Monday, 26 January 2015

Zushi Beach

This is where Tokyo-ites surf, and they were surfing, on their paddle boards, in the snow!
It's on the border of the big three, Tokyo, Kawasaki and Yokahama, down near Kamakura.
Beware of tsunamis.

Saturday, 24 January 2015


Last day in Ningyocho and I was feeling poorly, craving for something akin to stewed fruit. Good luck, but then m~ remembered seeing Ron the previous day, so the experience began. Fruit parfaits galore in the window, alas Ron was not able to produce them all, we compromised, the result is below.
Ron, yes that's him, started his coffee shop in the sixties and it hasn't changed since, abacus and journals prevail, nice finish to the trip for me.

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Fuji Lakes

At first I thought, oh here we go, theme park Japan, but it wasn't. The natural beauty of the area made  up for the tourists, happiness prevailed I was in the mountains.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015


One night in Shinjuku on our way to Fuji lakes, it was new, it was cool. One room consisted of the bed only which had a glass wall between it and the bathroom, so we could have a lip reading or sign language conversation and eat little dried fishies.


Ise, birthplace of Shinto, hell of a place to get to and when there, hell of a place to get around, it's huge, we didn't actually get to see the major shrine.
The white horse, servant of the gods, cleanser of evil spirits. When it's a big deal they have a real one.
This horse had a special stable and was particularly spirited.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Ash Buddha

No it's not Japan, but Sydney, in fact they call it Sydney Buddha.
You'll find it at Carriageworks open all week I believe until March, by which time it should look quite interesting. Made of the ash of incense sticks, a bit falls off regularly. Loved it.

There are bits falling off me regularly too.

Monday, 19 January 2015


Where we stayed and underneath Kiyomizu.


The ryokan we splurged out on in Higashiyama. We were not disappointed.



Kiyomizu the temple overlooking Kyoto with Higashiyama below.
Nice view.

Bread, Ham & Cheese

The last food I had before The Departure Lounge, that is one foot in Japan with JAL, was a toasted ham sandwich. I remember saying that this would be the last of any bread, ham and cheese for three weeks, meaning no wheat, cured meat or dairy. Toyoko Inn where we stayed for the first week or so serves breakfast included, a fairly basic affair with western food creeping in insidiously.
The meal pictured meets all my requirements except maybe for the noodles so, miso, rice with egg, veg and pickles. Breakfast of champions.


Sunday, 18 January 2015

Nishijin, Kyoto

Nishijin was once a famous textile centre, now all that remains are some of the old houses and the Kimono Museum. We were lucky enough to see a parade of Kimonos which started a couple of minutes after our arrival. Definitely beats getting lost, again.

Sculptor's House, Kyoto

A surprise find while taking a new route in Kyoto, a famous sculptor's house and studio, now a museum and school, all worn and weathered, with some fruit trees.

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto

You've seen the images, endless red torii, in fact they continue right to the top of the mountain and then who knows how far. We climbed quite a way up and it's amazing how fast the tourists drop away. three quarters  of the way up there is a beautiful tea house, reward. Interestingly the torii show increasing neglect the further you climb.

Kibune And Kurama

You get off at Kibune station, take a bus to Kibune, which is real cute, then climb over the mountain to Kurama. A sort of pilgrims path, we noticed nearly everybody else was doing it in the reverse direction.
Kurama station awaited as our destination and a warming bowl of noodles as our reward.
Of course there was a shrine at Kibune, shrines up and down the mountain and a huge monastery at Kurama.

To-JI Temple Markets, Kyoto

Christmas eve makes no difference to the To-Ji Temple Markets, they are held on the 24th of the month, no exceptions. Nevertheless it was incredibly crowded, not really conducive for shopping and, it is a temple after all.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Moso Bamboo, Arishiyama

At Night, Arishiyama

The kimono fabrics installation at Keifuku Station and the bamboo forest illuminated +