October 6th-October 23rd
So this is post one, from me! I decided to write about my favourite day in Japan. The memories from Korea are too close to my heart. The times I loved the best are the small and seemingly mundane moments. They are times like coming home and watching Ru Paul’s Drag Race while feasting on sour candy and chocolate or racing onto a subway train to beat those darn ajimmas and ajusshis to a seat (which we did by the way and it felt SO GOOD!). I am blessed to have had the opportunity to share with them the beautiful life I’ve made for myself. Without further ado, the most memorable day of Japan!
Japan Day Four:
Fushimi Inari Shrine -> Kinkakuji Temple -> Nishijin Textile Center -> Kiyomizu Temple -> Gion District
Our fourth day in Japan was by far the busiest and most trying for us as a Nunes trio. We started with the incredible Fushimi Inari Shrine which was conveniently located near our airbnb. When we arrived, we were immediately in awe of the large vermilion coloured torii in front of the temple structures. Like the silly and under-prepared tourists we were, we thought that was it! We noticed a map and saw that the Fushimi Inari Shrine was actually quite large and wound its way gracefully up and down Inari mountain. Feeling adventurous, we decided that we might as well climb it and see what it was all about despite our poor clothing choice of jeans. Wandering under old and freshly painted torii draped with spiders alarmingly big, through a tranquil and mysterious forest was a treat for the senses. There was a lot of complaining (mostly from my mother and I) but our excellent cheerleader Katherine kept our spirits up the whole way. Approximately two hours later, we finished the loop and returned to the base of the mountain sweaty, and foolish.
The Kinkakuji Temple was our first zen garden. It was intriguing and confronted our understanding of what makes a garden. It also struck me how much intention can be put into a garden and how it can manifest our values and ideas about the world. Basically, it was cool.
As is the way of travelling, we changed our plans and headed to the Nishijin Textile Center next so that mama could look for a yukata (a less formal kimono). Although we left sans a yukata, we did find some other treasures to bring home and the nice textile man made Katherine and I a bracelet from leftover thread! He tried to make one for each of us but struggled with our Western-sized wrists. In the end we laughed a lot as he told us apologetically that we’d have to share. Luckily, we are used to that! As is the way of travelling, the detour to the Nishijin Textile Center meant that we missed out on Nijo Castle. The outer gate looked cool though! 😛
By the time we arrived at the Kiyomizu Temple it was already dark. That didn’t stop us from making the most of this ancient wonder- there is not a single nail used in the entire structure! Admittedly, we rushed this part and didn’t get to appreciate as much as we wanted… that’s travel!
Last was our short visit to the Gion District. We were a little sour by this point having missed two major spots but within 5 minutes of being there we actually spotted a Geisha! She happened to be getting into a cab and leaving the area but it was still a lucky sighting! Other than that moment, I wasn’t that impressed with this area however I was happy we saw it.
This day was fun, busy, difficult, and amazing all wrapped up into one. You can look forward more memories in the next post written by my lovely sister!