Best laid plans

Age of the Geek Column: Sayonara.
Barring a catastrophic change of plans, by the time this column sees print yours truly will be half a world away to spend two weeks in Tokyo.
I originally thought that I would play this trip by ear, getting lost in the foreign metropolis and seeing where my adventure would take me.
After all, this is a very different trip than my annual pilgrimage to San Diego. When I'm there, I know I'm going to be at Comic-Con and everything I do is based on that fact. There's no need to find things to fill my time with.
For this trip though, I won't be going to Tokyo for any one thing in particular. Sure, I'll be dedicating a day of my trip to the Tokyo Game Show, just because it happens to be going on while I'm there, but the rest of the trip is left entirely up to me to do with as I please.
I have no obligations to fill or anywhere specific to be. So long as Google is tracking my location (thank you, privacy invading overlords), I could easily spend the entire trip taking a train to random stops just to see what's there. So who needs a plan?
Turns out, I do. I need a plan.
It started with the Robot Restaurant, a themed restaurant in Shinjuku that's more of a performance theater with food than a place for dining. You get snacks and drinks while you enjoy a laser show and dancers performing with animatronic robots. Sure, it's a tourist trap, but I'm a tourist. That's what I'm there for.
It's also a popular tourist trap, so if you want to make sure you can get in, you'll want an advanced reservation.
Well, once I knew I would have to be at a specific place at a specific time, the idea of a freewheeling Tokyo adventure kind of unraveled. If I'm attending the 2:00 show at the Robot Restaurant, then what am I doing before that? A quick look at Google Maps shows that there is a temple with a park just a block away from the restaurant. That'd be a good place to relax and kill time. Shinjuku is also famous for their ramen shops, so I may as well go early and get some lunch. There's also a samurai museum just a couple blocks away from the restaurant that might be fun to visit after the show, to say nothing of the giant Godzilla attraction.
Thus, before I knew it, the idea of visiting one tourist trap attraction turned into a carefully plotted ten-hour day-trip into Shinjuku, complete with train information and the exact walking route mapped out.
Of course the Robot Restaurant isn't the only attraction that has caught my eye in planning for this trip. As soon as I started looking at sight-seeing locations I fell down an internet rabbit hole of "Places to visit in Japan" articles and "Ten things to do in Akihabara" lists.
Since I'd already put the work in to plot out one day of my trip, it wasn't that much extra effort into plotting out the rest of them.
Thus, the great scheduling began. Of the 11 days I have to fill in Tokyo, eight of them are now largely accounted for. Some are more planned out than others, but I'm almost worried that I've planned this out to such an extent that when I get there I'll just be going through the motions.
Of course, no itinerary survives contact with reality. I'm eager to find out just how good at making plans I am, or alternatively, how good I am at adapting them when they fall apart.
Should be fun either way. Travis Fischer is a news writer for Mid-America Publishing and kinda hopes he gets lost at least a little bit.

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