And so we left on a Gundam-high to look for.. you guessed it… the Gundam cafe which is actually really close to Yodobashi. There’s no way you’ll miss it because there is a Gundam right outside the cafe, not life-size, but big enough to catch your eye.
The cafe is rather cozy, filled with all things Gundam. The best part of our trip to the cafe – drinks named after Gundam 00 characters on the menu (I was torn, as usual, between ordering the Allelujah Haptism and the Lockon Stratos) and… we got to try strawberry shortcake with its very own edible Gundam sketch. The cafe even has a small souvenir store next to it from where you can buy…models (yes, again!), T-shirts, notebooks and a whole bunch of other Gundam paraphernalia.
We left the cafe and continued to stroll on the same street which turned out to be Chabara, where we found a long line of food carts.
When I say food carts, I mean cute little modern red and white versions of food carts selling all kinds of food. Not sure if anything would be halal, we decided to skip food sampling and instead went looking for Mandarake– an anime/manga store, building rather, filled with anime, manga, figures, collectibles and what not. Manadarake too is not far from Yodobashi and the black building is pretty easy to pick out.
We made our way to the manga floor, only to be told that there were only about 4 manga in English on the entire floor. We headed next to the figures/collectibles floor which if you’re a collector is like a mini haven.
When we finally got back to our rendezvous location (Yodobashi, under the big yellow fish), not everyone had arrived since they got caught in the long line at the tax-free counter at Yodobashi. With everyone’s shopping finally tax-free, we headed to dinner at Al Muna where we had felafel and kebabs and seekhs of chicken. Feeling full, we were surprised to learn that there was yet another dish being dispatched to our table. We didn’t even hesitate when we asked the waiter to give our plate to another table where it was more likely to be polished off. Dinner was followed, of course, by tea and off we went to the hotel.
Our exploring for the day, though, didn’t stop at the hotel. We had slept in last night and decided that despite how tired we were, we were well-rested enough to cross the street to go to Bic Camera, which was thankfully open till 10pm. Now I had assumed, and incorrectly yet again, that Bic Camera was purely an electronics store (clearly I learned nothing from my morning experience at Yodobashi). Bic Camera is like a scaled down and more organized version of Yodobashi – all 8 floors of it which meant it was easier to navigate and less overwhelming than Yodobashi had been. Of course, it also meant more models and particularly metal models (like the Metallic Earth models that I collect).
My self-control for the day had already been exhausted and I ended up treating myself to metal models of some of the monuments we had visited and some Nano paper models. I was sorely tempted to pick up some Nanoblock too but resisted the urge, especially after my crazy debit card kept giving an error at the cashier -___-.
We decided to call it a day pretty much at store closing time and headed back to the hotel to get ready for another long day – especially to get those white socks ready for the tea ceremony. ^^
Stay Tuned for Day 6 Part 1