy means that it's for the blind. Their white sticks are guided by the grooves and they stop at the studs.

I didn't work that out when I was there.

I'm not sure the comparison to the Faller road system is the best analogy!

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on April 29, 2019, 10:05:51 AM
As an aside, I recall having an Indian meal in a restaurant just off Memphis Airport and it tasted nothing like what I would have expected. I was told that's because many of the spices used in Indian cooking were not allowed into the country. I can't imagine that happening in Japan, though?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 29, 2019, 11:07:25 AM
They'd be expecting you to eat Cajun  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Invicta Alec on April 29, 2019, 12:49:42 PM

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054020-763042206.jpeg)

By the way, the food in the window is plastic, not real. One of the cool things about Japan is that just about every eatery you go to, you know what you're getting before you order - you can look at the plastic version in the window!


These plastic models of the dishes were a godsend when I was in Tokyo thirty odd years ago. No way could I read any menus. Just to be able to point at one of them and get fed was brilliant!

I do however remember one Japanese gentleman sitting close by slurping a large bowl of soup. While he was obviously enjoying it I was a little concerned that it actually had little things darting about in it. I kid you not.  :o

Alec.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on April 29, 2019, 04:15:16 PM
Quote
Even the island's electrical supply was tidy compared to the mess under Bealman's layout!

very tidy compared to Thailand
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/4863-290419160336.jpeg) (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=gallery;sa=view&id=76796)
But  vietnam must  be the  winner  at electrickery knitting
(http://www.gregorharih.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/hanoi-1-960x640.jpg)

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: dannyboy on April 29, 2019, 04:23:20 PM
That second picture reminds me of something.  :hmmm:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: njee20 on April 29, 2019, 04:34:19 PM
Here's a funny thing - I went to China once, and the food there was not in the least like any Chinese food I'd experienced in Europe or Japan...

Most of the "Indian" restaurants in Japan seem to be owned by Nepalis anyway (something to do with historically relaxed immigration regulations for Nepal). Some are more authentic than others.

Exactly the same here, most "Indian" restaurants are usually Bangladeshi and most 'foreign' cuisine bears little resemblance to what is actually served in the native country. Makes sense - it's catering for the local (as in national) tastes. The idea of a Japanese Italian makes me shudder though. I'm imagining sushi pizzas.

Why do you keep referring to yourself in the 3rd person Bealman? I've never noticed that before.

edit: sorry, njee20's never noticed that before ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on April 29, 2019, 04:53:12 PM
Quote
it's catering for the local (as in national) tastes.
not always the case.The best indian meal ive had was in phonsovan,but no way could they make a vindaloo  hot enough to satisfy the locals,well not without asbestos plates.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 29, 2019, 11:12:34 PM

Why do you keep referring to yourself in the 3rd person Bealman? I've never noticed that before.

edit: sorry, njee20's never noticed that before ;)

Comes from reading too many J. P. Donleavy books  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 30, 2019, 01:41:47 AM
That second picture reminds me of something.  :hmmm:

It certainly looks like the underside of my layout, for sure!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 30, 2019, 02:07:04 AM
Next day dawned bright, so back to the station to catch the Shinkansen to Kyoto. This was our last stay in a "western" style hotel, so goodbye Granvia (there's those yellow grooves again, but now their function has been explained, it's obvious. It never occurred to stupid Bealman here, though! How long have they been a feature of Japanese life, Squiddy?):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064246-76733299.jpeg)

In the morning sunshine, Okayama didn't seem such a bad place:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064245-76731504.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064245-76731948.jpeg)

And I got to see a couple of Shinkansens in different liveries:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064244-76729443.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064246-767332390.jpeg)

Plus this beastie, before being whisked away to Kyoto in total comfort and speeds we were becoming quite accustomed to.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025359-768111547.jpeg)

....continued
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 30, 2019, 04:40:32 AM
Next day dawned bright, so back to the station to catch the Shinkansen to Kyoto. This was our last stay in a "western" style hotel, so goodbye Granvia (there's those yellow grooves again, but now their function has been explained, it's obvious. It never occurred to stupid Bealman here, though! How long have they been a feature of Japanese life, Squiddy?):

Good question; I certainly remember them from my first visit in 1993. I'd guess they started becoming prevalent sometime in the 1980s but don't quote me on that.

And I got to see a couple of Shinkansens in different liveries:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-280419064244-76729443.jpeg)

For the record, this is the still futuristic-looking 500 series, introduced over 20 years ago so by Japanese standards it's clapped out and reduced to running short-formation "local" services in western Japan. I think they are scheduled for retirement in the next couple of years.

You were lucky to have visited before they painted one in Hello Kitty colours.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 30, 2019, 05:08:30 AM
Oh, it was one of those! I saw that Hello Kitty one on here, I think.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on April 30, 2019, 05:59:42 AM
Oh, it was one of those! I saw that Hello Kitty one on here, I think.

Available in N scale from Tomix (https://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/98662.html), of course. It would look just spiffing trundling through the Castle Beal & Eden scenery, no doubt.

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on April 30, 2019, 06:20:56 AM
Want one!  :drool:

Must have a word with Bealette.....  ;D

Ooops, forgot - she's home now  :(
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 02, 2019, 04:50:33 AM
The Bealman accommodation in Kyoto was in the form of an apartment, and like Bealette's apartment, was well, tiny.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025401-76812200.jpeg)

As it says on the sign, these things could be rented on a monthly basis, but I think calling them "mansions" was pushing the imagination a bit. The apartment did, however have a washing machine, so clothes were given a welcome wash - that's Bealman's washing in the pic above! Like what seemed to me to be most of the population of Japan, we hung the washing on the balcony to dry:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025400-768122404.jpeg)

To give Bealette a little bit of respite from her cramped living quarters, we booked her into a more spacious place a couple of doors down from us:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030005-7682676.jpeg)

I thought the name was kinda welcoming!

Anyway, first stop, Kyoto Tower, across the road from the station. The views from the top are splendid.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025402-768141285.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025402-76814996.jpeg)

As can be seen above, Kyoto also has an aquarium, but having been to the one in Osaka, we gave that a miss.

There were all sorts to be seen from up there - including my washing! (to the left of the second fire escape)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025404-768162068.jpeg)

But also the railway cutting it's way through the city - a Shinkansen and a local train visible here:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030134-768311369.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030134-768311898.jpeg)

Some sort of large shrine located in the central area:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030131-768271079.jpeg)

And yes, Kyoto also has it's own Hotel Granvia:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030133-768291518.jpeg)

A thing which constantly got to me and was the overpowering impression that I took away with me from Japan, was the sheer population density in these urban areas. I did get used to it, but at times found it quite stifling. I think this photo gives some idea of what I mean:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030131-768272113.jpeg)

And as railsquid says, one city sort of blends in to the next - that's Bealette's city of Osaka in the distance!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419030133-768291438.jpeg)

Anyway, we eventually headed off to explore further, but first we had to descend from the tower. I thought it nice of them to let us know which way to go:  :D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025405-768181635.jpeg)

The plan was that next day, while I would go to the railway museum, Bealette and her mum would explore the temples and Buddas in those distant hills. You can imagine the walk to get there!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025404-768151452.jpeg)

Kyoto too, has it's own version of the Shambles. Bealette was leading us to a park.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025407-768202163.jpeg)

Don't let the kimonos fool you. Bealette said they were tourist kimonos and the girls wearing them were speaking Chinese.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025406-76818656.jpeg)

On we went:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025408-768211125.jpeg)

Until we arrived at an impressive park:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025409-76823799.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025410-768242252.jpeg)

Which also had this prominent sign. At the time, I was able to upload this straight to the forum and send it off to NewportNobby, who managed to get most of the meaning correct, except for the first one - suggesting that you weren't to touch the coffins!  ;D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025409-768231559.jpeg)

Anyway, by then it was time to head home. Throughout this day, I was impressed by Bealette's navigational skills, but she was a local, I guess!


She and her mum certainly did their best to leave Bealman behind on the way! By then me ankle was playing up - that's my story  ;)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025359-767981063.jpeg)

Next.... Kyoto Railway Museum - a most most impressive new facility.




 
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 02, 2019, 05:09:31 AM
Tell us more about the UFO visitation in the last picture, I don't recall hearing about that on the news.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 02, 2019, 05:32:11 AM
 ;D

Looks a bit like that, doesn't it?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 02, 2019, 06:25:04 AM
Impressive photos of the temples and the japanese version of the nrm and shildon.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 02, 2019, 09:42:05 AM
Smashing pics, George, but, by heck, you've put some timber on. Those 'Y' fronts are ginormous! :goggleeyes:


that's Bealman's washing in the pic

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-300419025400-768122404.jpeg)


Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 02, 2019, 10:06:59 AM
They're me shirts yer duffer  :P
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 02, 2019, 10:40:33 AM
Must be an Aussie thing.

 :P

I am, however, thoroughly enjoying the tales of a weary traveller. It's a fascinating insight into a country I'm completely ignorant of.

Please continue.

 :thankyousign:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 02, 2019, 10:51:21 AM
Thank you!

Railway content about to increase.

I've enjoyed member's travelogues over the years, as I see places I may not live to see, but with a personal slant.

@MinZaPint (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=523) , are you reading this?!

I try to provide a tongue-in-cheek account of my travels to forum members. You never know, some of my pics of the prototype might stimulate the idea for a model!

But looking again at my pics and wanderings, I somehow doubt it.  :beers:

George
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: MinZaPint on May 02, 2019, 01:24:11 PM
Hello George, yep I'm enjoying following along, Japan is a country I've not been to so your story is very informative. On another front your team are doing quite well this season. they played my pal Eddie's team (Portsmouth) the other day with a crowd of over 41,000! 4th highest only 3 Premier league matches were higher.
Best wishes  David
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Malc on May 02, 2019, 06:39:27 PM
But it was a 1-1 draw.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Lawrence on May 02, 2019, 07:01:22 PM
George, just wanted to thank you for all the work you have put in posting these pics and recounting your trials and tribulations. It has been a fascinating insight for me and I'm most grateful to you.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: JonHarbour on May 03, 2019, 05:56:46 AM
Very cool thread George. Love it.

I've always felt the need to visit Ground Zero at Hiroshima (and also Auschwitz) - two places everybody should see and comprehend the full horror of what happened there.

I went to Tokyo for work in 2010 and it was fascinating. Will definitely go back when Little Miss is older.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 04, 2019, 05:45:04 AM
Monday morning dawned, sunny and HOT.Bealette and her mum headed off in the opposite direction to Bealman, to look at temples. Bealman had his own mission - the new Kyoto Railway Museum.

I had no credit on my phone (no Vodafone here, apparently), so no GPS (I was able to keep up a fairly current commentary to NewportNobby by posting stuff when I had free WiFi access). I had earlier downloaded an app called MAPS.ME which gave me a reasonable degree of navigation.

The museum didn't seem too hard to find, nor all that far from our accommodation...... WRONG! Anyway, a totally ill-informed Bealman set off...

First part, straight down a very busy main street:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010458-76912972.jpeg)

To give some idea of the distance, the apartments were a fair distance on the other side of the Kyoto Tower, and I was only halfway!  :worried:

Plus, navigation was becoming more of a hit-and-miss exercise, involving non-descript streets:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010500-76923539.jpeg)

Both the heat and my dodgy ankle were beginning to bother me, when I finally arrived at a park, next to..... the bloody Aquarium! >:(

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010500-769231127.jpeg)

By now, I was getting very uncomfortable and frustrated, and the signs weren't much help....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010501-7692415.jpeg)

Then I saw a few trams sitting in the park a bit further on. Thinking that was encouraging, I wandered a bit further. Then, out of nowhere....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010502-76925923.jpeg)

Dunno how you could ever miss it, though.... it's huge - multiple levels, it's own roundhouse with a fleet of fully maintained steam locomotives, and full connection to the nearby mainlines.

In short - Bealman heaven  :heart2:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 04, 2019, 06:39:32 AM
Monday morning dawned, sunny and HOT.Bealette and her mum headed off in the opposite direction to Bealman, to look at temples. Bealman had his own mission - the new Kyoto Railway Museum.

I had no credit on my phone (no Vodafone here, apparently)

There was, actually, up until about 15 or years ago, not that that would have helped you much.

Plus, navigation was becoming more of a hit-and-miss exercise, involving non-descript streets:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010500-76923539.jpeg)

On my first ever trip to Japan (this was before even Vodafone set foot here), let alone I had a short homestay in a residential area full of non-descript streets, and as road names are not really a big thing in Japan I made sure to note some prominent local landmarks such as a nearby temple-or-shrine (I forget which), toddled off for a walk by myself, and on the way back congratulated myself on finding the temple-or-shrine, then was utterly baffled not to find my hosts house where it should have been. Because, it turned out after much sweaty wandering around in rectangles, there were two very similar-looking temples-or-shrines close by.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on May 04, 2019, 06:42:30 AM
Quote
I had no credit on my phone (no Vodafone here, apparently), so no GPS
Before leaving the safety of the hotels free wifi zone download the bit of google maps your visiting , mark any places you want to visit. Just before your leaving the safe zone start the navigation to wherever your heading for,turn off the wifi and off ya go.The gps should work without internet access,and with the downloaded map you'll have an idea of exactly  were your lost.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 04, 2019, 07:19:01 AM
Yes, I found meself walking around in circles a few times over there!

It's been a year ago now, but if I recall, that's the way that app worked... you loaded the map before you set out.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on May 04, 2019, 08:13:11 AM
sound like you had a good time in Kyoto, even if you thought you were getting lost. A feeling I had as well, although I was only there for about 8hrs, even then had to sit on a bench for about an hour of that because I twisted my ankle and it blew up to about twice the size. Never got to the Railway museum, something for a trip sometime in the future.

loving the blog George.

cheers
Graham
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on May 04, 2019, 08:44:47 AM
This is terrific stuff, George.

Thank you very much.

I'm looking forward to the next instalment.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 04, 2019, 08:59:38 AM
Glad folks are enjoying it!  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: tutenkhamunsleeping on May 04, 2019, 09:22:04 AM
Because, it turned out after much sweaty wandering around in rectangles, there were two very similar-looking temples-or-shrines close by.

The Tomytec factor :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 04, 2019, 11:25:02 AM
What's the Tomytec factor?  ??? :hmmm:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: cornish yorkie on May 04, 2019, 09:24:56 PM
 :hellosign:  :greatpicturessign:
    Many thanks George, following with interest
        regards Derek.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 05, 2019, 05:38:25 AM
.....once through the main entrance, one is immediately confronted by the original Shinkansen:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050413-76971148.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050410-76967155.jpeg)

It's quite easy to see where the name "Bullet Train" came from. There was an exhibit further in showing the construction of the original nose cone and pantagraphs.

Also in the entrance foyer was this kettle:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050408-769552473.jpeg)

....looking at the almost Southern type wheels, it could have been a Bulleid design!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050411-76969770.jpeg)

There was also this, which looks to Bealman like some commuter or branch railcar set:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050410-769672100.jpeg)

So far, none of this is in the museum proper, and Bealman was not sure what was happening here - looks like some form of eatery:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050411-76969694.jpeg)

Just to show off my knowledge to Squiddy, I'll include this locomotive:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050412-769711691.jpeg)

It's DO54 Type#33, the first Japanese medium sized diesel locomotive, introduced in 1971.

Likewise this Columbia type tank loco - the oldest, introduced in 1902:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050414-769732144.jpeg)

The further one ventured, more wonders awaited:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050414-769731360.jpeg)

Plus a few surprises - a model of Stephenson's Rocket:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050415-769751220.jpeg)

...and Locomotion! I used to clamber all over that as a kid, when it was on display at Darlington Banktop station! It was still there during my college days, but has since been moved, I believe.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050415-769751858.jpeg)

This early electric locomotive could almost be of American or Swiss design:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050417-769771162.jpeg)

...and contrasts sharply with the sleek lines of this West Japan JR500 Shinkansen (which railsquid tells me is already 20 year old):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050418-769796.jpeg)

I thought this two-wheeled carriage to be, well, different:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050417-769772500.jpeg)

....while I presume this is some sort of guard's van:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050419-769791112.jpeg)

...and this covered wagon has a decidedly British look to it:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050420-76981597.jpeg)

There are many interactive exhibits in the museum, more of which in a future installment. However, this gandy dancer was popular with the youngsters:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050420-769811865.jpeg)

....and a novel way to cross the tracks:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050421-769831044.jpeg)

....To be continued......
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 05, 2019, 08:44:09 AM
Thanks for the latest instalment george. Glad you found the japanese version of the nrm, the bullet shinkansen, rocket and locomotion
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on May 05, 2019, 09:12:05 AM
Hi George,

Great pics. Looks like a lovely Museum and looking forward to more.

I still prefer the first Bullet train. I don't really like the new 'space like' ones. They're similar in Spain with their stupid (to me) duck noses. Just looks wrong.

Great stuff.

Cheers weave  :beers:

PS. As football was mentioned earlier, thought I'd just say may the best team win when my Pompey and your Sunderland face each other yet again. Both Big Chickened up and both shouldn't have let Barnsley and Charlton be above us. 'Tis the beautiful game I suppose.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 05, 2019, 09:18:05 AM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

All good, mate. Hope the gate is just as good!  :thumbsup:

Glad you're enjoying my Nippon adventure.  :beers:

George
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 05, 2019, 12:41:24 PM
Thanks for the great pics, George.
Not sure about the 'gandy dancer', though :confused2:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gandy_dancer
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 05, 2019, 11:11:37 PM
Dunno.... I thought that's what those hand powered railcarts were called?

Even though this one had pedals anorl.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 06, 2019, 05:39:06 AM
....anyway, regardless of what they're called, Bealman continued to be surrounded by Japanese locomotive history....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050421-769831800.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050423-769851842.jpeg)

An Osaka train!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050408-769552353.jpeg)

Not sure what the beasties in the above pics are, but maybe railsquid can enlighten us?

However, I'm pretty sure that this is the prototype of my first ever Kato model that I bought in Tokyo the day we left:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050423-76985201.jpeg)

Seems to be a similarity? Here is the intruder running on the Beal & Castle Eden when I got home, along with other intruders, including a wagon from this very museum:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/66/255-250618092614.jpeg)

There were numerous genuine cabs on display, which you could sit at and play with the controls. This is a diesel, I believe.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051216-77038631.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051218-770451624.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051217-77045734.jpeg)

This is the cab from the original (O Series) Shinkansen, which I was informed has the master control handle reversed from conventional lines:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051219-77047643.jpeg)

And then this quite amazing cockpit from a DE10 type diesel, where the driver sits sideways to the motion of the train!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051219-77047276.jpeg)

Here is "The Tailights Express", whatever that is  ???

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051220-77049123.jpeg)

These views give an idea of the layout of the main interior part of the museum:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051220-770491114.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051221-770512262.jpeg)

At one end of the upper concourse was a large HO layout which was only operated at certain times, apparently.The only thing moving at the time was the railcar on the single line at the front that was shuttling from one end to the other on automatic. But the layout had a roundhouse (Fleischmann turntable by the looks of it, though) and an impressive control panel:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051222-770511574.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051223-77053888.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051223-77053234.jpeg)

Don't ask me what all this stuff is about..... I assume some sort of railway related entertainment from the seventies and eighties, by the look of it.....  :worried:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051224-770551013.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051216-7703839.jpeg)

....to be continued......






Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 06, 2019, 06:03:13 AM
Posting from a train museum right  now (waiting for the Squidlet to finish eating), so no fancy quoting, but the big red diesel is a DD51 (Bo-Bo-Bo), yours IIRC is a DD13 (Bo-Bo)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 06, 2019, 06:15:51 AM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Thanks! What museum would that be, then? Hope squidlet enjoys his snack! :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Malc on May 06, 2019, 09:56:40 AM
I have a DD51 and which is a lovely runner, except it didnít like the code 80 points on my layout. Hence I now have used Kato tracks. To be honest, that wasnít the only reason for the change. Excellent story George. By the way, I remember climbing on Locomotion on Bank Top Station. It is now in the North Road Railway Museum at Darlington.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 06, 2019, 10:06:51 AM
Thanks,  Malc!  :thumbsup:

My track is Code 80 too, but runs over the points OK.

Ok, three of them. Didn't check the rest!  :D

As to North Road Museum, dunno.... is that nearby? (the station)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 06, 2019, 10:13:56 AM
... without boring folk, I hope, heaps to come.... the Toyota museum , Nagoya - which, heaven forbid was possibly better than the railway museum!

Nagoya science museum also, along with excursions into not-so-urban areas.  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 06, 2019, 03:24:19 PM
... without boring folk, I hope, heaps to come.... the Toyota museum , Nagoya - which, heaven forbid was possibly better than the railway museum!

Nagoya science museum also, along with excursions into not-so-urban areas.  :beers:

I've not yet been to any of the transport/science museums mentioned in this thread so all of interest.  :thumbsup: :beers:

....anyway, regardless of what they're called, Bealman continued to be surrounded by Japanese locomotive history....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050423-769851842.jpeg)

An EF66 1500v DC Bo-Bo-Bo locomotive introduced in the late 1960s for high-speed freight between Tokyo and western Japan, in latter days they also hauled sleeper trains. Two are still in service, just about.


An Osaka train!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050408-769552353.jpeg)

Not sure what the beasties in the above pics are, but maybe railsquid can enlighten us?

The orange EMU is a 101 series, the first "modern" commuter train in post-war Japan, introduced 1957-ish, these and the similar-looking 103 series were common sights on the national commuter network until the early 2000s, a few from later production runs still survive in service.


There were numerous genuine cabs on display, which you could sit at and play with the controls. This is a diesel, I believe.
(...)
And then this quite amazing cockpit from a DE10 type diesel, where the driver sits sideways to the motion of the train!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051219-77047276.jpeg)

What doesn't seem to be apparent is that the DE10 has two of these cockpits, on either side; these locos were designed for shunting and end-to-end trip work; the sideways orientation apparently makes it easier to change direction, and two cockpits so the driver could sit on the left side when running forwards. See pic here for a hint of the layout:

https://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/kokutethu/18791256.html (https://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/kokutethu/18791256.html)


Here is "The Tailights Express", whatever that is  ???

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051220-77049123.jpeg)


Looks like the tailcar of the former Twilight Express (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twilight_Express) sleeper train.

Don't ask me what all this stuff is about..... I assume some sort of railway related entertainment from the seventies and eighties, by the look of it.....  :worried:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-060519051224-770551013.jpeg)


Songs with railway-related themes.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 06, 2019, 03:33:17 PM
Posting from a train museum right  now (waiting for the Squidlet to finish eating), so no fancy quoting, but the big red diesel is a DD51 (Bo-Bo-Bo), yours IIRC is a DD13 (Bo-Bo)

I must correct myself, the DD51 is Bo-2-Bo.

I have a DD51 and which is a lovely runner, except it didnít like the code 80 points on my layout. Hence I now have used Kato tracks. To be honest, that wasnít the only reason for the change.

I occasionally run into issues with the centre bogie on Japanese Bo-Bo-Bo/Bo-2-Bo locos as they are held in place against the track with a large spring, and are potentially prone to "tripping ip" over track the leading power bogie passes over.  Worth checking that the spring is in place and doing its job, and that the wheelset back-to-backs are adjusted correctly.

The centre bogie on the DD51 has quite small wheels, which may not have helped.


Thanks,  Malc!  :thumbsup:

My track is Code 80 too, but runs over the points OK.

Ok, three of them. Didn't check the rest!  :D

Like I said, yours is (I think) a  DD13, certainly a Bo-Bo so different kettle of sushi.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 06, 2019, 04:00:16 PM
....anyway, regardless of what they're called, Bealman continued to be surrounded by Japanese locomotive history....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050421-769831800.jpeg)


The multiple unit here is a KiHa 81 (variant of the KiHa 80), a long-distance express DMU. In service between ca. 1960 and 1978.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: grumbeast on May 06, 2019, 04:38:59 PM
Bealman!

  This whole thread is wonderful There is no risk of people being bored I don't think  I'm certainly living vicariously through your adventure until my family can afford to go (we've started saving, and it will be a little cheaper now we live on the west coast). 

PLUS

you posted a pic of an EF66 .. possibly my all-time worldwide favourite electric locomotive :) As a little boy I had a book with a pic of one of these in it and thought it was the best thing ever even before I knew anything about Japanese railways

So.. keep posting.. looking forward to more

thanks!

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 06, 2019, 11:15:38 PM
So glad you're enjoying it, grumbeast.  :thumbsup:

Japan is definitely different and worth a visit!

Thanks too, for all the clarification, railsquid. I knew I could rely on you to fill in the details!  :beers:

One ommision though.... what did Squidlet have for lunch?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 06, 2019, 11:37:38 PM

Thanks too, for all the clarification, railsquid. I knew I could rely on you to fill in the details!  :beers:

One ommision though.... what did Squidlet have for lunch?



Some bread:
(http://japan-train-blog.infogogo.com/static/misc/squidlet-2019-05-06a.jpg)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 07, 2019, 12:56:06 AM
And two big machines in the background!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 07, 2019, 04:17:59 AM
I'm afraid I couldn't understand the Yahoo blog, as the translator said Ooops. I got the idea from the picture, though.

That twilight express looks great! Shame it's discontinued. Sapporo was in my original plan, but of course it never happened. Going on that train would have been an adventure in itself!

Discontinued on economic grounds, I guess?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 07, 2019, 05:14:33 AM
And two big machines in the background!  :thumbsup:

See here (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=34527.msg567180#msg567180) for more pictures.

I'm afraid I couldn't understand the Yahoo blog, as the translator said Ooops. I got the idea from the picture, though.

It was the best picture I could find  of the cab interior showing the presence of both control panels.

That twilight express looks great! Shame it's discontinued. Sapporo was in my original plan, but of course it never happened. Going on that train would have been an adventure in itself!

Discontinued on economic grounds, I guess?

Yup, the market for long-distance overnight travel has shifted to cheap buses at the lower end of the market, and expensive luxury resort trains at the upper end. Also the opening of the Hokkaido Shinkansen has reduced the number of paths available for non-freight/non-Shinkansen trains through the tunnel between Hokkaido and Honshu. I do now regret not trying a proper loco-hauled sleeper service while they were still running, it just never occurred to me at the time.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 07, 2019, 06:41:59 AM
....Kyoto Museum continued.....

Probably the most popular interactive exhibit in the museum was the Shinkansen simulator....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060313-77082173.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060317-770881727.jpeg)

All EIGHT of 'em!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060317-770881043.jpeg)

No, Bealman did not have a go (as much as he desperately wanted to), because they were extremely popular and possibly a little too complicated for him anyway  :worried:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060318-770901425.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060319-770901335.jpeg)

Like most things of this nature, it seemed a bit expensive for the allocated time on it. So, moving along the concourse....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060322-770941289.jpeg)

....I came across a more traditional kind of simulator - a "U-Drive" layout similar to ones many people at model railway exhibitions across the world put on for youngsters - only this one was a lot bigger!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060320-770921335.jpeg)

Once again I didn't have a go on it, even though the queues weren't massive. People already on there seemed to be concentrating very hard!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060320-770921106.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060321-770941994.jpeg)

There were other interactive things which I found just as, if not more interesting - signals and points!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060331-77106520.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060332-7710871.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060333-771082411.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060313-77082339.jpeg)

Anyway, one of the major strengths of this museum (particularly on a beautiful day weatherwise) is the outdoor areas and exhibits. The Skydeck had a wonderful vista of the city and main railway lines:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060323-77096304.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060323-77096837.jpeg)

A great view of the extensive yard and Kyoto Tower:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060324-77098371.jpeg)

...and of course lots of action out on the mainlines. There was even a signalman's information screen showing what trains you were looking at, updated in realtime!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060327-77100965.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060328-771021768.jpeg)

Here a train heads into Kyoto on the local lines. The sheer density of housing and apartments is again seen in the background:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060325-77098252.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060327-771002419.jpeg)

The museum also operates an engine in steam, which of course you can ride on. It can be just seen here, while a commuter train hurries above it.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060328-771021654.jpeg)

Another commuter heads into Kyoto:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060330-77104885.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060330-771041503.jpeg)

While a Shinkansen accelerates quickly away on the high speed line.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-070519060331-77106523.jpeg)

Next.... the roundhouse!!



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on May 07, 2019, 08:34:57 AM
Thank you for these super pictures, George.

Was this a 'normal' day at the museum?  The National Railway Museum (now, just Railway Museum - why?!) has big queues and a locomotive in steam, but only on special days.  It does have the signallers' screens, though, and these appear to work most of the time.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 07, 2019, 08:45:16 AM
Kyoto had a train in steam everyday according to the English signage, but if that continues during winter, I don't know.

I do know that the steam locomotives are lovingly cared for, just like in the UK.

I didn't know they'd dropped the N from the NRM. Like yourself, why?

More on the steam display soon!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 08, 2019, 05:33:09 AM
.....From the Skydeck, a longish flight of steps led down to the turntable/roundhouse/steam train ride area. This was a very impressive facility, with many preserved locomotives, none of which were identifiable to Bealman (although the orange one looked like the one I saw inside, though probably is a totally different class):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042652-771441714.jpeg)

I got a close up look at the loco in steam, while yet another local train clattered overhead:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042654-77147752.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042655-77149971.jpeg)

This beastie was sitting on a yard track, I'm still not sure if that belonged to the museum or not. Do Japan still use diesel shunters? Suppose they do, but when I come to think about it, I don't think I saw a single freight train in three weeks!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042654-771471421.jpeg)

The roundhouse area is quite accessible, and visitors are allowed to wander around as they please:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042652-77144528.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042655-7714959.jpeg)

As stated earlier, the steam collection is quite extensive, and lovingly preserved:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042656-771512233.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042657-77151954.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042658-7715359.jpeg)

Maintenance was in progress while Bealman was there:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042659-771551653.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042700-77157890.jpeg)

Mind you, I think this machine is in need of a plumber rather than a railwayman!! Very much like an American locomotive, with all the plumbing on the outside.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042658-771532268.jpeg)

Talking of American locos, this one apparently hails from Pittsburgh! Mind you it was beautifully polished and the huge cowcatcher certainly impressed Bealman.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042700-771571290.jpeg)

The guy with the bag in this picture took a liking to me and was obviously a train enthusiast, pointing to stuff and babbling excitedly as he did so. I didn't understand a word of course, but bowed politely at every second sentence or so. Bowing had become quite natural to me by now, and I often found myself doing it in shops and hotel receptions.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042659-771551311.jpeg)

Anyway, by now the time was getting on, and Bealman was getting thirsty. So a quick dart back through the museum, and a look in the shop. Plenty of Kato:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010458-769121105.jpeg)

And Tomix:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010508-76929708.jpeg)

I refrained from splurging, although as I had bought a souvenir N gauge wagon in Minatur Wunderland in Hamburg, I felt obliged to pick up a similar souvenir of Kyoto.

I briefly paused at this curiosity on the way out - I assume it represents a railway kiosk from the seventies, but it caught my eye because of the red phone. When I arrived in Australia in 1974, they were everywhere!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-030519010506-76927295.jpeg)

Now for the long walk back and to find a pub on the way.....

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 08, 2019, 07:14:19 AM
.....From the Skydeck, a longish flight of steps led down to the turntable/roundhouse/steam train ride area. This was a very impressive facility, with many preserved locomotives, none of which were identifiable to Bealman (although the orange one looked like the one I saw inside, though probably is a totally different class):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042652-771441714.jpeg)

That is a DE10, the Co-Bo of the sideways cockpits mentioned earlier.

The others are... some kind of kettles. You can tell because they're black.

I got a close up look at the loco in steam, while yet another local train clattered overhead:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042654-77147752.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042655-77149971.jpeg)

A C62, the biggest kettle to run in Japan.

This beastie was sitting on a yard track, I'm still not sure if that belonged to the museum or not. Do Japan still use diesel shunters? Suppose they do, but when I come to think about it, I don't think I saw a single freight train in three weeks!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042654-771471421.jpeg)

Another DE10; they are still in use, as shunters and for short trip workings, though gradually being phased out and replaced by diesel/electic hybrids (thought the basic shape is similar).

Plenty of freight trains if you look in the right place, right now I'm sitting in a branch of Wendy's conveniently overlooking the platform of Tokyo's outer loop/freight avoidance line and have seen half-a-dozen go past in the last hour or o.

Talking of American locos, this one apparently hails from Pittsburgh! Mind you it was beautifully polished and the huge cowcatcher certainly impressed Bealman.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-080519042700-771571290.jpeg)

I'd guess that's from Hokkaido, whose railways were very US-inspired.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 08, 2019, 07:25:35 AM
Once again, a mine of info, Ian.  :thumbsup:

Take a bow, mate.  :beers:

Actually it's probably just as well I didn't know that about the orange diesel. I'd have been tempted to climb up to take a look, and probably got meself into trouble
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on May 08, 2019, 08:53:25 AM
Absolutely super pictures.  The steam locomotives are fascinating.  Imagine running a museum shuttle with a 4-6-4!  The narrow gauge is apparent in these photographs - is it 3'6"?

Thanks again, George (and Ian).

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 08, 2019, 09:05:29 AM
To be perfectly honest John, I never noticed a gauge change at the time! I was sort of wandering around in train gaga land  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 08, 2019, 09:13:48 AM
Absolutely super pictures.  The steam locomotives are fascinating.  Imagine running a museum shuttle with a 4-6-4!  The narrow gauge is apparent in these photographs - is it 3'6"?

Correct, 1067mm Cape Gauge.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 08, 2019, 10:02:44 AM
 :greatpicturessign:

Bowing had become quite natural to me by now

That'll be quite handy if you get to TINGS, George :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 08, 2019, 10:09:08 AM
Just remind me not to say ah so
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: grumbeast on May 08, 2019, 06:15:16 PM
Great pictures, and there's a place I'll need to add to the list of places to visit :)
(Lucky Mrs and Little Grumbeast like museums, they even enjoyed the tank museum in Bovington!)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 11, 2019, 12:39:51 AM
There was also this, which looks to Bealman like some commuter or branch railcar set:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-040519050410-769672100.jpeg)


Now that is a very early 80 series (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/80_series) long(ish) distance EMU, the first such to be introduced in Japan (ca. 1950) and which proved the viability of the EMU as a replacement for services beyond local traffic. These were running long-formation named express trains at their peak.

The later, standard "face" was this:

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/32877415857_a6fb6fb9eb.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/S6gmix)
kato-80-series-kuha86_01 (https://flic.kr/p/S6gmix) by Rail Squid (https://www.flickr.com/photos/railsquid/), on Flickr

and after their withdrawal from top-flight services and allocation to shorter secondary/regional services, a shortage of end cars for the shorter formations led to the addition of commuter EMU-style cabs to intermediate cars like this:

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/47028523554_2fff3ebe96.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/2eDKtB1)
Kato 80 series KuHa85 (https://flic.kr/p/2eDKtB1) by Rail Squid (https://www.flickr.com/photos/railsquid/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 11, 2019, 12:48:20 AM
Thanks!

Used for long haul in their time, eh? Dunno if I'd like to take a long journey in one! They don't look to be the exact epitome of comfort!

I like your models. Do the lights work?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 11, 2019, 01:02:32 AM
Used for long haul in their time, eh? Dunno if I'd like to take a long journey in one! They don't look to be the exact epitome of comfort!

A vast improvement over trailing behind a plume of grit and ashes, methinks, especially considering the vast amounts of tunnels prevalent on the Japanese railway network.

I like your models. Do the lights work?

Indeed, yes, if you look at the photos you can see them lit up :)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 11, 2019, 01:11:41 AM
Used for long haul in their time, eh? Dunno if I'd like to take a long journey in one! They don't look to be the exact epitome of comfort!

A vast improvement over trailing behind a plume of grit and ashes, methinks, especially considering the vast amounts of tunnels prevalent on the Japanese railway network .


And also the relatively low-quality coal available from Japan's mines.

See e.g. this video from 5:00: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqwAw7tf7kU (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqwAw7tf7kU)

(video is about the post-war electrification of a line in northern Japan)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 11, 2019, 01:34:19 AM
And apologies if I keep banging on about this, in today's terms that train may not have been exactly luxurious, but bear in mind this was 1950, when just 5 years earlier the height of luxury was being able to travel *inside* the train ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OpyDVbfdf_I (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OpyDVbfdf_I)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 11, 2019, 02:53:12 AM
Luxury, then!!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 11, 2019, 06:26:05 AM
Sounds like your enjoying the visit to the japanese version of the national railway museum. Have you found the emperor's train.?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 05:59:20 AM
....moving on, with my railway museum visit complete, it was time to retrace my steps back to the apartment. By now, my ankle was playing quite royally, and I'd built up quite a thirst. I'd become very partial to the various brands of Japanese beer (most of them similar in taste and alcohol content to Australian), and was looking forward to a cold one.

One thing that I had noticed over time, though... most of the bars I had encountered so far in the trip basically didn't open until 5pm, some not opening at all on some days. This can be a problem for blokes like me who enjoys a beer with his lunch.  :beers:

Anyway, Kyoto was no such town, and on the way back at around about 3.30pm I discovered this place:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031713-77220333.jpeg)

It is a Yebisu bar, which I believe is a sort of brand name type of pub similar to Weatherspoons in the UK. Anyway, with an hour or so to kill before meeting back with Mrs B and Bealette, it was a welcome stop on the way back to rest my throbbing ankle  :smiley-laughing:

I was so impressed with the joint, I persuaded the Beals to have dinner there.

After a pleasant evening, a teary eyed Mrs B says goodbye to Bealette - this would be the last time we'd see her until her return to Oz - outside Kyoto station.

Anyway, next day was another lovely one weatherwise, which afforded a nice view of the Kyoto Tower,which has a peculiar bowl at the bottom of it, presumably to catch people who ignore the advice on the sign in post #136, and decide to take the quick way down....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031717-77235308.jpeg)

....then a quick visit to the station, to book a train to Nara, a smaller town which, according to Bealette #1 who visited the place on her honeymoon, was worth a visit.

The station fore court was bustling:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031718-772371858.jpeg)

With the train booked, and not due to leave until after lunch, it was back to see if Bealman's favourite bar was open:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031720-77239522.jpeg)

Ah well, not long to wait....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031718-77237176.jpeg)

I liked Kyoto. My kind of town:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-120519030748-773152438.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031720-772392492.jpeg)

I was just getting comfortable when it was time to catch a country train to Nara, so back to the station:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031724-772431240.jpeg)

Once again, I'll rely on railsquid to supply details of this beastie.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031721-772411057.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031721-77241827.jpeg)

Our little train was very reminiscent of the DMUs I used to ride between Darlington and Sunderland in my college days. It had come from our destination, Nara, so it was a simple matter of the driver changing ends and heading back there!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031723-772432341.jpeg)

Once on board, we sat near the front for a driver's eye view, once again, just like you could do on those old DMUs in the UK.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031713-772201617.jpeg)

....next, Nara!

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 14, 2019, 06:08:01 AM
Sounds like fun. What no vb?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 06:18:45 AM
No VB!!

However, I can say with absolute certainty that I never had one bad beer in the three weeks I was there. They make a canny drop, the Japanese.  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 14, 2019, 06:26:52 AM
The dmu'slook fascinating. Extremely impressive. . . And comfortable. Thanks for the reminders of days past in the uk george when one could peer over the driver of the line ahead
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 14, 2019, 07:08:26 AM
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031713-77220333.jpeg)

It is a Yebisu bar, which I believe is a sort of brand name type of pub similar to Weatherspoons in the UK. Anyway, with an hour or so to kill before meeting back with Mrs B and Bealette, it was a welcome stop on the way back to rest my throbbing ankle  :smiley-laughing:

"Yebisu", for obscure othographic historical reasons written with a silent "Y", is one of the "Big Four" beer companies (the others being Asahi, Kirin and Sapporo).

Never been in a Wetherspoons (I don't remember them from when I lived in the UK almost 30 years ago and I haven't beem there much in the last 15) but I imagine the "Hub" chain (like the one in Shinjuku) would be a closer equivalent.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 07:18:56 AM
Well that explains why all the glasses had "YEBISU" on them. :beers:

Yes, when I think about it, the Hub "British" chain would be a better analogy to Wetherspoons.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 14, 2019, 07:33:22 AM
I was just getting comfortable when it was time to catch a country train to Nara, so back to the station:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031724-772431240.jpeg)

Once again, I'll rely on railsquid to supply details of this beastie.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031721-772411057.jpeg)


You've got me there - off the top of my head all I can tell you is that is some sort of JR West limited express train.

The various JR regional companies have all gone their own ways as far as rolling stock goes, so while I have a reasonable idea of what was running pre-1987 (when the then JNR was "privatised" and split up into 6 regional companies),  up until when rolling stock was developed and deployed nationally (more-or-less, exceptions apply) I am not very au fait with recent developments outside the greater Tokyo area.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 07:52:47 AM
Yeah, I noticed the JR west logo on the side.... does that mean my JR rail pass would have worked?

If it did I could have jumped on, and ended up at points unknown! Now that would have been exciting!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 14, 2019, 07:58:43 AM
thanks

trains looked intertesting.bet bealette did not thank dad for photoraphing her opening wide and showing us her chopstick technique !!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 07:59:42 AM
Mind, you when I think about it, everywhere I went was points unknown :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 14, 2019, 08:08:18 AM
Yeah, I noticed the JR west logo on the side.... does that mean my JR rail pass would have worked?

Assuming you had the JR-wide one, they yes, it's valid for pretty much any train with "JR" on it, and a few other associated lines, not necessarily train ones. Not however private railway lines, municipal public transport etc.

If it did I could have jumped on, and ended up at points unknown! Now that would have been exciting!

In my younger (well less older) days when I still qualified for the JR pass, that was how I sometimes organised my travel :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on May 14, 2019, 08:08:49 AM

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031718-77237176.jpeg)

I liked Kyoto. My kind of town:

Cor blimey; it's the next James Bond!

Fascinating stuff, George.  Thank you very much.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 08:20:19 AM
Whenever we arrived at a new place, my first stop would be a 7/11,  for 4 cans: one Kirin, one Sapporo, and two Asahi.

Guess which I preferred!  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on May 14, 2019, 08:34:02 AM
Four cans, well best to 'try before you buy'.....the crate (or is it slab in OZ) :D

The 3pm - 7pm Happy Hour looked very appealing. I could see myself getting into all sorts of trouble with the missus while she was off window shopping.

Another nice set of pics. All looks fun.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on May 14, 2019, 08:41:38 AM
loving the blog @Bealman (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=255), makes me want to go back and see Japan properly. If I remember I went to the 7eleven's to use the ATM's as they were the only ones which would accept foreign debit cards.

cheers
Graham
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 08:56:41 AM
Yep, that's still the case. That's where we'd get cash.

Also sandwiches for the next day's travelling. All white bread, though. Seemed to be an adversity to brown or wholemeal.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 14, 2019, 09:08:51 AM
Glad you enjoyed the bar. Fascioating trip
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 14, 2019, 10:36:18 AM

Once again, I'll rely on railsquid to supply details of this beastie.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031721-772411057.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-100519031721-77241827.jpeg)


Good to see 'birdcage' stock still in use :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 10:56:25 AM
 :laughabovepost:

I was just pleased I got one up on Squiddy!  ;D  ;)

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 11:39:07 AM
Four cans, well best to 'try before you buy'.....the crate (or is it slab in OZ) :D

The 3pm - 7pm Happy Hour looked very appealing. I could see myself getting into all sorts of trouble with the missus while she was off window shopping.

Another nice set of pics. All looks fun.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Slabs, mate.  :beers:

Yes, it would seem Japanese clocks reckon one hour is really four!

Isn't it great?

And everything is  371 Yen!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: RailGooner on May 14, 2019, 12:13:02 PM
..
Also sandwiches for the next day's travelling. All white bread, though. Seemed to be an adversity to brown or wholemeal.

Now that's my kind of town! :foodanddrink:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 14, 2019, 12:37:26 PM
Yep, Kyoto  is a pretty cool city.   :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 14, 2019, 02:03:47 PM
..
Also sandwiches for the next day's travelling. All white bread, though. Seemed to be an adversity to brown or wholemeal.

Now that's my kind of town! :foodanddrink:

I used to think that, and then I found Multi-seed farmhouse batch loaves...

... :drool:

Still loving the travelogue!

 :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 15, 2019, 05:00:47 AM
....the train departed (right on time to the second, naturally) and we were on our way to Nara:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041338-77423346.jpeg)

At times, it was very reminiscent of my trip on the Festiniog back in 2014 (pics in Bealman's Spur-of-the-Moment UK Adventure), with the line flanked by houses and apartments on both sides:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041340-774282438.jpeg)

... and yes, like days of old, we were looking over the driver's shoulder! I thought the white gloves were a nice touch.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041340-774282013.jpeg)

The train belted along, crossing many roads:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041341-77430622.jpeg)

Before things got a little more rural and we arrived at Nara..... to be continued...
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 15, 2019, 05:29:07 AM
nothing better than route learning george !!!!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 16, 2019, 02:35:34 AM
Just before moving on, Graham's post #212 above was an interesting observation. Despite all of the technical wizardry which is obvious in Japan, the country is still very much a cash-based society. Hardly anyone pays for stuff with cards. Bealette warned us about this in advance, and told us we'd be getting our money from 7/11, which is exactly what happened. I got used to Yen quite quickly.

Anyway, we had booked ryokan accommodation in a couple of places, and Nara was one of them. I thought they'd be out of the way, but this one was close to the station and the town centre. For the uninitiated, a ryokan is a traditional Japanese guest house, with beds on the floor, tatami floor coverings, and paper blinds. There are also communal baths called onsens, which use natural warm spring water. There are separate ladies and men's onsens, and while Mrs Bealman tried it, stripping naked and jumping in a pool with a bunch of equally naked Japanese men was not Bealman's  cup of tea, so he passed on that one.

Guests must leave their shoes in the foyer, where there is a locker room to store them.

After one visit there, Bealman discovered that it smelt something bad (as one would expect), and carried his shoes to the room from then on.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041341-77430552.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041342-774311997.jpeg)

As can be seen, the rooms are somewhat basic, but at least this bed wasn't actually on the floor, but was raised slightly, thank heavens. Bealman's fascination with the toilets continued:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041343-774321647.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041344-77433946.jpeg)

The pictures do not really convey just how small these facilities really are. Anyway, Bealman's toilet fixation would be rudely shattered the next day......

After dumping our stuff, time for a wee bit of exploration. After a walk up the main street, a gate to a park could be seen in the distance:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041346-774371825.jpeg)

Inside of which was some interesting architecture:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041345-774351449.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041346-7743749.jpeg)

Nara is another one of those Japanese places where deer roam freely. Here a bride gets photographed amongst the deer droppings, and Mrs B has another wildlife encounter:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041347-774392314.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041348-774391491.jpeg)

While Nara is very nice, walking distances are quite formidable, and it was here that we did most walking. By now, my ankle was playing up again (it's a shame, because it sort of took the edge off the whole trip in a way) so in the late afternoon we headed back.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041349-774412021.jpeg)

As stated earlier, finding a bar open at this time of day in Japan is difficult, but Bealman sniffed one out, tucked away up this charming little laneway:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041349-774411339.jpeg)

.....continued.....

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 16, 2019, 05:32:56 AM
the bathroom bit small for my liking, the temple looked good, but hey thanks for that
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 16, 2019, 09:37:34 AM
Why does there appear to be a two-stroke mixing can next to the crapper?

 ???
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 16, 2019, 09:42:12 AM
Turbo flush  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 16, 2019, 09:43:13 AM
Do you pour it in and then light it?

 :o
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 16, 2019, 09:50:07 AM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Heck in that small space, no!

To be honest, I never noticed that while we were there, not even in the photo. I'm assuming it's cleaning product!

When it comes to space restraints, I'm saving the best til last!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 16, 2019, 10:07:37 AM
Still trying to figure out how you got until late afternoon without an Asahi :confused2:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 16, 2019, 10:09:49 AM
A 7/11 and a a backpack  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 16, 2019, 10:52:13 AM
:laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Heck in that small space, no!

To be honest, I never noticed that while we were there, not even in the photo. I'm assuming it's cleaning product!

The label appears to say "非常用" ("for emergency use"), though what is contained therein and what emergency it is intended to be used for is a question that may never be answered.

But if you want me to take a guess, I'd the intended emergency is a situation which leads to an interruption of on-demand H20 supplies and the can contains a supply of same for use in the neighbouring receptacle to prevent a buildup of noxious substances.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: dannyboy on May 16, 2019, 10:55:06 AM
You mean it is for manual flushing?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 16, 2019, 10:56:34 AM
That's another way of putting it, yes  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 16, 2019, 11:22:02 PM
I'll say one thing about our Squiddy - he's flush with knowledge  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 16, 2019, 11:46:08 PM
Could be worse, could be full of crap!

It is useful having an interpreter on 'staff' though.

 :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 17, 2019, 12:02:22 AM
I just hope I am not bogging down this thread with superfluous detail  :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 17, 2019, 12:08:00 AM
Nah, I think this thread will pan out okay.

 :-[
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 17, 2019, 03:20:43 AM
....It's kind of appropriate that the thread has taken this turn, as you will see shortly!!

The next day, the weather had done an about-turn, and it was wet. We'd heard from Mr & Mrs Bealette1 that somewhere around was a giant Buddha, so that was the day's objective. Heading up the street, we came across this guy yelling and waving a wand around. Whatever it was, it was pulling folk in:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041350-77443218.jpeg)

On closer inspection, inside the shop was a huge vat of GREEN dough-like material, which was been belted severely with sticks accompanied by much yelling. This stuff was then made into little packets and sold. Mrs B bought one, and here it is. The green colour doesn't really show up well in the photo, but believe me, this stuff was GREEN.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041350-774431568.jpeg)

So was Mrs Bealman's face after taking a mouthful. I won't show the picture. Anyway, being Japan, litter bins are next to non-existent, so we were stuck with this horror until we could find a drain to deposit it in. Hope it didn't morph into Godzilla or worse  :worried:

Anyway, the horror was about to become a lot worse.

Bealman was overcome with a desperate need to go to the toilet, and made a beeline for the nearest public loo. Here, his toilet fixation was abruptly terminated.

I'd heard about these, but, well, wasn't expecting to encounter one face to face.... the dreaded open, hang your butt over the hole, squatter loo!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041352-774452210.jpeg)

I will leave Bealman's dismay and contortions up to your imagination, dear reader.  >:D Moving on....

Off we went in search of this Buddha, for what seemed like miles, all uphill:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041352-77445299.jpeg)

Accompanied by what seemed like thousands of Chinese tourists.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041353-77447648.jpeg)

And of course don't forget the deer....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041353-774461827.jpeg)

.....and of course more bloody steps....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041354-774481122.jpeg)

There were literally hundreds of these stone pillars with stone boxes with paper windows on top. Railsquid to the rescue again, I hope, as I couldn't work out what they were.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041355-77449987.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041356-77451114.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041357-77453988.jpeg)

By now the crowds of Chinese tourists were getting thicker, and two impressive gates appeared, so I thought we must be close to this elusive Buddha:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041356-774511935.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041357-774531872.jpeg)

Unfortunately by now Bealman's ankle was playing up again, and so interest in the golden Buddha waned in direct proportion to the pain, so we headed off without seeing the Buddha. At least it was all downhill.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041358-774541080.jpeg)

/continued.....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 17, 2019, 04:07:36 AM
....It's kind of appropriate that the thread has taken this turn, as you will see shortly!!

The next day, the weather had done an about-turn, and it was wet. We'd heard from Mr & Mrs Bealette1 that somewhere around was a giant Buddha, so that was the day's objective. Heading up the street, we came across this guy yelling and waving a wand around. Whatever it was, it was pulling folk in:

([url]https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041350-77443218.jpeg[/url])

On closer inspection, inside the shop was a huge vat of GREEN dough-like material, which was been belted severely with sticks accompanied by much yelling. This stuff was then made into little packets and sold. Mrs B bought one, and here it is. The green colour doesn't really show up well in the photo, but believe me, this stuff was GREEN.

([url]https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041350-774431568.jpeg[/url])

So was Mrs Bealman's face after taking a mouthful. I won't show the picture. Anyway, being Japan, litter bins are next to none-existent, so we were stuck with this horror until we could find a drain to deposit it in. Hope it didn't morph into Godzilla or worse  :worried:



What you have there is mochi (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mochi), "a multicomponent food consisting of polysaccharides, lipids, protein and water". Not a big fan of it personally. Here's the shop: http://www.nakatanidou.jp/english/ (http://www.nakatanidou.jp/english/)

Anyway, the horror was about to become a lot worse.

Bealman was overcome with a desperate need to go to the toilet, and made a beeline for the nearest public loo. Here, his toilet fixation was abruptly terminated.

I'd heard about these, but, well, wasn't expecting to encounter one face to face....


Methinks that's the wrong approach...

the dreaded open, hang your butt over the hole, squatter loo!!!


Phew, it was just a turn of phrase then.

([url]https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041352-774452210.jpeg[/url])

I will leave Bealman's dismay and contortions up to you, dear reader.  >:D Moving on....


I can't recall the last time I had to use one of these, they are gradually dying out.

I wills say one of the nice things about Japan is that you have a very good chance of finding a toilet of some sort, and mostly it will be reasonably clean and also free.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: LASteve on May 17, 2019, 04:58:07 AM
....It's kind of appropriate that the thread has taken this turn, as you will see shortly!!

On closer inspection, inside the shop was a huge vat of GREEN dough-like material, which was been belted severely with sticks accompanied by much yelling. This stuff was then made into little packets and sold. Mrs B bought one, and here it is. The green colour doesn't really show up well in the photo, but believe me, this stuff was GREEN.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041350-774431568.jpeg)


Mochi! Make ice cream!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 17, 2019, 05:09:07 AM
Mochi, eh? I like the way the link says foreigners can't get enough of it.... not these two foreigners mate  :sick2:

But that's certainly the shop! Good link, Ian.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 17, 2019, 06:06:49 AM
The temple visits looked interesting. . . The fixation with toilets makes me laugh. . . Too da loo
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Malc on May 17, 2019, 02:35:45 PM
At a guess, I would think those boxy things on pillars that you saw were prayer boxes. You write your prayer on a piece of paper and post it in the box. I dare say money comes into it somewhere.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Snowwolflair on May 17, 2019, 02:45:48 PM
At a guess, I would think those boxy things on pillars that you saw were prayer boxes. You write your prayer on a piece of paper and post it in the box. I dare say money comes into it somewhere.

They are spirit houses where the spirits of their ancestors live............   Bit of a come down from a centrally heated house  :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 17, 2019, 03:17:58 PM
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-150519041354-774481122.jpeg)

There were literally hundreds of these stone pillars with stone boxes with paper windows on top. Railsquid to the rescue again, I hope, as I couldn't work out what they were.

These are an early form of beverage vending machine, in use from the middle Heian period until the late 19th century, when the first mechanical devices were imported from the Coca Cola Corporation of America.

















I jest, I jest.

Err, mind classifies these as "picturesque decorative temple-y thingies", the space available for storing Japan-related information is dominated by knowledge about early DC electric locomotives and stuff like that so you'll have to excuse my ignorance. Though I wouldn't put any money in these (any self-respecting temple or shrine will have plenty of more obvious ways of receiving "donations").
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on May 17, 2019, 03:24:33 PM
Quote
the dreaded open, hang your butt over the hole, squatter loo!!!
supposedly a more natural/healthier way to  park the breakfast than the western sitting method.For the ultimate squat bog challenge,try using one on a moving train.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Malc on May 17, 2019, 04:22:21 PM
I came across one in France where the straining handle on the back of the door had broken off. All sorts of images flashed through my mind.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 17, 2019, 09:41:40 PM
I confess when I first saw that sort of toilet in a railway station in France I said to me mate "Why would they have showers in a station?" :dunce: :-[

Presumably if you don't hear anything you have to surmise you've just filled your trousers :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 17, 2019, 11:02:30 PM
Bringing the subject back round to Japanese trains, if you'd come here a decade or so ago, you might well have encountered the separate Gentlemen's Stand Up Toilet on JNR-era express trains, which in itself is nothing out of the ordinary, but was located in a little cubicle with a door with a large glass window.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 17, 2019, 11:08:35 PM
Well at least the process was relatively transparent
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Snowwolflair on May 17, 2019, 11:10:51 PM
That's one way to spot fare dodgers.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 18, 2019, 03:51:10 AM
.....even though it was wet and my ankle was playing up, we wandered past a couple of Japanese gardens which were too hard to resist:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031115-775662451.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031117-7757128.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031117-77571249.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031118-775731260.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031118-77573502.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031120-775752175.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031120-775752458.jpeg)

A local restaurant were short of staff. Me, I wondered if the name had anything to do with it. The old Donovan song came to mind: "I'm just wild about acne, acne grows wild on me..... they call me mellow yellow...."

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031121-775771738.jpeg)

Anyway, that night we dined at the local Torikizoku chain that Bealette had introduced us to back in Osaka. Everything a standard price, ordered via tablet computer:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031122-77577749.jpeg)

.....and yes, that is an ashtray on the table. Japan seems to have a lot of smokers, and often they're not segregated. We used it to put the peapods in.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031123-77579422.jpeg)

Yummy tucker, and least you knew what it was. I had become quite comfortable with chopsticks by now, and could even pick up the tomatoes with them!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031123-77579437.jpeg)

Next morning, goodbye to the ryokan, (but we had another one booked).....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031125-775812381.jpeg)

....and back on the little branch train to the Shinkansen line. Having said previously that it's hard to find a litter bin in Japan, not so at JR stations (the teenagers in the background were obviously students of the Sailor Moon Academy):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031125-77581345.jpeg)

Then on to a Shinkansen....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-180519031114-77566821.jpeg)

....next stop, Nagoya!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 18, 2019, 08:48:00 AM
I've always loved Japanese gardens. :heart2:
 :greatpicturessign:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 18, 2019, 09:00:28 AM
More to come, Mick  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 18, 2019, 09:42:02 AM
Likewise. Thank you for lovely shots
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 19, 2019, 03:17:30 AM
.....we arrived at Nagoya late in the evening, but, like most cities of the world, bustling at night.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024518-776022274.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024518-77602581.jpeg)

I'd arranged a hotel close to the station once again (I really feel you have no choice when you're on foot with luggage, in a strange place), so walking was kept to a minimum. However, Japanese crossings are huge, wide and complex, so there is often still a lot of walking to be done.

Simply crossing the road in these places is a challenge.... the pedestrian crossing is wide, and people are lined four deep on either side, waiting for the green light. When that happens, WHAM! Both sides of the road head toward each other, like two armies going into battle. Throw a few folk on bicycles into the mix, and well.... as I say, a challenge, especially with luggage!

Central Nagoya has a lot of very new buildings, all very high rise, but tucked down a side street, not very far from our hotel was this funny little place, which I never got to see the inside of, unfortunately. The sign reads:

"Please relish original wine. I also prepare much delicious dish and am waiting for it. Please come in."

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024519-77610829.jpeg)

Next morning, the major destination of the day was the Toyota Museum. Now I'm no petrolhead, but I'd heard that it was really good, plus Mrs B has driven Toyotas all her life (we have a Corolla now). So off we went back to the station for our tourist bus passes. This is Nagoya station, only opened in 2017 after refurbishment, if I recall:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024520-776101850.jpeg)

More new architecture:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024522-77613482.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024521-77612138.jpeg)

But, just over the road from the building above, and more importantly, right on 11am, look what Bealman found.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024522-776141705.jpeg)

Once again, like Italian restaurants, this chain of bars (The Hub, mentioned earlier by railsquid), is the Japanese idea of what an English pub looks like. However, they haven't done too bad a job, and the food and drinks are reasonably priced.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024523-776141118.jpeg)

And see? We weren't the only ones in there at that time of day!

Though to be honest, I think that guy had just come to ask if he could use the toilet  :D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519024524-776162210.jpeg)

.... next up, the excellent Toyota Museum!  :beers:

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: trevis on May 19, 2019, 05:43:01 AM
Looks like a fabulous time you are having. I must say it is my favourite country in the world (not that it doesn't have many of its own problems). Doesn't hurt my other half being Yokohama born  ;)  It is such a mix of wacky, Western, traditional and respectful. And, every season is so different, not like boring one season Perth. I was hiking through Hokkaido in the snow last Feb and it was a completely different kind of magical to those brilliant autumn colours of Wakayama the year before or cherry blossoms before that.

Nowhere in the world can you rely on trains as much as this place. To the point you start to get miffed when one dares to turn up 2 minutes late. And some really pretty scenic routes, be that the countryside or coastline, shinkansen or steam.

Keep the pics coming, prompting lots of memories.

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 19, 2019, 06:06:13 AM
We look forward to hearing about toyota and japanese railways
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 19, 2019, 09:40:38 AM
Thanks, folks. Will keep em coming.

Please be aware though, that this trip was 12 months ago, and I'm relying on my withering memory cell  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: cornish yorkie on May 19, 2019, 01:07:37 PM
 :hellosign: Fascinating & really interesting George, looking forward to the next episode
   regards Derek.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 24, 2019, 01:35:48 AM
Thanks, folks. Will keep em coming.

Please be aware though, that this trip was 12 months ago, and I'm relying on my withering memory cell  :beers:

How's the memory cell holding up?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 24, 2019, 02:05:19 AM
The cell is distracted this weekend. Bealette2 wedding in North Queensland. Currently in Palm Cove surf club sucking Great Northern beer  :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 24, 2019, 02:09:41 AM
 :beers:

I'll leave you to it then!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 24, 2019, 05:27:15 AM
congratulations to Bealette2 on her wedding

bet your a proud dad and will walk her up bthe aisle
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 24, 2019, 07:07:34 AM
Dad will be sitting back on his crutches watching  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 24, 2019, 07:30:35 AM
congratulations from us all
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on May 24, 2019, 08:36:59 AM
Hi George,

You'd probably be at the right speed on crutches. My sister kindly asked me to walk her up the aisle at her Wedding as our Dad had passed a few years before.

We had an hour practice lesson with a very stern drill sergeant of an organist. 'Your going too fast!', 'stop looking at your feet!', 'you're not in sync!' etc. In the end I said (with my sister's agreement) that we can't walk like that (the one step, one step thing), it's her day and we'll just walk normally but slower.

We arrived at the alter and the organist played for at least another minute although it seemed like five. My future brother in law mouthed 'you've gone too fast'. Luckily I had to go and sit with the bridesmaids as I could see that my sister was going to get the giggles. We were terrible at that in Church as kids :).

Sorry to bore you. Anyway, congratulations to Bealette 2 and hope you all have a lovely day. Only been as far North in Queensland as Airlie Beach but I suppose in Oz terms that's just down the road.

Palm Cove sounds nice. Enjoy!

Cheers weave  :beers:

 

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 29, 2019, 04:49:52 AM
Thanks folks, only got back yesterday after a very hectic few days in the far north. Wedding very successful - short self-hijacked thread here....

Thurs 23rd here we go again....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041926-778722468.jpeg)

....and just to prove I'm still a bit indisposed..... at least I managed to fit!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041752-77854200.jpeg)

Even though I'm not really a tropical person, I must admit that Palm Cove is very nice. Wonder how it got that name?

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519043134-77873495.jpeg)

Anyway, Bealman's old college mate (a Yorkshireman) and his wife live just south of Cairns, so a meetup was arranged at the surf club on friday, and copious amounts of beer were consumed. The surf club:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041755-778661657.jpeg)

....empty glasses!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041754-77864819.jpeg)

As young people are wont to do things differently these days, the bride & groom were in colours and the guests were all in white. Here's Mrs, B, pregnant Bealette1, Japanese Bealette3 on the left, and new in-laws to the right:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041755-778662376.jpeg)

White in abundance. Sort of like the officer's mess in the Navy  ;D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041757-77869234.jpeg)

...and of course, yours truly, before painkillers......

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041756-778671580.jpeg)

....then the cocktails kicked in!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041757-778691038.jpeg)

....however, I sat the dances out, though Mrs B (in the Acoubra hat)and everyone else didn't!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041758-77871734.jpeg)

Anyway, a good time was had. A sign up on the beach always reminds you where you are though....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041753-778641267.jpeg)

That's enough hijacking..... let's get back to the Toyota museum, Nagoya!



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 29, 2019, 05:29:44 AM
thanks for sharing
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 29, 2019, 07:20:20 AM

Anyway, a good time was had. A sign up on the beach always reminds you where you are though....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-290519041753-778641267.jpeg)

Ah, if there are crocodiles this must be Switzerland (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crocodile_%28locomotive%29). Not sure what they're doing in the water though.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 29, 2019, 07:38:48 AM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

And I can't see a leash on that dog  >:(
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 29, 2019, 07:53:31 AM
Lovely to see the family enjoyment
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 29, 2019, 07:56:56 AM
Being in my current situation did have some upsides.... people made sure my glass was never empty!  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on May 29, 2019, 04:06:29 PM
Damned shame about the moonboot, George. No dad dancing strutting your stuff on the dance floor :(
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 30, 2019, 05:52:40 AM
Meanwhile, back in Japan, you might be interested to read this article: Carefully, Japan Reconsiders the Trash Can (https://www.citylab.com/life/2019/05/trash-cans-japan-garbage-bin-recycling-waste-tidying-up/589825/)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: 70000 on May 30, 2019, 06:56:50 AM
I thought the name Palm Cove sounded familiar. Just checked my photos from the 2003 Railway Touring Company trip to Australia that I went on and we stayed in a hotel there for the first couple of days.
A very nice spot, though I can't remember seeing any signs about crocodiles!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 30, 2019, 07:07:53 AM
Meanwhile, back in Japan, you might be interested to read this article: Carefully, Japan Reconsiders the Trash Can (https://www.citylab.com/life/2019/05/trash-cans-japan-garbage-bin-recycling-waste-tidying-up/589825/)

Hmm. Well that certainly explains things a bit. However, it sort of conflicts with the excessive plastic wrapping which is so prevalent!

I must admit to being one of those confused tourists!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 30, 2019, 07:11:54 AM
I thought the name Palm Cove sounded familiar. Just checked my photos from the 2003 Railway Touring Company trip to Australia that I went on and we stayed in a hotel there for the first couple of days.
A very nice spot, though I can't remember seeing any signs about crocodiles!

I assume it was the Kuranda railway you went on from Palm Cove? (After a bus ride from Palm Cove to the railway!)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: 70000 on May 30, 2019, 07:39:32 AM
I assume it was the Kuranda railway you went on from Palm Cove? (After a bus ride from Palm Cove to the railway!)

We stayed there 2 nights after arriving (fairly early in the day) into Cairns via Hong Kong. In the time we were there, the trip visited Green Island (by catamaran), Cairns-Kuranda Railway (one way, uphill ), Atherton Tablelands Railway (D17 4-6-4 haulage) and the Skyrail cable car (downhill) before departing on the Queenslander for Gympie on the third day.
A rather epic 3 week trip that eventually ended up at Hobart after visiting an awful lot of preserved rail sites and included a significant proportion of rail travel as well (including quite a chunk of the Tasrail system on charter trains, though diesel hauled due to a steam ban being in force). Certainly glad I did it, as the price of such trips has skyrocketed now!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 30, 2019, 08:21:13 AM
That's very cool!

https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=31624.0 (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=31624.0)

I live here and didn't even know the Atherton Tablelands railway existed until now!  :thumbsup:

I do however love Tasmania and go there a lot. In fact at one time in the nineties, we nearly moved there. Even had a job lined up!

Anyhow, back to Japan... still some good railway stuff coming up!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 31, 2019, 03:41:32 AM
Meanwhile, back in Japan, you might be interested to read this article: Carefully, Japan Reconsiders the Trash Can (https://www.citylab.com/life/2019/05/trash-cans-japan-garbage-bin-recycling-waste-tidying-up/589825/)

Hmm. Well that certainly explains things a bit. However, it sort of conflicts with the excessive plastic wrapping which is so prevalent!

I must admit to being one of those confused tourists!

In reference to the above, here's an example of what I mean.....

In Hiroshima, we were heading back to the hotel when Mrs B said she felt hungry and fancied an apple. Passing a supermarket - yes, a supermarket, not a 7/11, she discovered apples were hard to find, as was any of the fresh fruit such as oranges, bananas and so on that we are used to. She eventually found this:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054018-762472284.jpeg)

One individually wrapped apple!!

I was astonished. Look at the unnecessary packaging and plastic. That apple cost 184 Yen, ie, A$2.30, 1.26 British Pounds.

One aspect which didn't really impress Bealman, I'm sorry.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 31, 2019, 04:19:00 AM
Anyway, moving on, we obtained our trusty tourist bus pass, and headed off to the Toyota museum.

A new, imposing red brick building, the museum is certainly on a par with the railway museum, if not slightly better. Interestingly, when you pass through the doors, you are not greeted by a wall of cars. In fact, no cars at all!

What many people don't know is that Toyota did not begin with cars. They began making looms and spinning machinery for the textile industry. They started with water-powered spinning machines:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070628-77617861.jpeg)

....gradually becoming more industrialised....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070630-776192478.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070630-776191616.jpeg)

...most of this stuff is in working order, by the way. Leading up to more modern equipment...

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070631-77621826.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070631-77621422.jpeg)

....and the very latest computerised gear - fully operational and most impressive, spinning out cloth pictures of the museum (and Toyota vehicles, of course!)....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070633-776231326.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070633-77623902.jpeg)

The transition to the motor section occurs through a passage containg a robot band, which unfortunately was not operating at the time.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070635-776251454.jpeg)

This leads into a series of scenes showing early casting techniques and wooden contruction:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070637-77627580.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070637-776271780.jpeg)

This I presume, is the first Toyota. It's built like a tank!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070638-776291230.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070638-776292206.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070639-77631704.jpeg)

Heading out onto a balcony, Bealman was surprised to hear the sounds of a violin wafting across the vista. The robots were at it again!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070640-776311122.jpeg)

The huge space contains not only cars, but working manufacturing equipment and robot production lines:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070641-776322166.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070642-776331244.jpeg)

Lots of stuff of interest to petrolheads here.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070643-77634503.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070643-776351917.jpeg)

Yep, press a button and that wheel starts spinning at a rate of knots. Dig the groovy whitewall tyres, man!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070644-77636703.jpeg)

Then.... hushed silence.... the very first Toyota Corolla! We have a 2015 model at the moment, and the very first Toyota Celica! We had one of those too....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-190519070628-776171327.jpeg)

That Celica still looks uber cool.

Stay tuned, viewer.... more to come!

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on May 31, 2019, 05:00:30 AM
interesting historical trip. thank you for sharing


sorry i would never have paid £1.26 for an apple and all that packaging, thats too much   !!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on May 31, 2019, 08:49:15 AM
I personally think that was the best looking Celica they ever made, beautiful shape and I love that colour.

Thanks for the ongoing story.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 31, 2019, 09:29:44 AM
Thanks!  :beers:

Our Celica was a 1978 model it's a different shape altogether. The original has a little bit of a Mustang look to it, I feel.

I loved our Celica. Red lights in the doors and everything. That's what made us get it  :-[

Unfortunately the Aussie UV destroyed the upholstery. Got so bad, I had to drive it standing up  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on May 31, 2019, 04:06:50 PM
Meanwhile, back in Japan, you might be interested to read this article: Carefully, Japan Reconsiders the Trash Can (https://www.citylab.com/life/2019/05/trash-cans-japan-garbage-bin-recycling-waste-tidying-up/589825/)

Hmm. Well that certainly explains things a bit. However, it sort of conflicts with the excessive plastic wrapping which is so prevalent!

I must admit to being one of those confused tourists!

In reference to the above, here's an example of what I mean.....

In Hiroshima, we were heading back to the hotel when Mrs B said she felt hungry and fancied an apple. Passing a supermarket - yes, a supermarket, not a 7/11, she discovered apples were hard to find, as was any of the fresh fruit such as oranges, bananas and so on that we are used to. She eventually found this:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/76/255-180419054018-762472284.jpeg)

One individually wrapped apple!!

I was astonished. Look at the unnecessary packaging and plastic. That apple cost 184 Yen, ie, A$2.30, 1.26 British Pounds.

One aspect which didn't really impress Bealman, I'm sorry.

I must admit that while packaging is a bit over the top sometimes, I'm not sure where I'd go to buy an apple packaged like that. Fancy food hall in the basement of a department store? Here in suburbia we plonk the fruit directly into the shopping basket, and have to bring our own shopping bags (or pay for one) to have something to put them in.

Apples do tend to be on the expensive side though, and quite large so they're not usually eaten as individual snacks. Bananas are usually cheap.

Anyway if you ever visit the UK, do pop into Sainsburys and pick up a pack of Sainsbury's Pink Lady Apple Snack Pack 80g (https://www.sainsburys.co.uk/shop/gb/groceries/ready-to-eat-fruit/sainsburys-pink-lady-apple-snack-pack-80g).
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on May 31, 2019, 11:11:28 PM
Thinking hard about where that apple was purchased, I think the shop was located in the thoroughfare between Hiroshima JR station and the Hotel Granvia, also affiliated with JR. That may have had something to do with it.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 01, 2019, 06:00:28 AM
As you're still on fruit, I did see this....

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-radio-and-tv-17352173 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-radio-and-tv-17352173)

Might explain things.

Cheers weave  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 01, 2019, 07:06:19 AM
Certainly goes a way to explaining it! Mind you, there was nothing mind-bogglingly spectacular about our apple, though  :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 03, 2019, 06:03:26 AM
.....meanwhile, back at the Toyota museum, Bealman continued to be fascinated by the first Celica.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-020619054831-779881110.jpeg)

The cars were attended by an attractive female museum guide who spoke excellent English. She kindly opened the doors for me, although she would not let me climb into it. Notice even that model had the really cool red lights in the door, and also electric windows.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-020619054833-779971123.jpeg)

She kindly let me look inside the Corolla, too:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-020619054835-779992455.jpeg)

After spending quite a bit of time on those two, we wandered on, coming across an early Corona and Camry:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-020619054835-779991784.jpeg)

....and various other Toyota products...

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054836-78000702.jpeg)

To me, the really cool parts of the museum were the robot production line exhibits, which were fully operational. I took videos of them, but have not uploaded them to You Tube, so they will have to wait for another day. There was a vehicle at speed on a rolling road:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-020619054833-77997284.jpeg)

The robot violin player was apparently a product of a partnership of Toyota and some other company:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054836-780011431.jpeg)

To be honest, I found it a bit spooky!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054837-780031592.jpeg)

When we left the museum, we still had a bit of time, so we decided to take a look at Nagoya castle. This was an error of judgement.... the day had become very hot, and there was a fair bit of walking involved. Plus, there was a lot of renovation work going on:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054837-780032216.jpeg)

....and the castle itself looked like a carbon copy of the Osaka castle (well to my eyes, anyway):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054838-78005905.jpeg)

At this point I made an even bigger mistake. The tourist bus that would take us back to the hotel was about a twenty minute wait. When one came around the corner, I thought, "ok... let's get that one"

Well the bloody thing took us to our hotel alright - the long way round. Two hour trip! At least we saw quite a bit of Nagoya, I guess.

Our hotel was what I'd call mid-range and came with buffet breakfast included in the price, but the rooms were still very small:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054839-78005753.jpeg)

That night we ate at Torikizoku again. By now we knew what we were going to order and knew we'd enjoy it! Not sure about this stuff, though, although the bottom middle one seems obvious enough, though the animal it was from less so.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054840-780071913.jpeg)

We had the usual!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/77/255-020619054831-77988149.jpeg)

Nagoya also has an excellent science centre. Stay tuned!



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 03, 2019, 10:04:58 AM

The robot violin player was apparently a product of a partnership of Toyota and some other company:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054836-780011431.jpeg)

To be honest, I found it a bit spooky!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054837-780031592.jpeg)


I always wondered what happened to Nigel Kennedy :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 03, 2019, 10:13:11 AM
Probably inside the suit  ;D

Who's Nigel Kennedy?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 03, 2019, 10:23:10 AM
An old punk fiddle player.......

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 03, 2019, 10:37:00 AM
They need to stick a beard on the robot, then.

I preferred the blonde violinist at the end, but I guess that was probably his missus  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: CarriageShed on June 03, 2019, 01:03:28 PM
(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-020619054836-780011431.jpeg)

To be honest, I found it a bit spooky!

That's due to the lack of body language in a human-shaped figure. Your brain is expecting it but isn't receiving it. That's why robophobia is a very real condition. Some people really get freaked out by the lack of humanness.

Of course, when they rise up and exterminate us all, we won't much care about their body language...
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 03, 2019, 03:30:46 PM
Some people really get freaked out by the lack of humanness.


Going by some of the sights I've seen at various model railway shows, robots would hold no worries for me :no:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 03, 2019, 04:20:07 PM
They used to place one of those robots at the site of any major accident involving a Toyota vehicle.

True fact: railsquid's brother (long resident in kangaroo-infested parts) used to work for Toyota, and they sent him to Nagoya (or some deity-forsaken suburb next to Nagoya) for almost a year to learn the Toyota Way, as a result of which he and most of the other Kangarooinfestedland engineers sent there no longer work for Toyota.

I did learn that Toyota adjust their vehicle engineering for the target market, e.g. anything designed for North America has to have suspension as soft as a mattress slept on for 20 years by an elephant and about 2 gazillion 200oz cupholders (my memory is fuzzy on the precise details but you get the idea). I can't remember if there was anything specific for Australia, maybe extra-strong roofs because of the drop bears?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 03, 2019, 11:30:54 PM
That year in Nagoya worked well then  ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 04, 2019, 03:22:56 AM
.....next day, after a buffet breakfast (yes, western style, with bacon & scrambled eggs), off in search of the science centre. It was quite a long way, involving a subway ride and a considerable walk, but rounding a corner into a park, we came across this.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063743-780371113.jpeg)

.....no, not a giant golf ball, but the science centre! I guessed it had to be, because parked outside was this big sucker of a Japanese launch vehicle:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063744-7805419.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063744-78054918.jpeg)

Inside was very impressive, with multiple levels covering just about every scientific discipline. Remember Pythagoras? Push the button, and this display demonstrated the theorem in a novel way I had not seen before. Bealman was impressed!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063745-780561662.jpeg)

Me being a lifetime spacehead, I was very interested in the universe section. It was good to see a "Powers of 10" display running, and was one I used in my science teaching days to get across the concept of vastness and also microness.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063745-780561462.jpeg)

Interested forum members may be interested in checking out this cool link:

http://htwins.net/scale2/ (http://htwins.net/scale2/)

I got many a useful lesson out of using this.

Back at the museum, they had a model of the venerable Saturn V moon rocket (50 years ago this July, by the way):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063747-780582204.jpeg)

Generally a very impressive facility.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063747-78058844.jpeg)

There was a special exhibit on at the time that our passes allowed access to. Like Bealman, the Japanese are huge Marvel fanatics (Avengers Infinity War was on over there at the time), and of course he had to check it out:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063749-780602276.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063749-78060771.jpeg)

A very enjoyable afternoon. On the way home, we stopped by at one of those Hub British pubs, which was advertising the up-coming game between Japan and Ghana:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063751-78062920.jpeg)

Also walked past that intriguing little place which I really wished I'd stuck me head into:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063752-780621425.jpeg)

Although our hotel was reasonably modern:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063754-780661593.jpeg)

The room had the most seriously small fridge I have ever encountered in my life. Unfortunately this photo does not really show the smallness of it. It had room for one can of beer. Should have been included in the Scale of the Universe software!!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063753-78064545.jpeg)

Anyway, by now we were on our way back to Tokyo, but with one more stop to make. We really wanted to see a bit of countryside, preferably near Mount Fuji. So, after a quick heart starter in another Yebisu Bar,

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063755-78067507.jpeg)

...it was back to the station to board another Shinkansen....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063754-7806696.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063753-78064380.jpeg)

What you can't see in the above photos is the vast, teeming underground shopping centres and malls that most of these cities have. I sometimes think that the Japanese are a subterrainean race!

The speed of these Shinkansens when passing through non-stop is truly frightening. Hopefully I will be able to post a video. Blink and you'll miss it!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063756-780692178.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063756-7806964.jpeg)

Spotted this - railsquid indentification?

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063742-78037601.jpeg)

Next up... a little peace and quiet before Tokyo....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 04, 2019, 05:31:39 AM
thanks certainly been all over the place bealman !!!


Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on June 04, 2019, 07:20:36 AM
really enjoying the tour of Japan George,

cheers
Graham
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 04, 2019, 07:52:18 AM
Spotted this - railsquid indentification?

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-030619063742-78037601.jpeg)

Aha, now we're back in familiar territory - this is an Odakyu VSE 50000 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odakyu_50000_series_VSE)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 04, 2019, 07:57:57 AM
Thanks, Graham!

Thanks, Ian!

 :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 04, 2019, 08:28:48 AM
Just looked at the link. That's a nice looking unit. Very smart.

You got the model version?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 04, 2019, 09:00:07 AM
Just looked at the link. That's a nice looking unit. Very smart.

You got the model version?

Nope, much as I'd like to there is a stupendous amount of nice models at reasonable prices out there, and I have to set my focus somewhere otherwise I'd run out of money and storage space...
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 04, 2019, 09:19:50 AM
Ok.... but that one to me is a great looking set!

You can probably hide it somewhere.....

Or is it a wee bit expensive? Who makes it?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 06, 2019, 04:39:44 AM
.....by now, we were on our way back to Tokyo, but we wanted to stop somewhere not quite as urbanised. Ideally, we wanted to stay a couple of nights right next to Mount Fuji, and while possible, getting there seemed awkward, trainwise. Looking at a map, we plonked for Hakone. This basically involved getting off the Tokyo-bound Shinkansen at a place called Odowara, and boarding a local train to Hakone.

The line wandered up a steep, heavily wooded ravine, following the course of a river. This eventually terminated at a nice two-platform terminus station. Here is our train:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053434-78145746.jpeg)

Just as we arrived, a rather nice looking unit was pulling away from the other platform:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053432-781431015.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053433-78143527.jpeg)

Squiddy might have some idea what it was! As can be seen, the station nestles right up against the side of the valley.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053435-781461994.jpeg)

It's quite an attractive arched structure:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053435-781451397.jpeg)

Anyway, we crossed the street and waited with a number of other people for the shuttle bus to take us to our hotel. Turns out we needn't have bothered, as the place was quite easy walking distance, but we didn't know that at the time.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053436-781472055.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053437-78148291.jpeg)

By now the heat was beginning to build in this little valley, and the bus was a while away, so Bealman went for a walk around the corner to be greeted by this:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053438-78149511.jpeg)

I like this place, I thought!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053438-78150773.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053439-781511053.jpeg)

Shortly, the shuttle came and deposited us at our hotel, another ryokan, so it was shoes off on the tatami floors. Notice the floor level chairs!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053440-7815246.jpeg)

The views from the window were quite splendid:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053440-78153540.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053431-781392083.jpeg)

But there was a problem (as far as Bealman was concerned, anyway)....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053442-781561889.jpeg)

This was a real ryokan....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053442-781551885.jpeg)

.....which of course meant.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053441-781541426.jpeg)

.....SLEEPING ON THE FLOOR!!! This was going to be a rough night!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 06, 2019, 05:08:27 AM
Ok.... but that one to me is a great looking set!

You can probably hide it somewhere.....

Yeah, but like I kind of said, I have a backlog of stuff which needs hiding somewhere... This isn't even on my Rule 1 Impulse Buy If Cheap list (though that list does contain the forefather of these, the 3000 series SE (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odakyu_3000_series_SE)).

Or is it a wee bit expensive? Who makes it?

Tomix: https://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/92754.html (https://www.tomytec.co.jp/tomix/products/n/92754.html)

Price is in the normal range, i.e. shop around and the whole set can probably found for less than the price of a new British loco (though with the way the pound is falling against the yen, I'll probably be afford to use British stock for juggling practice soon).
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 06, 2019, 05:13:16 AM

Just as we arrived, a rather nice looking unit was pulling away from the other platform:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053432-781431015.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-050619053433-78143527.jpeg)

Squiddy might have some idea what it was!

This is a 7000 series LSE (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odakyu_7000_series_LSE), you were lucky to have seen it as they were withdrawn a few months later.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 06, 2019, 05:36:15 AM
thanks for sharing

how did you manage to get up / down off the floor ?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 06, 2019, 06:17:47 AM
With great difficulty!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 06, 2019, 06:28:22 AM
Guess it was an experience trying a traditional japanese bed and the view must have been interesting. What . . . With a dodgy ankle it looked low. The trains were interesting too
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 06, 2019, 10:35:06 AM
I don't really want to talk about the view from down there  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 06, 2019, 10:41:51 AM
I meant out of the window not the floor
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: DarrwestLU6 on June 06, 2019, 11:51:52 PM
Enjoying the pictures Bealman! Very nostalgic for me too. I've not been to Nagoya but I am recognising Odawara - did you go to Hakone next?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 07, 2019, 01:04:30 AM
Thanks! Yes, that's Hakone in the pictures.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 07, 2019, 02:43:41 AM
Did you make it further up into the mountains?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 07, 2019, 03:06:24 AM
Unfortunately no, Ian, though we did have a bus trip through some pretty rugged country to Hakonemachi-ko (?) for a cruise on Lake Ashi - coming up in a future installment!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 07, 2019, 05:01:32 AM
.....that evening we went for a wander to find something to eat....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042658-78203737.jpeg)

....and while being a very picturesque place.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042658-78203538.jpeg)

.....finding a bar or eatery was almost impossible! In fact I don't remember eating anything that night, or if I did, it was probably stuff from the 7/11, which thankfully the town did have in it's main street. So we wandered on....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042659-78205980.jpeg)

....mostly along back streets, eventually ending up back at the station.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042700-782052454.jpeg)

There was a train sitting there....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042700-78206681.jpeg)

I'll leave it to railsquid to identify it, but it seemed like a pullman type train with all the luxury bells and whistles. I have a theory about this town. I think it seems to be a weekend train destination for well-off Tokyoites who come on the complete package - posh train, meals on board, weekend in a nice place, etc. I may be wrong, but that's the feeling I got.

I know that the place we stayed at wasn't cheap - and you got to sleep on the bloody floor! It had it's own extensive gardens for the use of hotel guests, and they were gorgeous. I'll post some pics especially for NewportNobby in a future episode.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042702-782091592.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042657-782011719.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042655-781991068.jpeg)

....they're keen on big goldfish in this country!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042657-78201725.jpeg)

Just walking the corridors to your room was a pleasure with views like this:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042654-781942219.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042655-781992211.jpeg)

Anyway, after what was probably the most uncomfortable night's sleep Bealman had ever had in his life (perhaps not.... a night in the back of a mini van in his college days probably holds number one position), morning dawned, and we had a cruise lined up....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042701-782071219.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042702-782092135.jpeg)

So bad backs and all, we headed off from our hotel.... cruise time!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042703-78211147.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042654-781942387.jpeg)

...continued

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 07, 2019, 05:30:38 AM
thanks for sharing
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 07, 2019, 05:34:11 AM

.....finding a bar or eatery was almost impossible! In fact I don't remember eating anything that night, or if I did, it was probably stuff from the 7/11, which thankfully the town did have in it's main street. So we wandered on....

With these kinds of hotels, meals are usually part of the package (and part of the attraction for many people). Though it will be very Japanese-style food. I'm half-wondering if the hotel was left puzzled by the foreigners who never came to eat it...


(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042659-78205980.jpeg)

....mostly along back streets, eventually ending up back at the station.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042700-782052454.jpeg)

There was a train sitting there....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-070619042700-78206681.jpeg)

I'll leave it to railsquid to identify it, but it seemed like a pullman type train with all the luxury bells and whistles.

It's another one of Odakyu's "Romance Car" trains, this time a 30000 series EXE (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odakyu_30000_series_EXE), which is widely regarded as the dullest, boringest train Odakyu have produced to date. Just a bog standard limited express really. It is of course what came along the only time I ever took a ride down to Hakone...

I have a theory about this town. I think it seems to be a weekend train destination for well-off Tokyoites who come on the complete package - posh train, meals on board, weekend in a nice place, etc. I may be wrong, but that's the feeling I got.

Your feeling is generally correct. Where you were was "Hakone-Yumoto", which is the gateway to the whole resort area, though it is accessible for we normal folks too.

Historical note: in the post-war area, access to this area was the focus of heated battles between a couple of different railway companies, and if you travel about there you start to notice many of the "attractions" (hotels, cable cars, parks, tour buses) etc. are still divided into almost "opposing factions", if you will.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 07, 2019, 06:59:12 AM
Interesting! We actually ended up eating in the hotel on our second night, but paid for it.

Wouldn't like to think we were ripped off!!

Bit late to worry about it now like.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: DarrwestLU6 on June 07, 2019, 08:39:37 AM
Beautiful garden photos! Looking forward to more instalments...
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 07, 2019, 08:43:43 AM
Thanks! The garden in the ryokan was very impressive. A pleasure to walk around in it.  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 07, 2019, 10:08:30 AM
Thanks for the pics, George, and I too look forward to seeing more.

I'm half-wondering if the hotel was left puzzled by the foreigners who never came to eat it...


They cater for unfortunate folks who suffer from Pica??
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 07, 2019, 10:21:40 AM
Having been treated to a beautiful banquet by Bealette's lovely student, I'm pretty OK with most Japanese stuff, but chewing on the soil was hard work.

The ice cubes as well, actually  :D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: cornish yorkie on June 07, 2019, 08:39:46 PM
 :hellosign: Thanks for posting George, looking forward to more
      regards Derek.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 08, 2019, 05:41:49 AM
....after a winding bus trip through some nice scenery, we were deposited at a small settlement on the edge of Lake Ashi.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034800-782401526.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034446-782361199.jpeg)

Here we bought tickets for a return trip up the lake and back. Bealman hoped that these weren't the boats!!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034802-78242144.jpeg)

The cruise company operates three galleon-like boats:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034444-782231126.jpeg)

Ours turned out to be a Japanese version of Nelson's flagship, the Victory!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034802-78242642.jpeg)

I've actually been on the real one in Portsmouth. There's a brass plaque on the deck that says "Nelson fell here". I'm not surprised.... I tripped over the bloody thing myself!  ;D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034803-782442474.jpeg)

Once again, we opted for first class - it's more than worth the extra few dollars.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034803-782442314.jpeg)

You even get your own section of deck, fenced off from the masses!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034448-782381181.jpeg)

If the brochure is to be believed, on a clear day, you get fine views of Mount Fuji from the boat, but of course, this particular day was very overcast:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034444-78223892.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034447-78238769.jpeg)

We did get to see plenty of those gate thingies though, which were along the shoreline:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034805-782462041.jpeg)

We called in at another place around the bay, Motohakone-ko, where more passengers embarked:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034446-78236987.jpeg)

From there, it was a leisurely cruise to the far end of the lake at a place called Tongendai-ko.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034808-782501055.jpeg)

Here, our Victory berthed up alongside a green sister ship, presumably the Lion, going by the figurehead on the bow....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034805-782461953.jpeg)

Here are the two boats:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034806-78248579.jpeg)

From here a cable railway apparently takes you close to Mount Fuji, but of course it wasn't working this day....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034806-782481009.jpeg)

....so a bit of exploring on foot was in order, helped by a map with some interesting places marked on it:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034808-782501563.jpeg)

Not sure what this is about.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034809-782521293.jpeg)

....and definitely haven't a clue about this one!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034809-782522309.jpeg)

Mrs Bealman went off looking for them.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034811-782541503.jpeg)

But Bealman, citing his dodgy ankle, stayed and admired the view. Really a shame it was overcast.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034810-782531216.jpeg)

When we returned to the dock, we found that the green ship had turned red!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034812-782562132.jpeg)

No idea what this one was called. It had some Trojan dude on the front of it....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034811-78255893.jpeg)

Anyway, a couple of fine beers were enjoyed on the return trip....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034813-78258926.jpeg)

....before arriving back after a very pleasant day out.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034800-782402168.jpeg)

..../continued
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 08, 2019, 05:56:41 AM
Sounds lhke this was fun. Bit like a japanese cruise round the lake district.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 08, 2019, 08:32:24 AM

From there, it was a leisurely cruise to the far end of the lake at a place called Tongendai-ko.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034808-782501055.jpeg)

Mrs. Railsquid and I dined once at the restaurant in the above building. The view was better than the food.


Ours turned out to be a Japanese version of Nelson's flagship, the Victory!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-080619034802-78242642.jpeg)

I've actually been on the real one in Plymouth. There's a brass plaque on the deck that says "Nelson fell here". I'm not surprised.... I tripped over the bloody thing myself!  ;D


My inner pedant begs leave to inform that it wasn't Plymouth where you tripped over that.

Talking of famous flagships, not too far away from there down on the coast at Yokosuka (the Japanese Portsmouth) you can visit the Battleship Mikasa, flagship at the Battle of Tsushima in the Russian-Japanese war of 1906-ish, which markets itself as the Japanese version of HMS Victory. And when you board you can see the maker's plate which tells you where it was built (Barrow-in-Furness).
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 08, 2019, 09:04:21 AM
I knew that  :P

I couldn't be bothered to go back and change it  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 08, 2019, 01:11:34 PM
Lots of Canons on view there, George. ;)
I hope you got treble stamps on the 4 galleons :-X
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Invicta Alec on June 08, 2019, 03:48:57 PM
Overcast or not, looks like a great day out to me!

Alec.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 08, 2019, 04:01:28 PM
This is actually part of a very popular circular tourist route around the mountains, doable as a day trip from Tokyo.

The station mentioned above (Hakone Yumoto) is also the terminus of the Hakone Tozan railway, which is a picturesque little line which climbs further into the mountains via many switchbacks. At the terminus, Gora, there's a funicular which leads to a cable car which takes you over the volcanically active "Owakudani" (literally "Great Boiling Valley"), which smells of rotten eggs, at the top of which you change to another cable car which takes you down to the lake with the galleons, at the other end of which buses will take you back to Hakone Yumoto, or all the way to Odawara.

However, as the whole area is basically the caldera of a dormant volcano, it is prone to closure every now and then due to things bubbling up from below (magma, poisonous gases etc.). This mainly affects the cable car section.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 08, 2019, 11:19:12 PM
Cool! If I'd known that, I'd have investigated the full round trip, although the stuff might have been bubbling that day as the cablecar wasn't going.

The smell wouldn't have bothered me. One of my favourite places in New Zealand, Rotorua, smells like that most of the time.

As it was, it was still a good day out.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 09, 2019, 04:49:49 AM
....the following episode is especially for NewportNobby and all the gardeners out there (that doesn't include me - my surname might be Green, but green-fingered I most definitely ain't)....

Our ryokan hotel backed out onto it's own private garden, for the pleasure of it's guests. A path leads away from the door.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041928-78291305.jpeg)

....and off to mysterious places.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041931-78305199.jpeg)

....and off to mysterious places..... anyone who ever played the hit computer game of the nineties, Myst and it's sequels could identify with this. No maps, just exploring this quiet surreal landscape with only the sound of waterfalls - very much like the games.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041932-783071620.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041933-78307395.jpeg)

Very peaceful. we spent a good hour here.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041934-783091626.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041934-783092481.jpeg)

....they certainly like their fish big!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041936-783111819.jpeg)

Even Mrs B was inspired to take pictures....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041936-783112467.jpeg)

....I was inspired to sit down with me sore ankle  :D

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041937-783131789.jpeg)

For those of you who followed along with my morbid obsession about the state of my local bus stop a while back, it was good to find a bus stop.... mind you, I think you'd be waiting a while for a bus here!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041938-783138.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041939-78315748.jpeg)

On through the landscape....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041939-783151843.jpeg)

...every turn bringing something new:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041941-78317230.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041941-783172432.jpeg)

...until a bridge leads back to the hotel.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-090619041943-78319224.jpeg)

.../continued



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on June 09, 2019, 05:39:54 AM
love the gardens George, I wish I was greenfingered some times then I retire to the garage and play trains, when I finish I have forgotten about the gardening.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 09, 2019, 05:49:52 AM
looks well kept and maintained
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 09, 2019, 06:11:35 AM
They most definitely are, but the prices charged by the hotel will more than cover the cost!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 09, 2019, 10:26:06 AM
Wonderful garden, George, although I prefer the more minimalist ones with fewer trees, more stones and raked sand. That sort of thing.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 09, 2019, 10:37:32 AM
Wonderful garden, George, although I prefer the more minimalist ones with fewer trees, more stones and raked sand. That sort of thing.

So do cats ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 09, 2019, 10:48:35 AM
Wonderful garden, George, although I prefer the more minimalist ones with fewer trees, more stones and raked sand. That sort of thing.

So do cats ;)

 :laughabovepost:
I can just imagine my cat, Hookey, doing snow angels in the sand ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 09, 2019, 10:49:40 AM
Sorta like western English beaches and their hinterland  :P
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: DarrwestLU6 on June 10, 2019, 10:16:16 PM
Great Photos Bealman san! I am wondering where off to next? Magnificent Kyoto? Via very high speed bullet train?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 11, 2019, 12:42:51 AM
Great Photos Bealman san! I am wondering where off to next? Magnificent Kyoto? Via very high speed bullet train?

Kyoto is a few pages back.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: grumbeast on June 11, 2019, 05:05:46 AM
Lovely pictures!  I could spend days just sitting in a garden like that... well maybe sitting and reading (railroad books of course!)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: DarrwestLU6 on June 11, 2019, 11:27:25 AM
Ah I've just caught up with the earlier sections of the thread and the great pictures of the Kyoto Railway museum, very good, very good, definitely want to go now!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 16, 2019, 03:50:53 AM
....upon getting back to Hakone after the boat trip, we went for one last wander through the town (once again, looking in vain for a decent eatery and bar - we ended up eating at the hotel). While there is not a lot to do here, we liked Hakone. It was a nice change from the hustle and bustle of the major cities, and we were heading back to Tokyo, after all.

Nice narrow streets....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030355-785381881.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030358-785672048.jpeg)

The place sits nicely in a steep heavily wooded valley, which railsquid has so effectively captured on his layout:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030359-785692077.jpeg)

The place does have it's 7/11 - the bank as well as the edible supply store - notice the prominent ATM sign:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030358-785672116.jpeg)

Anyway, after a very nice but expensive in-house restaurant meal (I hope Squiddy isn't correct when he suggests it may have been included in the price), we retired to our ryokan for one last night on the floor. The hotel kindly provided Japanese style robes, and here Mrs B throws on her best Japanese pose (judging by the look on her face, she was looking forward to sleeping on the floor as much as I was):

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030359-78569168.jpeg)

Next morning back at an almost deserted Odawara station on the JR line, destination the big smoke....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030400-785711461.jpeg)

We arrived at Shinjuku station, with hopefully only a short walk to the hotel....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030401-78571687.jpeg)

...as usual, WRONG! Actually, it wasn't that far, but it seemed like it with the luggage. Plus, this was TOKYO, not Hakone! Sorta like, people central. Now, a month or so prior to the trip, railsquid had gently suggested that Shinjuku was, well, Shinjuku, and maybe we'd like to stay elsewhere.

Basically, it is a red light district, but that sort of went over me head when I was comparing hotel prices, and Shinjuku is where we ended up. In hindsight, I'm glad. The place certainly has a vibe to it!!!

After walking past Godzilla....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030403-78574969.jpeg)

....we arrived at our destination, the 21st floor of the APA hotel:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030355-7853830.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030402-785721201.jpeg)

While this is a big hotel, with what must be hundreds and hundreds of rooms, they're once again darned small. It's hard to make out in this pic, but the bed is right up against the window - so the only way to get up is to climb over the person on the other side! Now this might be fine if you are into playing the Japanese version of Twister, but when you're desperate for a pee in the night.... well you go figure

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030408-78578763.jpeg)

You have of course, the vantage of being high up, which really drives home just how densely packed a place you are in....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030406-785761408.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030406-78576968.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030403-78574720.jpeg)

A little bit of greenery down there, though - a building covered in it!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619030408-785781416.jpeg)

....continued/



Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 16, 2019, 05:18:09 AM
Claustrophobic
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 16, 2019, 07:35:01 AM
Hi George,

More nice pics of a proper tourist insight to a country.

I like the the pics of your neighbour's swimming pool at the end. It probably doesn't have one but I envisage a swim up bar to the left although I wouldn't be allowed to leave by my wife if the only exit was the outside steps to the right. I don't have vertigo but they look like they'd be a bit scary after a few sherbets  :).

Great stuff.

Cheers weave  :beers:





Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 16, 2019, 08:04:17 AM
That whole building complex with the pool is actually a hospital  :hmmm:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 16, 2019, 08:08:02 AM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Good one, Ian! That's shot weave's bar down in flames, then....  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 16, 2019, 08:20:41 AM
If you're going to drunkenly fall down steps no better place.

Bit off topic, sort of, but had to go to Madrid Hospital in 1988 and they had a huge bar, like a massive Weatherspoons, full of doctors all drinking, smoking and eating tapas - amazing.

Don't think they had a pool though.

Cheers weave  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 16, 2019, 08:23:57 AM
Actually digging about a bit, because I remember there being a small shopping complex in the basement of that building, the pool appears to be associated with some sort of health/sports facility.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on June 16, 2019, 08:55:39 AM
loving the pics George, although it sounds as if you are coming to the end of the trip. Where are we going next on your travels?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 16, 2019, 09:17:14 AM
Thanks, Graham. It was going to be TINGS, but I've reluctantly had to accept that it's not going to happen this year.

Unless a miracle happens.... but let's not enter the arena of Australian politics.....  ;)

Sorry, only Aussies will understand that comment  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on June 16, 2019, 10:43:23 AM
yes the interest rates are affecting all of us who now live on our super. I was hoping for TINGS next year but looks like it may be 2021 before I can make it again.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 16, 2019, 05:12:54 PM
One thing about sleeping on the floor, George, it doesn't hurt so much when you fall out of bed :no:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 16, 2019, 11:10:35 PM
Any such benefits are totally nullified when you have to struggle to get up to take a leak, unfortunately  :worried:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 17, 2019, 03:11:19 AM
Shinjuku!

One thing that these pictures do not convey is the sound! The whole place is filled with music and voices from all of the video hoardings, and at night is even more so. As the Irish band U2 said on their first visit, it's like a scene from the movie Blade Runner.

Off exploring.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051341-785801547.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051342-785822063.jpeg)

There was an advantage to the hotel.... there was a reasonably priced bar just around the corner (the black railings in the photo below). A good venue to enjoy a drink and watch the people go by!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051342-78581332.jpeg)

As railsquid predicted, quite a few strip joints in the area....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051343-78583753.jpeg)

However, we generally felt quite safe and found the vibe exciting. Here, Mrs B ponders which way to go....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051344-785851330.jpeg)

I didn't fancy crab, but there was English, Sottish and Welsh food available if the signage on the left is to be believed...

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051344-785851377.jpeg)

Then, heading up this street.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051345-78586682.jpeg)

...we came to a busy street intersection. Now I had tried in vain to walk to Shibuya crossing on the first day in Tokyo. For those unfamiliar, Shibuya crossing is the largest, busiest pedestrian crossing in the world. This was not Shibuya, but it was good enough for Bealman!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051345-785871702.jpeg)

See what I mean about the huge signs? The whole street was filled with sound from them as well!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051347-785892250.jpeg)

Ok... the crowd gathers... fleeing Godzilla as he appears at the top of the building in the background....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051347-78589471.jpeg)

...the light turns green, and they're off! Except some of them seem to be heading towards Godzilla.....  :worried:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051348-785911794.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051348-78591739.jpeg)

....a few stragglers.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051350-78593280.jpeg)

Being of musical persuasion, Mrs Bealman located a shop selling stringed instruments. The cello in the middle, at 489,500 Yen, works out at A$6549.20, or 3578.41 Pounds Sterling. We did not take one home with us.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051350-785931004.jpeg)

As darkness fell, I located one of those HUB British pubs, which we arranged to meet railsquid at the following evening.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051351-785951974.jpeg)

The guy in the picture here looks quite menacing, but I believe these guys are paid to advertise nearby eateries. We never felt threatened here.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051352-785961810.jpeg)

As darkness sets further in, the place lights up. Hate to think of the electricity bills

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051352-78596451.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051340-78580943.jpeg)

....coming up..... a meeting with railsquid!!!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 17, 2019, 04:15:59 AM

....a few stragglers.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051350-78593280.jpeg)

To add some railway-related context, the tall thin brown building on the left is above the terminus of my local (private) line, and just about visible (if you know what you're looking for) is the bridge carrying the JR tracks (4 pairs of running lines, all grade-separated) north of Shinjuku station, which means I pass through this area, and over that crossing, quite regularly.

The guy in the picture here looks quite menacing, but I believe these guys are paid to advertise nearby eateries. We never felt threatened here.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-160619051352-785961810.jpeg)

Yup, the streets around there are full of touts for restaurants, karaoke etc.

If you walk around by yourself after dark, it's quite likely one or more gentlemen from west Africa will try to be your best friend (they work a lot with the "proffered handshake" trick) and tempt you with promises of, ahem, "company", into a bar they happen to know, where (according to reports by people who were stupid/drunk enough to follow the invitation) you will wake up some hours later dazed and with a severely battered credit card.

But in general, unless you actively seek out trouble, it will leave you well alone.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 17, 2019, 06:19:11 AM
Thanks for sharing
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 17, 2019, 07:24:52 AM
I assume that's where we said farewell, then, Ian.

He said, pre-empting a future episode  ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Michael Shillabeer on June 17, 2019, 09:26:13 AM
Coincidentally, three weeks ago we stayed in the same Shinjuku hotel! Chosen by price too without researching what the area was famous for...! booking.com didn't mention the red light district!

Our room was compact too with a view of various railway lines :-)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/1883-170619091843-7861013.jpeg)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 17, 2019, 10:11:52 AM
Strewth, George!
In your 7th photo there's a guy from the Coldstream Guards complete with bearskin at the right hand side :goggleeyes:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 17, 2019, 10:36:32 AM
Thanks, Michael! Our room looked out on the hospital side, unfortunately!

Could have been worse.... Godzilla on the other!  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: DarrwestLU6 on June 20, 2019, 01:00:55 AM
Looking forward to hearing about your meeting with Railsquid...
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: themadhippy on June 20, 2019, 11:10:35 AM
Quote
but the bed is right up against the window - so the only way to get up is to climb over the person on the other side! Now this might be fine if you are into playing the Japanese version of Twister, but when you're desperate for a pee in the night
open the window,problem solved
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 20, 2019, 11:16:15 AM
Quote
but the bed is right up against the window - so the only way to get up is to climb over the person on the other side! Now this might be fine if you are into playing the Japanese version of Twister, but when you're desperate for a pee in the night
open the window,problem solved

The windows in those kinds of hotels tend not to open more than a fraction, probably to prevent accidental defenstration events.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 22, 2019, 08:00:16 AM
....our penultimate day in Japan turned out wet. We stopped by at the bar around the corner and watched rather bemusedly while a bunch of blokes removed stuff from a container.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619072022.jpeg)

The little guy in the mac did a lot of shouting and pointing, but no lifting, so Bealman assumed he was the supervisor:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071415-787181651.jpeg)

We found something called "Robot Restaurant" on a map, and thought that would be worth a look. However, on arrival it would seem that the Robot Restaurant is some sort of sex show, so we never went in....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071417-787271638.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071417-78727415.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071419-78729258.jpeg)

Mrs B spotted a handbag shop, so buying her a souvenir of Tokyo was an easy if rather expensive exercise:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619074218.jpeg)

We had arranged to meet railsquid at the HUB British pub, which earlier in the day was pretty much empty. Of course, the Japan vs Ghana soccer match I had seen advertised in Kyoto was on that night, so the place was packed! However, Ian showed up on time, and a great night was had, and much beer consumed.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071419-7872933.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071420-7873141.jpeg)

It's always great meeting up with other forum members, especially living in a relatively remote place such as Australia. It is always a highlight of my overseas trips. Don't ask me what we discussed that night, though - it's a wee bit hazy  :beers:

We walked to the railway station and said our goodbyes, but not before Ian had given me instructions on where to find model railway stuff nearby!

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071420-78731276.jpeg)

On the way back to the hotel we decided to stop by at the Torikizoku place, the signage of which I seen earlier. However finding it was difficult! Not an inch of space is wasted in Tokyo, and the multiple floors above the shop fronts at street level are jam-packed with multiple businesses! Torikizoku was on the third floor, accessed by a tiny little lift.

From there, we headed back to the hotel in the rain, after a great night. Fantastic meeting you, Squiddy! :thumbsup:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071421-78733633.jpeg)

...to be concluded.....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 22, 2019, 08:08:43 AM
We found something called "Robot Restaurant" on a map, and thought that would be worth a look. However, on arrival it would seem that the Robot Restaurant is some sort of sex show, so we never went in....

([url]https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071417-787271638.jpeg[/url])

([url]https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071417-78727415.jpeg[/url])

([url]https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071419-78729258.jpeg[/url])



It would seem not:

https://www.timeout.com/tokyo/restaurants/robot-restaurant-1 (https://www.timeout.com/tokyo/restaurants/robot-restaurant-1)

http://www.shinjuku-robot.com/pc/gallery.php?lng=en (http://www.shinjuku-robot.com/pc/gallery.php?lng=en)

though personally I'd rather spend the cost of the show on trains.

Anyway 'twas nice meeting and putting a name to a face  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: tutenkhamunsleeping on June 22, 2019, 08:15:49 AM
I thought heíd have more arms to hold :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 22, 2019, 08:29:15 AM
Glad you met up. Thanks for the photos and adventure story
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Graham on June 22, 2019, 08:40:06 AM
@Bealman (https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?action=profile;u=255), have thoroughly enjoyed your sojourn through Japan, where next ?
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 22, 2019, 08:58:05 AM
Thanks, Graham. Where next? All depends on my ankle recovering, unfortunately.

There are few previous Bealman adventures scattered around the forum and in this section if you're interested.  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 22, 2019, 09:00:25 AM
Looking at the prices in your robot links, Ian, I'm sure glad we gave that a miss!!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 22, 2019, 01:56:32 PM
Poor Squiddy. Little does he know that life after meeting Bealman is never the same. I had to take out another mortgage to afford the psychiatrist's bills necessary after an encounter or two with George ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: DarrwestLU6 on June 22, 2019, 04:03:09 PM
Looked like a lot of fun!
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 04:03:46 AM
...our final day in Tokyo was spent resting at the streetside bar, as the flight home wasn't until late afternoon, and it was going to be a long trip with a change of plane at Cairns. However, railsquid kindly texted a map showing me how to get to the model railway store, which was near Shinjuku station.

The model railway store turned out to be a small section of a huge, and I mean like HUGE, department store called KEIO. To my surprise, the model railway department was well stocked with model railway supplies, on a floor next to stationary. An even better surprise was the prices of the large selection of Kato locomotives. Compared to prices in stores in Australia, these were a bargain! Here I picked up the diesel mentioned earlier in the thread:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/65/255-020618050145.jpeg)

In hindsight, I wish I'd bought more. Thanks to railsquid's excellent layout thread, building a small Japanese layout is starting to look not such a bad idea. However, at the time, I thought there's not much point, as I model BR green. Squiddy has suggested I paint the diesel green to represent a Class 17, which also isn't such a bad idea, as it would seem that the commercial model isn't going to happen.

While the assistant was testing the loco for me (he spoke excellent English, and informed me he had two British locomotives, one by Farish, and the other by Dapol), Mrs B went into the stationary section and picked up an inkpad and some cute panda stamps which have proven to be a smash hit with her classes at school.

All loaded up, it was time to head to the station. an art deco-ish clock tower:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071424-787371169.jpeg)

Trains coming and going....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071423-787351629.jpeg)

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071424-78737380.jpeg)

We were waiting for the NEX (Narita Airport Express), which of course pulled in right on time:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071423-78735763.jpeg)

Personally, I think it's a strange ugly-looking beast, but there is no doubt that it is well designed for the job. It's fast, comfortable, and most importantly, has heaps of luggage space for all the baggage which inevitably goes with air travellers.

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071422-787332405.jpeg)

As Mrs B fell asleep on the train, I took my last, not very good, parting shot of Japan.....

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071415-787181500.jpeg)

....until next time!.....  :thumbsup: :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: crewearpley40 on June 23, 2019, 05:34:13 AM
Thanks ive certainly enjoyed every minute of your adventure. Heres to next time
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 23, 2019, 06:54:23 AM
Me too,

Has been a very enjoyable trip. We haven't been on holiday for about 4 years now so it has been great to have been an armchair traveller with you.

Cheers weave  :beers:

Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Train Waiting on June 23, 2019, 08:32:33 AM
Thank you very much indeed, George.

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this thread and the photographs have been absolutely fascinating.

Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Ali Smith on June 23, 2019, 08:52:36 AM
Really enjoyed your adventure. Thanks for taking the trouble to post it.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on June 23, 2019, 09:35:40 AM
Thanks for a very enjoyable saga.

 :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Newportnobby on June 23, 2019, 10:10:39 AM
It's all been most entertaining, George.
If only t'were possible to 'beam' to foreign parts, look at what you want and then beam back again (sigh emoji)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: emjaybee on June 23, 2019, 10:17:19 AM
I'm hoping that by the time cars are outlawed well be able to do exactly that.
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 10:18:45 AM
Like the bloke who got done for contempt of court when asked if he had anything to say for himself.

"Beam me up, Scotty"

 ;) :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 10:21:14 AM
Anyway, the saga ain't quite finished yet.... I came away from Japan with most definite opinions. Epilogue to come   :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Hiawatha on June 23, 2019, 10:56:44 AM
I also want to thank you for this very enjoyable series of posts. :thumbsup:

I havenít been to Japan but my mother visited about a decade ago, and your photos reminded me very much of her pictures as she had visited some of the same places (she even got to see the giant Buddha ;) ), and like you she didnít take enough photos of Shinkansens. :D

Looking forward to the epilogue! :)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: railsquid on June 23, 2019, 11:05:16 AM
...our final day in Tokyo was spent resting at the streetside bar, as the flight home wasn't until late afternoon, and it was going to be a long trip with a change of plane at Cairns. However, railsquid kindly texted a map showing me how to get to the model railway store, which was near Shinjuku station.

The model railway store turned out to be a small section of a huge, and I mean like HUGE, department store called KEIO. To my surprise, the model railway department was well stocked with model railway supplies, on a floor next to stationary.

If I may release my inner pedant, the model railway store is a store-within-a-store, not run directly by the department store but a branch of a fairly large model railway shop chain. 20 years ago that would probably have been the case, but the monolithic department stores have outsourced the more specialist stuff.

Anyway the entire department store is built on top of the Keio Line's Shinjuku terminus, and guess what the neighbouring Odakyu department store is built on top of? Very common pattern with private railway lines, they're actually more than just railways and are usually associated with a chain of department stores, supermarkets etc. in the areas they serve.

An even better surprise was the prices of the large selection of Kato locomotives.
Compared to prices in stores in Australia, these were a bargain! Here I picked up the diesel mentioned earlier in the thread:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/65/255-020618050145.jpeg)

In hindsight, I wish I'd bought more. Thanks to railsquid's excellent layout thread, building a small Japanese layout is starting to look not such a bad idea.

Go, you know you it makes sense  :bounce:

We were waiting for the NEX (Narita Airport Express), which of course pulled in right on time:

(https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/gallery/78/255-220619071423-78735763.jpeg)

Personally, I think it's a strange ugly-looking beast, but there is no doubt that it is well designed for the job. It's fast, comfortable, and most importantly, has heaps of luggage space for all the baggage which inevitably goes with air travellers.


You should be able to identify the train on the left too now ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 11:11:54 AM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Once again, Squiddy to the rescue!

As to identifying the train on the left, I should, but I'm currently having a beer watching NSW vs QLD live from Perth (which exasperates me as Western Australia don't play rugby league).....
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 11:22:00 AM
It's pouring down in WA! it never rains in WA!  ;D
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 23, 2019, 11:29:30 AM
Wife's popped out so just put it on out of interest. The stadium doesn't look very full but that could be because it looks like it's absolutely (family forum) chucking it down.

Enjoy the game.

Cheers weave  :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 23, 2019, 11:30:43 AM
Should have read your post first  :doh:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 11:36:02 AM
 :laughabovepost:

All good, mate. Just ringing a cab to go home from club.  ;) :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: weave on June 23, 2019, 11:54:32 AM
Take a pic and start a new 'Bealman's Excellent Cab Adventures' thread where you then take pics on the way home of all the poor sods waiting for a bus  :D

 :beers:
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 12:22:05 PM
 :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost: :laughabovepost:

Awesome!

I just got rained on and got an overly expensive cab.

Anyway, it's 2019. not the halcyon days of the early 20th century.....

If they ever existed  ;)
Title: Re: Bealman's Excellent Japanese Adventure!
Post by: Bealman on June 23, 2019, 11:55:20 PM
For anyone remotely interested, and I think I am probably the only one, the operative word being remotely....

NSW 38 QLD 6  :)