I don't want you to think that I went straight to Akiba when I arrived in Tokyo. Of course I checked in to my hotel first. Then I went to Ueno Park for a couple hours. Then I made some train reservations.

THEN I went to Akiba.

I don't have it in me to be a gonzo journalist. I can only do a cheap and flashy imitation. A Studio Gonzo journalist, if you will.

Lots of lights, lots of anime advertisements for shows I've never seen. Lots of people.

Mostly men in their twenties. Few if any men of my vintage or older. Not exclusively male. Maybe 20% female. Some of the girls sticking together, some with male friends. Only a few were obviously couples.

Men predominantly wearing plaid shirts and jackets. Everyone had their phone out. Me too.

A few other westerners. I saw one guy with an anime t-shirt. He was a westerner.

Maid café waitresses on the streets. Talking in exaggerated nasal voices. Unattractive to the ears.

After walking around, decided to go into a store. Went into Gamers first, because reasons.

At first I thought it was tiny. Then realized it had many floors.

It struck me as seedy. Also, Rabi~en~Rose wasn't working there. Left disillusioned.

Walked through a couple of UFO catcher places. Found a place selling non-adult doujins that I browsed through. Recognized almost none of the series.

Was about to go back to my hotel when I saw a character I recognized. Shirley from the eponymous manga by Kaoru Mori. Apparently volume 2 has been released some years after volume 1: I had known some individual chapters had come out.

Went in, bought it. Fled back into the night.

May return to visit Mandarake.