Where Did You Find That Toy? Part Two

Client hired me to produce an internal training video and they want to shoot it in their Japan office.

Yesterday My Evil Twin went on a rant about travel and global poverty.  Many people reside inside me; luckily they all can write decent stuff…but sometimes, one of them goes waaaay off topic.  Today, back on track, one of my sane alters will actually talk about shooting the training video.

Making travel arrangements


Travel agency recommends a hotel.  Griff is very fearful of the foreignness of Japan; so he emails the manager in his Tokyo office to ask for a different hotel recommendation:

Griff: “I want to stay in a Hilton, so I can rack up my frequent traveler points.”

Shoko: “There is a Hilton about 8 miles from the office.”

Griff: “Oh, no.  I want to be as close to the location where we’ll be shooting as possible.  I can’t read the street signs. How will I ever find my way from the hotel to the shoot?”

It’s not as if there isn’t a whole crew of 3 people traveling together…

Shoko: “Well, there is an Emperor Hotel in the same building as the office.”

Griff: “Perfect.”


Griff calls me into a meeting with a guy named Rain.  Rain has traveled to Japan (do tell, what a concept!) and can help us navigate our way through the alien culture.

Rain tells us tells us we can take a taxi , train, or bus shuttle from the airport to the hotel.

  • Taxi costs about $65 for 3 passengers.  Takes about 2 hours.
  • Train costs about $19 each, total $57 for the 3 of us.  Takes about 1 ½ hours.  However, Rain reminds us, Shinjuko Station is the busiest train station in the world-they actually have “crammers,” people with long wooden bars who shove passengers in so they can be packed tightly and the doors can close.  And.  We will be arriving during the rush commute hour.  And.  We have luggage.  Cameras. Gear.
  • Bus shuttle costs $20 each; total $60.  It goes directly to the hotel; does not stop at every commute station; it has racks for luggage.

Griff decides we should take the train.  Save $3.

Let’s take the commuter train in the rush hour in the most crowded city in the world when we can’t read the language to save $1 per ticket.

Then, we have to go into another meeting with Rain to ask:

“How do we know what train to get on?”

Rain says, “www.tokyotrain.com.”


Third meeting with Rain.

Griff: “Do we have to wear a kimono?”

Uh, no.

“Shall we bring gifts?”

Rain: “No, not really.  These guys are all employees of our company; they won’t expect gifts.”

So, Griff proceeds to ignore Rain’s advice.  He buys San Francisco 49ers tee shirts ’cause he thinks the natives will be thrilled.

However, the Japan crew has 17 team members; and Griff only brings 4 tee shirts

…keeping his budget in mind…

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