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  • this is Sakura Dori.

  • Sakura in japanese means cherry blossom.

  • So you would think this famous street in front of Tokyo station would be filled with cherry blossoms and there are a couple in front here but you can see there's so much construction going on, they have removed many of the cherry blossoms here for the construction site and you know this is a very famous street that a lot of you had walked down, there was a Starbucks here, there was, it was really dark and now it's so bright.

  • In fact, I don't even recognize it, that's Daimaru right there in the front and I'm thinking that a lot of you will not recognize just so you know there are actually cherry blossoms on Sakura Dori, it's just the other way going over towards um I think that's mitsukoshi or Matsuzakaya, I'm not sure that department store, so there are cherry blossoms here.

  • But my point is I don't think a lot of you are gonna recognize Tokyo when you do return, it's just so different.

  • Someone will walk down the street and just with my eyes totally shocked here, how you doing everybody like I think you've all seen the changes in Akihabara a couple of months ago, I told you that Sega a game centers were being changed to giggle and the sign event was changed about a week ago just before april because april starts the new year in Japan, so a lot of things change budget start over, it's the fiscal year, that's sort of the big year, big time april 1st in Japan tax season is over.

  • The new tax season starts for businesses.

  • Schools start again.

  • So we've got that going on here and the cherry blossoms and is right in the middle of it and that represents change.

  • That means summer, winter, winter is over and summer is on the way.

  • I missed the traffic light but I've been walking around Shibuya, I've been walking around Shinjuku, I've been walking around Akihabara Ueno, I mean now Tokyo Station, shim Boschee still kind of is the same but there's some changes going on there.

  • This is all just old show of arab building is completely gone.

  • You can see this building in the back here, that's new, that wasn't here two years ago that skyscraper in fact a lot of these buildings over towards Nihon bashi weren't here either.

  • So let's walk over to Tokyo station and then come back up, Sakura Dori because this is not the same Sakura Dori as it was last year or the year before that.

  • It's just amazing at the speed in which Tokyo Tokyo is changing.

  • This is probably the last couple of days of the cherry blossoms as well.

  • It's crazy.

  • Used to be a very narrow sidewalk with trees, Sakura trees and now it's just empty I guess if I put the camera you can see into the construction zone so there's some stuff going on in there.

  • I bet it's gonna be a big skyscraper with buildings and shops and things like that.

  • How you doing?

  • There's been so many changes as I said april is the start of a new year in Japan um the show that I was on The show that I was on called Tokyo, I I've been on that show since 2008, Episode 101, I think we had like 600 or 700 episodes in the series, one of the longest running shows on Nhk I think it was an incredible run that ended uh last week and now there's gonna be new shows on NHK it starts a change, that's what I love about spring in Japan, it's like, it's not just january 1st, it's like april 1st, it's not an april fool's thing.

  • I do like this here, look at this beautiful um painting on the side of the construction.

  • Well, they even have koi down there representing the Sakura, I guess, of Sakura Dori, which is no longer here.

  • How sad I love trees.

  • I think a lot of, you know that trees are, are so important and we lost a couple of good ones.

  • And right now in Yoyogi Park there's a lot of activists fighting to save some trees there because the mayor wants to make some kind of community center in the middle of the Yoyogi Park, which makes no sense.

  • Whereas I think residents would rather have the green space instead of more commercial areas.

  • So we're going to see what happens with that.

  • It's just really weird.

  • I came here for a reason, the end of the street and I'm gonna turn around, I took a picture not that long ago, like two years ago uh this way and I showed how many, how the sakura were lining the street.

  • It's just beautiful and now look at it, it's bear.

  • I'm my, I got my mouth open, I'm shocked and like I've never seen the sky from here.

  • Now I'm gonna cross the street just for a second.

  • I want to show you there's one holdout.

  • This is just gonna be really funny.

  • There's one holdout and this is how japanese um this is the biggest challenge on changes in an urban area like Japan where the property laws are very strict and um you just can't get stuff done sometimes.

  • Do you see this building right here?

  • It's a lone holdout.

  • This is the, I call it the ticket king, I guess it's one of those changes the discount ticket seller.

  • The entire block, this is, I'm in front of Tokyo station right now.

  • Again, this is the exit, this building here is brand new.

  • These buildings might not be around much longer.

  • There are couple of holdouts on the block.

  • This building right here which has a bunch of like loan shark shops.

  • I, and then this one ticket shop here in Goku Orange, it's just holding up, they won't sell.

  • So you have this really old rickety building in in front of what's going to be an amazing commercial area and you have to give them credit.

  • Some people don't want to sell.

  • I don't want to change and I guess they didn't, it's just weird when you do come to Tokyo remember this building, see if it's still here.

  • Maybe they're holding out for more, more cash by the way because there are no people, some of the no visitors, a lot of the busses have changed to not treat others used to be a case a bus here for 1000 young that's gone.

  • Um the bus frequencies to Narita are infrequent now and the prices have gone up like everything else.

  • So we're starting to see little changes of inflation maybe as a result of the war, maybe just supply chains may be the result of the pandemic and no tourism.

  • That industry is really, I don't know, teetering for for a long time but there is hope and I'm gonna be doing a travel update.

  • Um maybe tonight or tomorrow morning in the next 24 hours.

  • Talking about some of the developments that have taken place.

  • I get a lot of information from people.

  • Yeah.

  • Uh contacting me about this and one was really interesting.

  • I think it was Roy in Hawaii sent me a news article from the local media there that japanese terrorism industry, People were there talking about Japan opening up this summer and learning about what they, what they had to do in order to make that happen uh with the people in Hawaii and then start to start Japanese who want to visit Hawaii because I certainly would love to go to Hawaii.

  • That stuff.

  • These are like little teeny clues that give you information on when things will open.

  • Just follow the airlines.

  • That's what I always say.

  • I love this shop too because um you can always get discounted tickets.

  • It's not that much.

  • Let's see here.

  • So if you're taking the shinkansen to Kyoto, a regular price ticket would be um 13,800 for How is this?

  • Just a key is 13,320.

  • So you can get a reserved seat for a discount.

  • It's not a really big discount.

  • This one is to toy Ohashi I used to live in toy Ohashi, It's about 600 yen cheaper if you get the ticket here To Yokohama, it's about 600 yen cheaper.

  • Uh sorry that's Matsumoto Hamamatsu, my candy is getting rough.

  • That's a hamamatsu.

  • So it's about 600 yen cheaper to Hamamatsu.

  • So you can get some discounts and just even get it from the convenient the vending machine here.

  • If you want to save a little bit of money, you can do that.

  • The tickets are good.

  • They just buy it in bulk and get really good discounts mm hmm Yeah, J and T.

  • O.

  • Is going to be optimistic because optimism.

  • Optimism can can change perceptions more than than negativity.

  • I think summer.

  • I don't know.

  • I think my feeling and I've been wrong because the pandemic is so fluent fluid that it's always changing things if Australia can open things up.

  • I think that Japan is not going to be that far behind.

  • But there were signs that Japan is learning to live with the pandemic.

  • They're gonna have to do what all the other countries do or get left behind.

  • So it seems like summer is going to be open.

  • But I bet you there's going to be stipulations like I know gastric marks like you need to be in a package tour so they can hold the operators accountable for the tourists.

  • Should developments change where you know, people have to leave the country because of the pandemic or something.

  • There's also the war going on that's gonna cause a lot of problems with flights that have to go over Russia which has really ruined the postage parcels coming from Tokyo, Leaving Tokyo are, are suspended right now to europe.

  • So there seems to be a hitch in all of the things but it seems like there is some optimism but we were, I wasn't really getting much of that optimism before from these big agencies.

  • So I think it's going to be something that we have to keep an eye on because I would, I would hope that we don't miss another summer because I just know so many people that are hurting.

  • You can see the cherry blossoms have really falling off of the tree onto the ground, it is the end done sort of, there are some blossoms left on there.

  • So what I want to do is ask you, I'm back to the corner where I started here, so what I wanna do is I want to ask you to in the comments here, leave me some questions that you might have for a, for a travel update, I'm gonna be doing in the next 24 hours, I'm gonna be reading the comments to this video and give me some some questions here.

  • Also you can ask me on twitter only in Japan tv ask me on twitter some questions and I'm going to check that out and add that into the uh travel update tomorrow because I know a lot of you have been waiting for a long time, students are starting to get in from 3500 to 5002 now, I think almost 10,000, so I think when you start ramping things up like that, you can kind of see glimmers clues that give an overall picture of possible changes that are in the wind, like these buildings here.

  • But one thing has, has certainly changed and that is the city of Tokyo, like I'm standing on the corner here, I'm just in shock still of what used to be and what is no longer here, The ISIS side of Tokyo station was a really vibrant place for salary dudes to go out drink with their coworkers.

  • These are all businesses and restaurants and it's gone now.

  • So I don't know what's going to be in its place.

  • Probably another one of these um really either an office building or a high price shopping mall, but in the next year you're gonna see it here.

  • So by the time a lot of you come here will be a building where Sakura dori sakura trees used to be.

  • I can't answer questions on Visas, I don't know because I don't have a Visa.

  • I think that's something you, it varies on country to country and I think that's something that you have to work out with the embassy yourself and your, if you're coming here on a work Visa, you have to work that out, you have to work that out with um the company that is that it has hired you is working with you to get the work visa here.

  • But if you have a visa for a certain amount of for a certain job or C.

  • O.

  • E.

  • You have to keep on checking up on that and renewing that.

  • And if if it means being reissued by your employer you're going to have to do that.

  • This is something you will answer in the next travel update.

  • I know a lot of you have questions about this but I really can't say it depends on where you're from.

  • It depends on so many things about your employer, what you know when your visa was set to expire and uh some of the changes it's just things are changing so quickly.

  • Um the rules keep changing like the quarantine was was It was 14 days and then it was cut to like seven and then cut to like three and depending on where you're from like now zero, it's it's still always an evolution.

  • Michael Sasana writes in here just in case you walk by Mcdonald's and feel like getting another secret up high.

  • It's funny there used to be a Mcdonald's here, I think it's gone.

  • This is just like it used to be a Starbucks there and that's gone too.

  • But I will I will use that.

  • I use that to get some some pie from bub Ees which is a new york restaurant down there.

  • They've got really good pie and I think they have a good cherry pie I'll get for for can I for dessert tonight?

  • Thank you Michael always I really appreciate it.

  • Yeah so I can I can also time out spammers.

  • Um so that that's about it.

  • I don't have too much more to add I'll have a Q.

  • And A.

  • But if you can in the comments below after the video is finished leaving some questions or on twitter you can just add the at mark only in Japan tv or hash mark only in Japan tv and I will get to that question, What do you got in the vending machines here.

  • See it's not really any changes.

  • Do you see any changes?

  • Maybe some of you see the changes, but I don't see the changes.

  • Emerald Mountains been there forever that match a lot.

  • Cafe latte is pretty good.

  • Macha latte, you know, there's not a lot of changes going on here.

  • Alright, everybody thank you so much.

  • Why still masks outside rights and Tiffany?

  • Uh two reasons one pollen is really bad in Japan, so people have hay fever, it's really really bad in Tokyo because after World War Two they planted a bunch of cedar trees that they probably shouldn't have done for lumber to rebuild but they found that chopping down those trees was more was so expensive.

  • It it just didn't make a lot of sense.

  • It was cheaper to import it from places like Thailand.

  • So um most of the wood used today is imported from abroad because it's just too expensive to start up the industry again.

  • So that's one reason why people wear masks still and the other one is because it's polite to do that.

  • We still have a pandemic.

  • The numbers are still pretty high.

  • So even walking down the street, I noticed in places where people congregate at um it's a good question.

  • People congregated intersections here, they get quite close and so everybody just wears the mask.

  • Japan is a country where people just wear masks, It's just a different culture.

  • They wore masks before the pandemic, they're gonna wear masks after the pandemic and that is a fact and I'm on, I'm on board with it because you know it's polite and people feel comfortable and I wear mine, which doesn't do much, this is really light, but you know, masks have a purpose, it keeps it bottles in my crap, right?

  • So all my, all my stuff stays with me.

  • I don't, I don't get it on other people, but when there's nobody around and um distance, I just pull it down, masks do very little to protect you, but it protects other people from you if you were to be sick and I don't think I am, but you never know they were masks even before the pandemic.

  • She's a God, thank you.

  • Yeah, social responsibility.

  • You know that's another reason why I think Japan might not be opening.

  • I think this is why I think this is such a great question.