EPIC organized tours of Tokyo for conference participants. On Sunday, I went on an all-day tour that illuminated Japanese culture and history through an examination of Edo-period architecture. Our tour guides were four Japanese students and they did a great job of planning the tour and showing us around. In the morning, we visited the Edo-Tokyo Open-Air Architectural Museum, a park where famous buildings from the Edo period (1603-1868) had been collected. (Group photo courtesy of Mai Yamazaki.)
We had lunch at a traditional soba resturant (noodles); the students showed us how to sit on tatami mats, explained the delicious foods offered, and demonstrated how to eat them – a fun way to learn about Japanese culture!
In the afternoon, we visited the Edo-Tokyo Museum, which displayed Edo period architecture through amazingly detailed scale models.
In the evening, the opening reception of the EPIC conference took place. I visited with old friends and colleagues, and ended up at a restaurant with an interesting “nabe” one-pot meal experience, cooked at the table on a portable stove. I went with my old friend Charline Poirier and a new acquaintance, an American designer based in Japan.