Odaiba

We are doing our best to explore as much of Tokyo as possible on this trip. With tons of walking and lots of train rides, I think we are doing pretty good. Sure, we won’t see everything, but we are definitely trying. Our next adventure took us to Odaiba.

Hold up.

Our first adventure was waking up at 8:19am to a 5.0 Magnitude earthquake. Laying in bed, in a hotel, in a foreign country as the room trembled back and forth was an uneasy feeling. I was happy that it was a minor one. It took a few minutes after the rumblings but we calmed down and we just went on with our day.

On our way to the train station, we saw an incredible clock. Just like a tourist- we took a bunch of photos. When we arrived in Odaiba- we immediately began taking tons of more photos. There is a Statue of Liberty and the iconic Fuji TV building as soon as you step out of the train station. We then walked towards the outer edge of Odaiba in hopes of walking the parks, but it was all under construction with signs of the 2020 Olympics. So we wandered back towards finding the Full Size Unicorn Gundam!

Hold up!

But we weren’t going to make it there right away. We got distracted by a lost puppy. She was cowering in between the sidewalk and the fence over a major roadway. Clearly terrified. So I carefully got her out and my wife and I discussed what we should do. We began to head towards the Hilton hotel when we noticed some police just up the road.

Turns out they were looking for the dog for about twenty minutes. I was amazed that something like this is handled by the police, and the fact that they were actively looking for the dog. We waited about five minutes with the officer while another one walked his bike and the dogs owner to us. This is not something we see the police do in Canada. The owner was relieved and thanked us profusely before we went on our way.

Now we made it to the large Gundam. That thing is impressive! Even my wife thought it was pretty cool so she gave me the okay to buy a few limited edition Gundam models from the gift shop. We headed into Diver City and did some more souvenir shopping.

Hold up again!

We found Café de Miki with Hello Kitty and clearly had to stop for a lunch. My wife and daughter love Hello Kitty, so this was a no-brainer. We got to keep a souvenir mug and marmalade as well. After lunch, we went downstairs to the Hello Kitty store and bought some more stuff.

We left Diver City and made our way to Pallete Town and Mega Web. We stopped in at the Toyota showcase and saw some amazing concept cars that run on hydrogen and the kids tried out a VR sports car. This was on our way to the 115 meter tall Daikanransha Ferris Wheel. On the Ferris wheel we saw some amazing views of the city and bay. Then my wife remembered we had experienced an earthquake earlier in the day and was looking forward to the ride being over.

After the ride, we wandered through another mall called Venus Fort with some unique indoor decor. We made a quick stop at an arcade to play some more of the Drum Game, four player Pac-Man and air hockey. Of course we had to stop at a Studio Ghibli store and spend another small fortune on goodies.

Finally we escaped the malls and crammed onto a train to head back to our hotel and unload our goodies. This was our day of shopping which was originally planned for Monday. So now we have a free day opened up on our itinerary.

Hmmm… looks like family has voted for another day to be spent at DisneySea.

April 15th, 2016

Twelve years ago today our second child was born.  She has become an amazing little person over the years.  Since it’s her birthday, I’m going to share some information about her (proud parent moments to be precise) about who she is today.

Darwin Petra Havelka:

  • Nicknames include “Dar-B-Cute” and “Darweena”
  • Middle child/ younger sister/ older sister.

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  • She loves Hello Kitty ever since getting a pair of HK shoes at age 2.
  • Kawaii is also a favorite of hers & she is starting to draw in that style more often.

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  • Cheer leading is her passion.  She loves being a part of a squad, and is always pushing herself to become a better & stronger cheerleader.
  • When she finds something that she likes- she obsesses about it.  Over the past few years -aside from Hello Kitty- she has fallen in love with Jem & The Holograms (The 80’s cartoon), Zero (the ghost dog from The Nightmare Before Christmas), Toadette (From the Mariokart/ Mario Party games), Totoro, and Sailor Moon… To name a few.

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  • She is constantly dressing in cosplay and acting out the parts at Comicons.
  • She is a straight “A” student.  She is a perfectionist & has been known to beat herself up if she loses even one mark on an exam or project.
  • Her kindness and generosity has earned her many friends that love being around her.
  • She is a great listener and is often helping people out to make them better at what they are trying to accomplish.
  • She is very inquisitive about how the world runs, often asking questions beyond her age range (sometimes uncomfortable for a parent to answer).

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  •  She loves her first name, and I could never picture her with a different name.

Darwin has been growing up into a lovely little lady.  She seems to have taken the best qualities of both her mother and I, thus creating a personality that draws positivity into the world around her.  She also knows how to lay on the guilt and has figured out the soft spot in my heart.  I love the little monkey (Monkey happens to be her Chinese Zodiac as well) & the world is a better place having her in it.

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Happy Birthday Darwin!