Birthday Man


As of last weekend, I’m officially in the middle of my late 30s. And where better to spend a birthday that in one of the greatest cities on the planet. We spent the entire weekend in Tokyo with no real agenda, which ended up being an action-packed three days.

Instead of a long rundown of events, please enjoy some photos from the weekend.

Dinner with Friends

An unexpected dinner with our Airbnb hosts Yusuke and Hiroki at Rokumonsen, a monjayaki (or monja as it’s commonly called) place in Asakusa.


Yusuke (one of our Airbnb hosts) scrapes the monja off the griddle. The mixture of cabbage, cheese, mochi and sauce cooks to the griddle and is basically a gooey top with a crispy bottom.

Senso-ji Temple

A rarity: nobody in front of Kaminarimon Gate at Senso-ji Temple in Asakusa


Akihabara Electric Town. These blocks are filled with video arcades, electronic shops and maid cafes. A little something for everyone.


My birthday lunch! Vegan buffet at Loving Hut in Chiyoda. This was plate one of three or four… the food coma set in at some point.

Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame Museum

The Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame Museum at Tokyo Dome. This was one of my favorite things we’ve done recently and will warrant its own post in the near future.

Skytree and Asahi Flame

Tokyo Skytree and the Asahi Beer Hall flame sculpture from the Asakusa side of the Sumida River. The locals call the Asahi sculpture “kin no unko” (金のうんこ) or “the golden turd.” Our host didn’t know the English translation and I’ll never un-see his pantomime that clearly translated said meaning.

Tokyo Skytree from the Airbnb

The view from the front of our home away from home. Not too shabby.

The Gate Hotel Kanarimon

Birthday drinks on the 13th floor of a restaurant overlooking Asakusa.

Senso-ji Temple

The main hall and pagoda of Senso-ji Temple as seen from a nearby restaurant.

This playground near Tokyo Skytree had an awesome metal-roller propelled slide. We only saw adults use it in the short time we were there. Video below.

Shark Tank

A shark swimming in the tank at Sumida Aquarium in Tokyo Skytown. The window of the tank doubled as a projection screen for a flyover movie of the city.

Penguin at Sumida Aquarium

Sumida Aquarium had a great penguin exhibit.

Penguins at Sumida Aquarium

Penguins swimming in the tank at Sumida Aquarium

Sumida Aquarium Jellyfish

The first exhibits at Sumida Aquarium are jellyfish illuminated by changing colors. It was truly impressive.

Fish tank at Sumida Aquarium

Sumida Aquarium did its best to recreate native environments for the different species of sea life in its keep.

Tokyo Skytree

Looking up from the near the base of Tokyo Skytree, which at 634 meters is the tallest structure in Japan, the tallest tower in the world and the second-tallest structure in the world behind Dubai’s Burj Khalifa Tower.


  • Reply Brian January 28, 2015 at 9:54 pm

    Really glad to see you having fun Robert and taking full advantage of the time you’re spending over there. You’re doing a top notch job documenting it as well. I would expect nothing less from you 🙂

  • Reply Lise February 28, 2015 at 4:08 am

    Happy WAY late birthday, Rob!!! It looks like you guys had a great time. I’m so glad that I’ve decided to live vicariously through you… 😉

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