I go overseas for Magic Fests once every couple of months, but in this article I would like to talk about how I spend time in Japan and, of course, in TokyoMTG.
At Long Last, Suidobashi Has What I’ve Been Waiting For...
I visited the store for the first time in a while, and while I was walking to the store from the station, I found two new bubble tea stands on the way! I know everyone in Japan are really into bubble tea now, but honestly, I'm surprised at how many bubble tea stands are popping up. As I mentioned in my Magic Fest Taiwan article, bubble tea is a pretty big part of Taiwan's culture, and I think it's also becoming an important part of Japanese culture too. So I decided to go try both of the new bubble tea stands, being a big fan of bubble tea myself; both of them were very chewy and yummy! You don't have to wait in long lines at either of the stands, so I highly recommend you going to either of them when you visit TokyoMTG!
Visiting the Store After a Long Time
I headed straight to the window that had my precious plant in it when I got to the store. The main reason of the visit to the store this time, was to see how my plant was doing. Some of you who visited TokyoMTG might of seen some mysterious plants in the store. I normally grow vegetables at my house, but since I was on a business trip in June and July, I decided to grow vegetables at the store instead. If you can’t tell by the photos, it’s a jalapeno plant. Jalapenos are green chilis that represent Mexico, and are mainly used to make hot sauce; they're pickled sometimes too! I was growing it because my friend gave me the seeds, so I wasn't sure what to do with them honestly. Luckily, one of our lovely team members Gomez-san, is from Mexico, so I decided to ask for her recommended ways of cooking jalapenos.
The recipe is very simple:
① Cut the jalapenos in half
② Remove the seeds
③ Stuff some cheese in
④ Bake them
You might think jalapenos are spicy, but actually they’re not spicy at all! They’re similar to green pepper and go really well with cheese. I didn't know this, but the seeds are the only spicy part of the jalapeno itself. I was super embarrassed cautiously eating the cheese-stuffed jalapeno for the first time, but don’t underestimate how spicy the seeds are!! I wound making a jalapeno sauce from the seeds the next day. I only licked a little bit of sauce from my finger, and it was like my tongue suddenly caught on fire! Recently, more stores in Tokyo are selling jalapenos, so please try them when you have the chance. But remember!! DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE HOW SPICY THE SEEDS ARE!!!
Introducing a Friend to Magic!?
Usually I don't play Magic, but I really love the chill atmosphere of TokyoMTG, so I sometimes bring my friends to the store. In September, I brought one of my female friends with me to the store; she’s a real girly girl. Fashion and beauty are a little different from playing a card game with wizards and dragons on them. Regardless though she was fascinated by the art of Magic. And actually got her interested in giving it a try. She was curious in how to actually play, so we decided to join one of the teaching caravans at the shop. We enjoyed the game and she even ended up beating me! I was very glad that I was able to introduce her to TokyoMTG, and of course, to Magic: The Gathering. On our way home, she said she wanted to “give the 4 player format, ‘Commander’ a try next time.” There aren’t a lot of female Magic players out there, but we could definitely help introduce more players like her.
Many Sightseeing Spots in Tachikawa
We opened up having a booth at the Japanese Nationals event that took place on September 7th to the 8th. I made fruit pound cake for everyone at the booth, and headed to Tachikawa. Nationals was held near Tachihi, which is a minute walk from the station. “Tachihi” （立飛）is the name of the area itself, and I found a sightseeing spot that was called “Tachihi Beach”; it sounds like “Tahiti Beach”, which is quite funny. I saw the facility from the monorail, and saw that you can have a barbeque and play beach volleyball there. Depending on the season, there are also Tahiti dance performances for you to enjoy; you might feel like you’re actually in Tahiti if you go there!
There’s also a place called LaLaport near Tachihi station; it’s a huge mall that has tons of stores in it, and IKEA is even close by! I went there to get some lunch, but it was loaded with families and couples. I’d be broke if I was living near this mall because I seriously love shopping. Showa Memorial Park is also a great place to visit in Tachikawa, and it’s one of the few national parks in Japan; the park is 40 times bigger than Tokyo Dome! I used to have picnics and play disc golf at Showa Memorial Park when I was a University student. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to visit, but I will definitely go back to see the autumn leaves in November. It’s a great place to go when you feel tired from the noisy and crowded city. So that was my update on TokyoMTG and me! If you see me at any MagicFests or at the store, don’t be shy, say hi! If you tell me that you’re reading my articles, I’m sure we’ll be fast friends! lol