Let's take a day trip to Japan! We'll be walking around the city, visiting some Japanese stores, and speaking only in Nihongo of course. So be ready for a little exercise, fun, laughter, and shopping! I am updating the plan as follows below. This will save us some walking outside in the cold and we can enjoy the shops more. We will visit 4 places:
The first stop will be Dainobu, a well stocked grocery store at 129 East 47th Street, that is about 10 minutes from Grand Central. This is one good place to go if you are looking for food, drink, and daily items. Time to pick up curry mix, noodles, rice, sweets, beer, etc... Just remember you're going to be carrying it around with you for a while. See: http://www.dainobu.us/.
Stop #2 is BOOK OFF at 49 West 45th Street. See http://www.bookoffusa.com/. This used book store is popular in Japan. Here you can buy and sell used books, manga, dvd's, cd's, etc.
Next, we'll walk over to MUJI! We'll visit the one at Times Square, 620 8th Ave. Anyone who has lived in Japan must have visited 無印良品, a store that sells all kinds of goods without markings, usually in simple colors like brown, white, black. If you haven't had the chance yet to visit one of these stores, you really need to come and see this! See: http://www.muji.us/.
And finally, walking back toward Grand Central, the last stop will be Kinokuniya, the famous bookstore at[masked]th Avenue, and Cafe Zaiya (which now has a branch inside the bookstore). This will be your chance to stock up on any Japanese language or textbooks and other supplies, and see what all else is coming out new from Japan. Finally, those who wish can join me for a casual bite to eat at Zaiya, or if it is too crowded in the cafe we can take the food across to Bryant Park (if it is warm enough!). I couldn't find a website for just the NY Kinokuniya, but here is one for Zaiya: http://zaiyany.com/menu_list.php?cid=338. Here is ageneral Kinokuniya website too: http://www.kinokuniya.com/.
Temperatures below 30 degrees or 50% or higher chance of rain or snow according to weather.com postpones the event and it will be rescheduled. I will send participants my cell number a few days before and describe what I will be wearing so that we don't miss each other at Grand Central! Hope to see you there!