The famed Shinjuku Tower Hotel. I was here exactly one year ago and it seemed the appropriate place for this week’s FNM. I know this only because I was here for the Tokyo Marathon last year and it is now coming up in another week or so. Our office is in this building so it was easy and it is an amazing 360 degree view of Tokyo.
It was a very long week. Work is bordering on insane busy; I booked 56 hours this week and that was shaving a bit to be budget conscious. So, 6:00 on Friday, I walked across the lobby and headed upstairs. I ordered a Ketel One Martini with regular olives and a Cohiba Maduro #5. I intended to smoke after dinner, but the martini was so great and the view so lovely I decided to get right to it. A 3-piece jazz combo played and I sat and felt the stress of the week slipping away. After a while, I chatted a bit with an American chap who had taught himself to read Japanese but needed to practice speaking and interacting. He was here as part of a month long program to refine his language skills.
He left soon enough and I sipped my drink, enjoyed the cigar, people-watched, let my mind wander and generally enjoyed the multi-cultural atmosphere that comes with a large metropolitan city. It took two martinis to finish the cigar and get completely free of the week.
I was too tired to look for another place to eat so got the bar menu. This place is crazy expensive so I decided to go easy on the meal and ordered the burger and fries ($40). Add a couple of martinis, glass of wine with dinner and a Cuban and it was a $125 night. So it goes. Welcome to Tokyo.
After dinner, I enjoyed the 10-minute walk in the slight evening chill to Shinjuku station where I caught the JR line to Shinagawa and my hotel.
All in. A lovely night and fitting end to a difficult week at work.