Monday, May 6

Charna went off on her own while Robin, Steve and I went to Shinjuku Gyoen National Park, a huge green space in the midst of a densely populated area, an oasis of quiet with a formal garden, a landscape garden and a Japanese garden.

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From there we went looking for a vegetarian restaurant. While I planned the trip overall, Robin has researched veggie restaurants. Not easy to find here. This one was on the seventh floor of Isetan Department Store. Robin had trouble believing this would be good, but I was hungry and tired of walking and persuaded her to try. We were seated in a lovely outdoor garden and the food was great. I had a salad with locally grown vegetables. Tokyo has an urban farms movement. We finished at Isetan by touring the basement food section where I got a real baguette. When I was here previously I frequently found myself looking for decent bread. The Japanese prefer something that resembles Wonder Bread but is even spongier. On previous trips I was able to get real bread in some French bakeries. This trip I’ve found fewer bakeries with more items that look good but definitely have the preferred spongy texture.

Finally, totally wiped out, I returned to our little house leaving R & S to explore on their own.

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