Sunday, July 31, 2016

Shopping for art in Niseko and walking along Susukino in Sapporo after an izakaya dinner on a Friday night



Sapporo, the capital of Hokkaido, is by and large a very quiet city compared to large cities in the mainland of Japan. 

But if you are looking for some action in Sapporo on a Friday night, living a #Travelife, all you need to do is look for the arcade that starts at Susukino and ends a few blocks down at the edge of the city center.

FRIDAY NIGHT IN SUSUKINO



On a summer Friday night, the Susukino area where this arcade is located is full of noisy bars and lively restaurants, with musicians playing impromptu gigs on the sidewalks and people walking around with the requisite glasses of Sapporo beer.

Yes, we are in Sapporo, after all, so nothing else but Sapporo beer will do.

THE OLD SHOPPING ARCADES
OF JAPAN



Arcades like these used to be the fad and fashion all over Japan many years ago, and when I was studying in Tokyo a couple of lifetimes ago, there were so many of these, especially in the burbs. 



These days, these arcades with their small shops have largely given way to swanky malls and fashionable streets with indie boutiques -- so it's not so easy anymore to find an arcade still in real use and not just lined with tired old shops on the verge of closing down.

DINNER AT THE BEST IZAKAYA
 IN SAPPORO



I had a terribly big meal (and terribly delicious) last night with my Travelife Magazine team, on our company outing in Hokkaido for the weekend

We'd gone to one of the most popular Japanese-style izakaya pubs in Sapporo for a taste of the real Japan instead of my usual favourite fancy Japan.

This izakaya is very  good, notoriously hard to book, and not likely to break the bank while sending you home with a full stomach. so I resisted our guide's kind invitation to hop into a cab to the hotel and decided to walk home.


NIGHT SHOPPING IN SAPPORO

Everyone else was heading in every direction in search of things on their shopping lists as tomorrow we're at a hot springs resort in the middle of nowhere with no shops whatsoever. 

So it was last-minute shopping for all except for me, as I live in Japan part of the time, so I don't need to stock up on Muji and Japanese groceries unlike most other people.

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SHOPPING FOR ART IN NISEKO

Besides, I'd picked up an artwork of sorts at an upscale boutique in Niseko, which I intend to use for entertaining and dinner parties back home in Manila. So that's my major shopping for this trip -- if anyone is to believe me.

So instead I put on my music -- the song "Invisible" by Ashlee Simpson, would you believe -- and strolled the long way back to the hotel, on just another wonderful evening in my never-ending #Travelife.   

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