Seeing is believing.
When I started Year 2020 a year ago, I was full of excitement and expectations; it was Tokyo Olympics Year.
None of us dreamed of adopting new normals in our daily life.
Year 2020 was surely a tough year for all of us.
However, the pandemics made me THINK.
Think of my health, life style, work style, relationships, etc.
In fact, I managed to improve my health, life style and mentality.
I’m happier and started challenging a new project with friends.
I appreciate and value bonding and networking more.
Although we stayed in playing games with niece; it was so much fun.
I welcomed New Year with excitement and expectation.
Let’s try to make Year 2021 interesting!
I had a meeting with Shangri-La Hotel Tokyo.
I had a tour of hotel rooms and banquet rooms for future events (if any).
I like their mask case, LIMAX which is simple yet stylish.
It’s made of eco friendly material yet antibacterial: limestone.
I will keep it and use it for sure.
It’s nice weather, therefore, I decided to walk back home after the meeting – another mini sightseeing in Tokyo.
There is a clock to count down to Olympic day at the Tokyo Station.
Looking at the current situation, honestly, I wonder we would be able to host such a large event in 2021.
I hope I am wrong about it.
Nonetheless, I felt good walking on the street to the Imperial Palace because there are less people!
Usually there would be many local and foreign travelers covering this street.
Sakashita Mon (Sakashita Gate)
Nijubashi (Double Bridge) or officially called Seimon Tetsuhashi (Steel Bridge of the Main Gate).
This steel bridge was originally made by wood, then, reinforced by wooden beams.
This is why this bridge is called Nijubashi or Double Bridge.
Sakurada Mon (Sakurada Gate)
The other side (outside) of Sakurada Mon
Sun is setting and peaceful scenery.
I continued walking towards Kasumigaseki area where Japanese government buildings are.
The Diet Building
I’ve been enjoying Mini Tokyo Sightseeing.
Today, after expiring my subway commuter pass on 15 May 2020, I didn’t renew my pass and started walking to the office.
The rainy season is over so it’s VERY HOT in Tokyo now; therefore, I need a backpack to carry many more new necessaries to the office.
These are new necessaries in addition to normal etiquettes things such as tissue, cosmetics for retouch, hand cream, wallet, cough drops and eco bag.
It’s heavier now but these are necessaries.
We need to face this to check on our body temperature and wearing a mask to enter movie, gym, etc.
The State of Emergency was lifted; weather is getting nice so decided to go to Moto-Hakone for Onsen (Hot Spring).
Choco found his stay over goods at the entrance so he got excited.
On the way to Moto-Hakone, we stopped to get our lunch and I had my BigMac and Ramune Shake.
Ramune shake (Japanese traditional soda flavored shake) is seasonal and limited menu.
It finishes serving either finishing the ingredients or serving duration.
We arrived Moto-Hakone early so that we stopped at Ashinoko (Ashino Lake).
Some people are enjoying fishing.
I could see a fish, very peaceful.
We checked in at Caro Foresta Moto-Hakone Lucia at 3 pm.
This time, I have chosen a western style room.
There are welcome Onsen Tamago (Hot Spring Boiled Eggs) and cookies for Choco.
These Onsen Tamago were boiled at Ohwakudani: the origin of natural Onsen.
These eggs are also known as good luck because we believe one egg can bring us longer life, 9 years, by eating it.
The air is fresh there.
This hotel is dog friendly and I was busy using facilities for Choco.
First, he exercised at the Dog Run (Dog Playground) at the entrance.
Hakone is famous for Onsen (Hot Spring).
The hotel is equipped with Onsen facility for Choco as well!
He had his first Onsen of his life and it was Iou Onsen (Sulfur based Onsen).
I also dipped myself at Onsen.
After refreshing, I had a nice French for dinner.
All dishes are delicious.
I got so excited when I received the dessert plate!
There is Choco!
After dinner, I took Choco for Indoor Dog Run.
This Indoor Dog Run is opened for 24 hours.
Both of us got tired and slept well.
First thing I did on the next day was dipping in the Onsen.
In the morning, I found a dog greeting me from outside!
I had a nice Japanese breakfast.
After breakfast, I took Choco to the Wood Dog Run.
Again, I took him to the Dog Run at the entrance and Indoor.
The check out time is 11 am; therefore, we rest in the room before checking out.
Choco must have so much fun because he slept in the car on the way back to Tokyo.
I had a big breakfast so I had a late lunch at Misoichi, Nakameguro Shop.
I had a basic Miso Ramen with toppings of corns and butter.
I like it!
After unpacking and resting, went for late quick bite to say hello and congratulate reopening after Stay Home Request to our friend, Sushiya no Goto (Goto’s Sushi Shop), Roppongi.
It’s nice to see smiling face of Taisho (Master) and Mama san (Madam).
I enjoyed Sushi very much after two months!?
It was memorable two days.
According to the media, on 1 June 2020 (the first Monday after government lifted the State of Emergency), the number of commuters has increased.
To avoid taking subways because I won’t have enough social distancing there, I started to walk to office.
During the State of Emergency, I was required to go to the office twice in a week so I could manage it; however, from 1 June 2020, I’m required to go to the office every weekdays.
As reported in previous blog, it takes 1 hour or 4 km to reach office.
It’s getting warm outside, reaching to 30C with strong sunlight.
Walking with a mask makes me feel hot which leads me to sweat.
Today, I tie my hair.
And carry a drink (amino) in small bottle.
My mask gets wet with my sweat by the time I reach to the office so I keep some (backup) at the office.
In addition, I reinforced footwear.
I have already introduced Asics Walking before.
I started wearing this brand when I hurt my knee because cushions are soft.
I bought other colors and styles that I don’t have yet.
I also bought Tokyo Olympics designed sneaker for memory.
These will surely assist my walking to the office.
Choco checked its quality and approved. hahaha
I’m more ready for next week.
Tokyo Metropolitan Government shifted businesses to Step 2 on Monday, 1 June 2020.
Step 2 allows more businesses to reopen and to operate longer hours.
Gym finally opened on Monday, 1 June 2020; I went on Tuesday, 2 June 2020 after two months.
Gym is also taking counter measures to COVID.
There is a plastic sheet at the reception counter to protect staffs from spread of COVID.
Trainers and trainees need to wear a mask while exercise.
Wipe an equipment with sanitizer after every use.
Placed equipment with enough gap.
Stops providing stone bath service for now.
It’s nice to get a professional guide for exercise.
Then as usual, I visited 100 Yen Shop Can Do for shopping.
I usually buy consumable goods there and my stock became low after two months.
I happily bought 21 products there including masks and a wet tissue.
I was hoping to relax on businesses more by shifting to Step 3.
However, I received a flash news earlier on Tuesday, 2 June 2020 that Tokyo recorded 34 new cases on the day which indicates a peek.
Tokyo Metropolitan Government announced Tokyo Alert which means the State of Emergency for Tokyo; but didn’t request for closing businesses.
The economy needs to move now; therefore, it remained Step 2 for Business.
However, with Tokyo Alert, people need to be more careful and corporate to voluntarily Stay Home to manage COVID if we want businesses to stay operating.
The State of Emergency, Tokyo Alert, Stay Home, Social Distancing, Step 1, 2 & 3 for Business, the Second Wave, Masks, Sanitizer, etc., these vocabularies remind me we are living in New Normal Society.
When I take Choco out for a walk (or shall I say carry because he like to be carried), I try to take him a different route.
Yes, I walk at the park often but I try the path reversing it the next day hoping to look different for Choco.
Today, we went out when it’s still bright out.
I walked a path that I haven’t tried before.
It became an exciting adventure for me as well.
It led us to the other side of Nogizaka Station or Route 319.
I walked through Roppongi Tunnel where Street Painting Project was conducted by Tokyo Metropolitan Government.
There are five street paintings.
Sometime I pass it quickly by car.
Today, I walked to see each paintings.
Now I can go for a walk when it’s still bright.
Where to try tomorrow?
On 4 May 2020, Japanese government announced the extension of the State of Emergency till end of May 2020.
Government requested businesses to continue considering closing its business (especially retailers and services) and working from home if possible.
I’m glad to know that my boss decoded to cooperate to government’s request and to continue working from home.
However, we are still require to return to office once a week to check on office and settle office administrative matters.
And today, we are required to go to the office.
Though Japanese government announced the extension of the State of Emergency and many of us will continue to work From home; I expected a large number of office staffs to go to office today because the long Japanese National Holidays, Golden Week, just ended yesterday.
As I mentioned earlier, I don’t mind to work at the office but I do mind to take a crowded subway.
The weather is getting better (20C – 28C) so I decided to walk to the office today.
It takes 1 hour walk or 4 km or 4 subway stations to the office.
On the way back, I stopped by few stores to look for and buy a battery for thermometer, bulbs and grocery.
Furthermore, today, Choco patiently waited for me so I took him for a walk.
Today I walked a total of 10 km or 18,153 steps.
Now I’m exhausted and ready to hit the bed.
This week, we need to go back to office again tomorrow; and YES, I plan to walk to the office.
I hope the waking would contribute to accelerate my weight loss. hahaha