Last weekend, I was in Tokyo living a Travelife and playing host to so many visitors from Manila who were in Japan for the Tokyo Marathon.
I decided to volunteer to bring all the kids to the Sanrio Puroland in the suburbs of Tokyo, while their parents prepared for the Tokyo Marathon. After all, I wasn’t doing any running anyway, so I thought I may as well run after a couple of kids.
Scroll down to see Hello Kitty through the years…
All the kids were regular visitors to Tokyo so they’ve been to all the regular kiddie haunts in this city, including Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea.
Been there, done that, seemed to be the slightly jaded attitude of all these kids who’ve been to both theme parks in Tokyo at least twice already.
And lots of them have been to Disney theme parks all over the world as well, including the ones in Hong Kong, the States and France.
Aha. I had one card up my sleeve.
“Bet you guys haven’t been to Sanrio Puroland,” I said.
I was fairly certain they hadn’t, simply because Sanrio Puroland hasn’t been marketed as heavily to foreigners until now. It’s also quite a way from Tokyo, although pretty straight down the expressway, so it’s easy driving.
There was lots of shouting around the room at the mention of Sanrio.
Most of the kids were girls of a particular age, and so Hello Kitty and the Little Twinstars were pretty central to their lives. Suddenly, the jaded looks disappeared and instead, there was excitement all around.
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Next. Guess who got the jaded look?
Me, of course.
I’d volunteered to take the kids off their parents’ hands with every good intention.
But then I realized I was going all the way to Tama, a rather nondesript area outside of Tokyo that I hadn’t been to since college, to visit a theme park of characters I hadn’t come up close and personal with in a couple of decades.
But what fun it turned out to be.
A visit to the Sanrio Puroland is highly recommended, especially in the winter, as it’s actually a completely indoor theme park. How nice to be walking and running around with a bunch of kids, and not have to worry about the cold!
I was a Hello Kitty girl, too, as a child, and it was very nice and nostalgic to see this well-loved character and her friends again.
What was especially interesting to me was a set of posters that showed Hello Kitty’s metamorphosis over the years. This is probably the most complete set of Hello Kitty images through the years.
I’m posting some of them here for the Hello Kitty fans all over the world, young and old, hopefully living their own versions of a never-endingly eventful Travelife.