Like the adage goes, it's always when you're not looking for something, does that something come appearing out of the blue. I've tried my hand at getting a ticket to the famed Studio Ghibli Museum in Tokyo last year, and was unsuccessful due to a comedy of errors. This comedy more or less continued where I now learned that the ticketing in Lawson's stores outside of Tokyo do not carry that option of purchasing the tickets (unless I'm mistaken again!) So it all depends on luck when I head back to Tokyo in a few day's time to get my hands on those limited tickets for the day that I'm free from TIFF activities.
So here I was exploring Kyoto's famed Gion district, an experience in itself to behold with what's possibly a glimpse into Japan's past
and being trigger happy with the camera, I was having a field day with shooting the antiqued looking building facades when I just happened to take this:
and walked away, continuing my photoshoot...
then I did a double take. Those words in my viewfinder (yeah, LCD screen's a battery-waster) looked extremely familiar, and I headed back. I'd admit I was behaving like one of those men in the Heineken Walk-in Fridge ads, though I was composed enough to fire away a few more shots before I had to restraint myself from bursting out...
Lo and behold! A Studio Ghibli shop tucked away in a corner! I would've missed this had I not turned back. I think it's authentic enough though, everything in the shop is a Ghibli memorabilia for sale, with soft toys galore of various characters and in sizes that suit every budget. I thought of not getting something, but the temptation is just too great not to. In the end it boiled down to money in the pocket, and what looked good. So I had to settle for...
I suppose it's time to fatten up the wallet a bit for that Museum tour, especially if there's a gift shop at the end of it. Otherwise, well, at least I managed to snag something from somewhere that I least expected to!
For those who might be interested to authenticate the shop, I've marked it out on the map below, which is basically (from the direction of the UNESCO site of the famous Kiyomizu-dera Temple) to walk down the flight of stairs marked Sannenzaka Slope and continue down the walkway. The shop should be on your left side before you hit the Ninenzaka Slope: