Day 2 in Tokyo: Odaiba

Jet lag and race nerves combined last night to leave me wide awake at 3 am. So please excuse me if this isn't the most coherent- it's already been a long day!

After hitting up the Japanese breakfast again (seriously, I am going to start eating rice, tofu and chicken for breakfast at home; it makes me feel so good), we headed out on our own. Yesterday we had the comfort of a bus driver and a tour guide, but today we were solo. Our trepidation is justified- the station by our hotel, Shinjuku station, is the busiest train station in THE WORLD. There are floors and floors of trains and buses and subways and it is insanely crowded. Miraculously, though we managed to find our first subway, get off at the right station, switch trains, and then get off at the right station again. Go us!

We spent the morning in Odaiba which is across Tokyo bay from central Tokyo. It was really pretty crossing over the bay on the above ground metro and seeing the harbor and beaches. We spent several hours at Miraikan, the National Museum of Emerging Sciences and Innovation. We saw all kinds of amazing things. I was fascinated by fabrics that stay constantly cool or constantly warm. We got to go inside an actual deep sea submarine and see how much a styrofoam cup shrinks under the deep pressure of the ocean. We got to try our hands at laparoscopic surgery (p.s. you don't want either of us as your surgeon). By far the coolest thing was Asimo, an adorable robot who can run, play soccer, and dance.

For lunch, we once again relied on plastic food replicas and a lot of pointing and gesturing to order. What we get isn't always exactly what we expect, but it is always good!

We then enjoyed a sunny walk down the Central Promenade to Mega Web, a Toyota showroom of their advanced technology.

Our tour guide told us that the Japanese love to dress up and she wasn't kidding. All over Odiba there were teenagers in crazy costumes doing role play games and taking pictures of each other.

Next we hopped on the subway again to head to East Shinjuku to check out a shrine and the red light district. Unfortunately, this time we didn't end up quite where we wanted to. People here are so incredibly friendly and helpful. Seriously about 5 people stopped to ask us if we needed help in the 5 minutes we were standing outside the station consulting our map. We decided to scrap our original plan, enjoy a leisurely snack, and just head back to the hotel. I'd already spent way too much time on my feet and needed to get my race stuff in order. In just a few minutes we are meeting the Marathon Tours group for a pasta dinner and then it is an early bed time to rest up for race day tomorrow!!