POSTED BY DANNY CHOO On Sun 2010/12/26 10:40 JST in Places to visit in Japan

Recently spent a nice Sunday afternoon in the nearby neighborhood of Jiyugaoka 自由が丘].
Jiyugaoka is located in the Meguro ward and is well known for its abundance in restaurants and Zakka shops.
Zakka is used to refer to goods that improves ones home, life and outlook - more at Wikipedia.

Jiyugaoka is also full of young folks and seems to be popular with young (cute) ladies.
Here we see two ladies making some crepe for us. Why do girls in white shirts look awesome?

This is a Shokken machine. One would choose what they want to eat, press the appropriate button and then get the ticket to give to the staff. This means that staff don't need to bother with handling money - time saved from taking money from the customer and giving them change.

I chose to have an apple n custard crepe.

And this is what it looks like. Yum

Crepe is popular with young folks and you can see queues of them lining up for one in places like Shinjuku, Shibuya and Harajuku.

These pictures are not in order ^^;
We cycled to Jiyugaoka and filled up the tires with some yummy 0 yen air.

Just over a year ago, I couldn't ride a bicycle at all and started to learn when my wife got a smaller bike. Being able to ride bike has changed the way we live and has also enabled us to go exploring easily around Tokyo.

Not sure what the prices of cars are like in your gaff but they are quite cheap in Japan. My car knowledge is minimal but this one is going for 730000 yen.

The Japanese love to line up for stuff. Here they needed a guard (there are more people to his right) to manage folks lining up for some roll cake...

Its quite difficult to park ones bike as there are not many places to do so. Look for supermarkets where they have bike parking for customers ^^;

Jiyugaoka is regularly chosen as the "most want to live in" town. I've previously wanted to live here too.

Am pretty happy with where we live now though - very different from the way I felt when living in Hackney London which was voted one of the worst places to live in the UK ^^;

If you are spending the day at Shibuya, you may want to make a quick trip to Jiyugaoka - its only a few stops from Shibuya. Get off at Jiyugaoka Station on the Tokyu line.
Nice place to spend a Sunday afternoon.

You'll probably have to enlarge this one - nice girlie spotted in Counter Strike.

You will find Japanese, Spanish, Korean, Thai, Chinese and a whole load of gourmet from all over za warudo.

A quiet backstreet.

We decided to have some Doner kebab. Tasted good but not as good as the Kebabs in the UK. He took ages making it though. 800 yen for a portion.

Exploring Jiyugaoka.

I hear the beef bowl or Gyudon can be found in many places in the US. Seen some in China too. I'm guessing they don't serve it with raw egg in those regions?

I love the Fumikiri train crossings. Saw them often in J Dorama and anime a lot when living in the UK. I think I see less of them now that I live here though ^^;

No pets, no photography, no recording (?!), no taking notes (of prices and goods), no smoking and no farting.

You can many apparel stores like Zara, Gap and Next at Jiyugaoka.

More exploring.

Even the estate agents have their own mascot characters.

Saw a few fortune telling places.

Have a few comrades who live here - they got lovely huge houses.

Many gaijin can be seen in Jiyugaoka too. Speaking of gaijin, some foreigners think that gaijin is a racist term because its the short form of Gaikokujin .

There are many abbreviated words in Japanese like "Keitai" (short for "Keitai Denwa" meaning mobile phone) or "Teiki" (short for Teiki Ken meaning commuter pass) and so on.

For those who have wondered what these things stuck on lampposts are - they are usually real estate info on newly built properties nearby.

The Fugu fish contains a poison called Tetrodotoxin which if consumed paralyses ones body while the victim is fully conscious. 50% - 80% then die within 24 hours.

Fugu is expensive and apparently has a bland taste but the excitement at the chance of dying by eating Fugu has made it a popular dish. Apparently, 100 people die each year from eating fugu that has not been prepared properly. You'd think that humans would get the message that this is a dangerous fish from the spikes around its body.

Trying on some new clothes at Next. Thought I'd choose black for a change.

Having a picnic in the middle of the train tracks.

Grabbing some coffee at the end of the afternoon at the Starbucks clone Excelsior Caffe. Notice their logo on that page - it used to be green and look exactly the same as the Starbucks logo until Starbucks came in with the lawsuit.

Where there is nourishment, there be queues of people.

Coffee n cake with Kagami.

Then its time for us to cycle back home.

A photo of the Jiyugaoka Eki Mae back many many many moons ago.

And this is what Eki Mae looks like today.

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