Something’s Fishy Around Here

The Japanese eat a lot of fish. This is an island country, so nothing about that statement should be surprising. I enjoy fish, but if I didn’t do so, then travel here might be difficult because it can show up in unexpected places. For example, P stated this morning that the boiled vegetables at breakfast seemed to be cooked with fish. Or a soy dumpling the other day was cooked in oil that clearly had also been used for fish. I’m certain it is elsewhere as well, but since I eat fish I don’t notice it as much as I otherwise might.


Of course, fish calls for fish markets, and that was today’s first stop: The Tsujiki Fish Market, sitting on the shores of Tokyo Harbor. The grandest spectacle here is reported to be a tuna auction early in the morning, but to view that, we would have had to line up at 330 AM. Instead we planned to arrive at 9, which is when our numerous resources stated the market opens to the public.


The sun shone high in the Tokyo sky today and the weather was warm as we stepped out into the streets of this megalopolis. This is quite a change from the inclement weather of yesterday.


When we arrived shortly after 9, the signs stated we couldn’t enter until 10. So instead we skirted the edge of the market.


Here’s a small shrine in the market.


We passed by some random stalls looking out onto the market. In this case they were selling wasabi.


And another shrine. The dragon’s head was cool.


In the process of circling the market, we actually got a wonderful view of the harbor.


Returning to the main part of the market, we saw people lining up to go in, so we joined the queue where we were guided in groups past the industrial machinery, forklifts, and trucks. We were led in along the grungy industrial edge of the market. Somewhere over the loudspeaker, P heard an announcement with instructions against photography.


I followed those instructions for about 200 yards. By that point I saw plenty of people taking photographs and decided to join in. 


The fish were gorgeous.


The scallops were gorgeous.


By they time they had let us in, the market was starting to wind down. It wasn’t long until shopkeepers were putting things away. Still, the whole thing was absolutely stunning.


On the way out of the market we passed this man cutting ice.


Eventually, our steps guided us to one of the parks in the city, where we saw this raven daringly approach a cat.


And took in this view of the Tokyo Tower.

And this opposite view of the harbor


We paused at a tea house yet again. We did better with the tea this time around, as the shopkeepers had instructions in English. 


These ducks were resting in the pond right outside the tea house. I was impressed that they were all oriented in the same direction.


Gradually we were working our way over to the Tokyo Tower. On the way we stopped for sushi. The sushi has been amazing. We have had overall more nigiri sushi here, and fewer rolls. Our favorite remains the medium fatty blue tuna.


The tower turned out to be rather expensive, as are many things here, and we couldn’t go all the way up. As such, we didn’t actually climb the tower, but in the end we still had a spectacular morning and afternoon in Tokyo

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