Tokyo to New York

POSTED BY DANNY CHOO On Fri 2012/10/12 20:43 JST in Travel

Have always wanted to visit the Big Apple but never had the opportunity to visit. That opportunity came about with an invite to speak at the New York Comic Con that takes place today (Friday) through Sunday at the Javis Center.

I'm speaking tomorrow (Saturday), October 13, 2:45 - 3:45 pm at room 1A06 and before that I will be moderating the panel for Asakawa Yuu (the voice of Megurine Luka) today (Friday), October 12, 2:45 - 3:45 pm at room 1A23.

Also, Good Smile Company are at NYCC too at booth #3021 where Moekana will be on sale too!

Arrived in New York just a couple of days ago and slowly getting over jetlag. The city is just how I imagined it would be and more - just like the movies! Tokyo is great and all that but New York is a mighty fine city too!

Zooming back in time to Tokyo 3AM - early morning flight ToT. When I first started to travel, I would carry everything including the kitchen sink - then realised over time that I only really needed 20% of what I took - I travel much lighter these days.

Next time when you travel, take note of what you took and what you actually used on your trip - dont get into the comfort zone and take stuff "just in case" - if you find that you need something then I'm sure you can get it at your destination. The extra stuff that you take "just in case" is a hassle and waste of your precious time - time that you dont have!

Arrival at Haneda airport - no public transport at this time of the day at all so we take a taxi. Two pieces of luggage between wifey and me.
Just a note for you to not touch Japanese taxi doors - they are controlled by the driver.

Haneda is located in Tokyo and where possible you should choose it as your destination airport - unless flights arrive very late at night as you will have to get a taxi to head into the city - which is not too bad anyway.
We see folks sleeping over night at Haneda as they have early morning flights.

Morning brekkie with Psy at the business lounge.

Our trusty steed. Our plane seemed to have flown faster that any previous flights from Tokyo. Normally takes us 9 hours to get to Seattle but after 5 hours the plane was already over Canada.

Travelling on American Airlines today - very roomy business class and seats which fold fairly flat for a long kip.

Brekkie was good! Some sort of hot coconut sauce for the pancakes.

Good Morning New York.

JFK Touchdown. Driver takes us downtown.

Arrive about 6:30AM at the hotel - way to early to check in (all rooms full too) - dump bags and head out.

Lovely city.

Food everywhere on the street corners.

Huge brick buildings are lovely to look at.

New York has some crazy high skyscrapers.

At the Japan Foundation office - they are the folks who brought me over. They are a government funded body whose mission it is to propagate Japanese culture and language in the US. They also run Japanese language courses too.

Time to explore the city.

Traffic warden dances as she directs traffic.

Exploring Central Park.
Risu = Squirrel.

Seen that bridge in Home Alone.

Prepping the skating rink - I hear it gets quite cold in the city during Winter

Safety in numbers.

I'm still a Mac user but a lot of the magic has gone since I switched to Android ^^;

No superheroes visible in the streets today.

Convenient censoring at the Rockefeller Center.

It was Columbus Day - a load of festivities on the streets.

I understand that shoe shining is a job but I dont think I could ask any other human to clean my shoes for me.

Nice one ^^;

"Special"? How does this compare to parking prices where you are?

Times Square - just like the movies!

Zit underneath my nose just before a talk! How old do I have to be to stop getting zits? ^^; As a teenager I used to have a major zit problem. Do you have any anti zit secrets that you want to share with fellow readers?

How to blend in with the locals - walk around with a cuppa Starbucks.

A stroll around the Times Square area.


Then its time to venture underground. The trains are nothing like the beaten up graffiti trains that I've seen in the movies - although the conditions of the trains do vary depending on the line you take apparently. A comrade mentioned that some carriages many moons ago would have bullet holes in the window ^^;
What are the conditions of the subway like in your neck of the woods?

Arrival at Canal Street.

Exploring China Town seeking noms.

One of my most fave Chinese dishes - Wonton Noodles - the noodles do tend to have an odd smell but taste great. Not been possible to find decent tasting Wonton Noodles in Japan. Whats your fave Chinese dish?

Nice name and branding of that Hong Kong Station restaurant.

America's Mickey Mouse looked quite different that I originally imagined.

Looks like Yu Gi Oh is quite popular over here?

I'll bring the amor next time I'm in New York ^^;

Something to carry around with you or stick down your underpants?

This Poll is now expired

Then its time for some sweets. I noticed that when I order tea in the US, all I get is a cup with one of those instant teabags - In some cases I need to fill up with hot water myself ^^;

Back on the trains heading to hotel - should be checking in time soon.

I never was a Tekken fan - never got the hang of those combos.

Like these retro posters on the streets.

Finally able to check in.

Bag of travel gadgets. Before I travel I would use to run around the house unplugging stuff to take on the trip - and when getting back, I would waste time plugging everything back in.
This time round I prepared this case which will just keep these adapters and wot not in it. When I get back to Japan, I'll leave everything in the case which I can just pick up in a few weeks time when I travel to Singapore.
This does mean that I need to buy extra adapters but the time saved is well worth it.

Charging up our gear.

Sweet Yuki-chan is accompanying us this time.

Bought a SIM card to make local calls but I didn't jailbreak my old iPhone 3GS properly ToT
The Galaxy S3 is unlocked but I need to keep my Japanese phone with the original number as I need to be accessible.

Still veeeery jetlagged, slept until the evening and then ventured out to Times Square again to see what it looks like at night - our hotel is located a block away from there.

Even at about 12:30AM, the city is lively. Many police on the streets too so one can feel safe out n about at this time.

Many places open at this hour too including apparel shops.

I hear that some of these street food vendors can be quite delicious...

...but it depends on which one you choose ^^;
I notice that many folks in the US like to burn their meat until its charcoal black?! In Japan, I have visitors who come over from the US - when I take them to Yakiniku (meat that you grill yourself), I always see them grill it until its black - is that normal?!

Folks on the streets ask money for food, some ask because they need some weed and are very open about it ^^;

1 pack of nuts is 2.50 USD. I order 1 and hand over 10 USD.
The guy hands me the bag of nuts and continues as if our transaction is done - looks like he is hoping that I forgot about the change.
I stay there and he realizes that I have not forgotten about my change. He hands me another bag of nuts and gives me 6 USD change - he then continues to mix his nuts...

My observation of mobile usage in New York City - most folks use an iPhone - followed next by the Galaxy S3. But iPhone usage is waaaay more than the Galaxy.
What phone is the most popular in your region based on your observation - and not from news.

Some of the architecture on the modern buildings are really nice.

And just like the movies - there is always steam coming up from underground - why is that? Is it hot springs?!

Grabbing some noms before heading back to the hotel.

This Poll is now expired