Yes, suprisingly enough, most Japanese streets have no name, and a compicated numbering system. Example: here's the hostel's address: Homeikan hostel, 10-5 Hongo, 5-Chome, Bunkyo-Ku, Tokyo. Anyway, he finally found it and it turned out to be a traditional, old-fashioned Japanese guesthouse where you take your shoes off at the door (they give you little slippers) and the rooms have sliding doors and futons and little tables that you kneel up to. Very traditional. I took a quick walk around the neighborhood then called it a night.
The next day was my one full day for sightseeing, and the choices for a huge city like Tokyo were almost overwhelming. I first attacked the dreaded metro, which was not quite as bad as I thought. Some signs had English names for stations, which is the most critical. The rest I figured out by asking questions and reading signs and maps. I found the Japanese to be friendly and helpful. Even the crustiest old attendant or station guard seemed to know enough English to point me in the right direction. "Go revel three, turn light, track two". I had to quickly learn to translate that funny mixup they have with their L's and R's.
I should have taken some better photos of the subway stations, but I took one of a bunch of schoolkids waiting for their train-- their teachers must have told them all to sit down! And one of a woman in a kimono, and wearing one of those surgical masks that lots of people here wear, for the pollution. Later I spotted a policeman wearing one and snapped this shot. I also took a photo of a Japanese fire truck for Jim to see.
Then it was time to go, and I slugged my way one last time through the metro back to the airport, and can now officially say I have conquered the Tokyo subway-- and compared to that, ANY underground will be easy! Paris? No problem! Istanbul? Piece of cake! Speaking of that, I'll be there soon, but first I have to write about Singapore. See ya there!