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Hachiko: The Most Loyal Dog of Shibuya
In a small arboreal area outside the Shibuya train station, you can find a statue to a small dog that epitomizes loyalty and undying love. Little Hachiko used to walk with his master, a Tokyo University professor, to Shibuya station everyday as he went off to work and greeted him every evening as he exited the train station on the way home. Sadly, one day in 1925, his master didn't get off the train -- insteasd, he died at work, never to return. Hachiko had many homes after that, but would often escape to return to Shibuya station and wait for his master at the precise time that the professor would have arrived. According to the plaque by the statue, he died on the exact spot that he last saw the professor, in 1935.
As a dog owner myself, I had to find the shrine when I visited Shibuya. I may even check out the little ceremony that I heard is held here every year in early April.
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This store is one of Tokyo`s most idiosyncratic and little-known attractions. It is a boutique on hip, happening Cat Street in Shibuya , which confusingly goes by a surfeit of names : Rock and Roll Department, Too Young to die, Pink Dragon...However, the store itself is easily distinguishable by the giant egg over the doorway (!)
Inside, the store sells retro-inspired rockabilly clothes, hats, accessories...but the real surprise is in the small adjoining room where the "dragon museum" is located. For reasons known only to the store`s owners, they have contructed a bogus plaster-of-paris "dragon skeleton" as their mascot. The goodsized "dragon" remains are presented in a completely deadpan manner, as a genuine specimen.
To support this, the walls are lined with (obvioulsy faked) photgraphs and diary entires from the "paleontological dig" which uneatrhed the "dragon" and a tooth and egg are also on display. The whole thing is just one small room, but it is delightfully bizarre and certainly worth a stop if you`re heading down Cat Street - in any case, a fun hang out on weekends with Shibuya`s fashion-obsessed youth.
If you're into architecture, check out the ecletic buildings of Shibuya. The one shown below is a good example. There is no limit to creativity in Tokyo !!!
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