As mentioned yesterday, I started the day in Akihabara touring the 7-storey adult store. Truth be told, it was a lot smaller than I thought it would be. As they don't allow pictures in the store, I respected the rules and didn't take any.
There were a few things that surprised me there. Apart from the curious foreigners like myself, I met a lot of other shoppers there. To no surprise, many of them were men. However, they weren't the kinds who were there for condoms. If anything, they made a beeline to the sections they wanted and I highly suspect they weren't there the first time. Some even had membership cards.
The notion I had about sex toys being cheap was completely smashed when I visited it. First, the sexy cosplay costumes cost about USD100 to USD200 each. They were high quality and better than any costume I've worn before in cosplay. And gosh, does it look beautiful! The stockings were better than those I saw in 109 Shibuya or Harajuku. They were classy, and the designs were amazing. Ignoring the R18 aspect of many costumes, the quality of the goods and design impressed me deeply.
Next, the BDSM section looked a lot less scary than I had in my mind when I wrote those books that had the BDSM aspect. Honestly, many of those restraining goods were manufactured with carefully treated synthetic leather that did not have sharp edges. Many things that I thought would be metal or plastic were actually rubber for easy removal in case something went wrong. The ropes that they sold might leave rope burns, but the material could never cause bleeding. It was affirming to know how well safety was embedded into these goods.
The last thing that I found nice to know was how you can't judge a book by its cover, and everyone abided by that. You can see very ordinary-looking people who are the complete opposite of what you'd think they were into based on first impressions shopping for specific items. I saw many salarymen there who were middle-aged with hobbies of wearing otokonoko (femboi) underwear. There were also pretty boys who didn't look like creepy otakus who shopped for anime flesh light dolls and obese men who looked like they'd be single buying vibrators for their girlfriends.
To be honest, my research on the internet about these adult toys didn't do me any justice. I wrote The Haunted Vibrator without seeing the actual goods. Hence, I didn't know many finer details. The goods had far better design and technology than they let on from the internet description. For instance, I never knew the interior of a fleshlight was manufactured differently, and they had different 'grip strength'. Also, I had no idea couple toys were a thing. It didn't matter what gender the couple was. The store had everything. Similar to a personality test, there was a huge banner with a flow chart for first-timers to figure out which vibrator they wanted to buy. I thought that was rather interesting. It's like taking the MBTI but for pleasure.
After I walked out feeling very enlightened, I walked around and found stores that sold doujinshi books. Many of those I'd read online. I also chanced upon some Vtuber goods. They had ecchi vtuber doujinshi and unseiso materials in the second-hand goods shop.
After getting lost for a bit, I found lunch.
The crabstick fried rice had a very sweet and sour sauce that was very rich. The salty soup helped me finish the meal, and it was only 560 jpy, much cheaper than most of the meals we'd been eating so far.
Oh, did I mention having amazing luck for finding things? I don't know if my brother left the hotel at all today. However, I chanced upon this luggage store that was newly opened. They were having a sale and I found my brother's luggage for a good deal. Hence I bought it for him after texting him about the size and colour. However, due to the bulky purchase, I couldn't travel light.
Despite that, I still wanted to find the rest of the special shops I couldn't find with my brother acting as a hasty tour guide. I found the animal cafes scattered all across Akihabara. There was a cat, dog, rabbit & hedgehog cafe where you didn't have to pay for an entire hour to see the animals. You could pay about 300 jpy for 10 minutes if you wanted. The owl cafe had the shutters closed, so I didn't know if they were open or closed. However, they only received reservations, so there was zero luck there.
Along the streets, while I was lost, a maid called out to me with a flyer. I found the maid cafe by accident but passed it up because I didn't think it was the kind of cafe I could do my writing at. I carried my laptop along but couldn't find any space to write in peace because Akihabara was such a happening place. The maid who called me was from one of the shops in the building that had many other less-known maid cafes. There were many maids dressed up on the cold streets, handing our flyers to tourists. I think you could visit these cafes instead of the popular ones that demand reservations. I took a peek inside. They were empty. It's not too expensive either to entire these maid cafes. Although the menu is limited, you most certainly can have lunch here because omurice is universal.
After failing to rest, I searched for Shibuya with my brother for music bars, but they were either a) too expensive, b) not open or c) fully booked out. I gave up and went back to the hotel at 9.30 pm.
There are fewer pictures today because my phone bugged out for the Shibuya trip, even though I didn't take many pictures. We still have two more nights in Tokyo, and we're already tired of going out. If anyone has any good secluded cafe where we can both work on our laptops in Tokyo, please let us know!
P.S. I forgot to mention we had dinner at Mcdonalds and I was so happy to know they had nuggets as a side instead of fries. Also, vegetable juice was an option for those who wanted to be healthy. What a considerate fast food chain!