Japan July '06 Tour -- July 24-25 (Monday & Tuesday)
2/24/2017 5:48:56 AM - July 24, 2006 (Monday) -- My one day off, and it was raining like mad. Sasha immediately disappeared from morning with Henry to do his soba and coffee routine, then onto Akihabara (Tokyo's electric and gadgets city), and I was left to entertain Nikita. I'd hoped for better weather to take him to the Power Rangers show at the Tokyo Dome, which also has a recreation park with rides and stuff, but as it was an outdoor event and with the rain it was out of the question, so instead decided to take him to the "Children's Castle" in Aoyama. In all my years living in Tokyo, I'd always passed by the modern sculpture outside the building on Aoyama Dori in front of a huge complex and knew it was related to children, but never had reason to go in until that day. It turned out to be a fantastic building with floors (6 in all) of various activities for young ones: a pool, gym, freestyle giant jungle gym, arts and crafts, museum display that changes monthly, musical instruments and a stage that housed a band which the kids can perform together with, etc. I had to drag Nikita out at closing time.

We went to a nearby French pastry shop (I'd noticed it on our way to the Children's Castle) to pick up some desserts to bring to my friend and stylist, Natsuko Kawabe's house for dinner. I can't remember the name of the shop, but it's on Aoyama Dori closeby, was incredibly chic in design (and price!), and everything looked amazing -- I chose 4 little creations in a glass cup, things like lychee jelly with mascarpone cream, carmel mousse and praline cookie (that's just one!). Great to see Natsuko-san and her daughter, Rei-chan, as always, and we hung for a couple of hours over do-it-yourself handroll sushi, white wine and the desserts (they were very good but overwhelming, trying a little too hard to justify their high price tags). We were back at the hotel by 9:00 and immediately crashed.

July 25, 2006 (Tuesday) -- Left at 9:30 a.m. for a shoot with Grazia magazine. I was very excited to do this as it had been a while since I'd done a picture spread (there were 4 cuts) for a magazine, and it was with Cartier and their new line of watches, La Dona de Cartier! Sasha was taking care of Nikita that day, and I'd arranged for Yuki to, in turn, babysit Sasha (!) and take them to the Power Ranger's show as it was finally a nice day.

The shoot was at the Cotton Club in Marunouchi, and the staff turned out to be fantastic, all very nice and very professional. Their concept was that I was to channel the Mexican actress Maria Felix, who had asked Cartier to design the line of jeweled alligators many decades back. The stylist, Nakako Ikeda, had chosen cool and classic clothing to complement the jewelry and situation, and I must say they all looked really great on. The make-up artist was also named Michiru (same kanji and katagana combination as my middle name, Michiru, which is highly unusual), which was pretty cool. There were 4 cuts in all, and it was awesome to wear such expensive pieces, one watch which was worth something like $30,000, major bling! I've never really been that interested in high end jewelry, but chalk it up to age, I was actually into it and even thought they looked good on. I'm excited to see the cuts -- the magazine is due to be out in the stands in September for their October issue. We finished as promised at 4:00 p.m. (leave it to Japanese scheduling to be on time, almost to the minute).

Great day, and it turned out that Sasha and Nikita had a great time as well, probably Sasha more than Nikita! Henry, who'd gone along, had dared Sasha to ride a scary roller coaster, telling him, "The regrets in life is not in what we did, but what we didn't do." He ended up loving it so much that he went on it a second time, and to this day talks about it to everyone!
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Nexus CD Participant
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