More Japan Pictures
View from the train into the "Japanese Alps" going to the spring festival at Takayama. It was a gray rainy day and the misty mountains were beautiful.
The only things gloomier than the sky were the faces of James and siblings. Here James contemplates mutiny in the foreground while a colorful gilded float sits out of the rain in the background. The float crew treated the crowd to a brief puppet show to compensate for the lack of parade activity.
Night view of Nagoya from the train station on the way home from Takayama. Catherine was wondering if Ed would make it back to Kyoto. Sophie and Valerie were looking for Koala Bear Cookies and Alex liked the color changing flower in the square (pink at the time of picture). James was silent.
Shijo Street in Kyoto. Don't let all that talk of serene peacefulness fool you, it can be really crazy in warm touristy weather. Doesn't hold a candle to Delhi though.
Old meets new - This was neither the first nor the last monk we saw chatting on his cell phone. What was actually funnier was the one with the large Gucci shopping bag.
Mari celebrated her 12th birthday while she was with us. Here are three young ladies going out on the town on the eve of her birthday (with the rest us of course).
We were lucky enough to meet with a Maiko, an apprentice Geisha, who showed us a formal Japanese dance of the seasons. Ichikazu is seventeen and is quite an accomplished young lady. Alex was not as impressed as the rest of us and refused to have his picture taken with the group.
Above are Valerie and Sophie showing off their new kimonos
At a local festival we chanced upon an almost all woman troupe of Taiko drummers. This would be an excellent instrument to take up if you want to relieve your aggressions.
We've never seen middle-aged women smile so much when performing!
An interesting side note was that the festival was held to promote consumption of poultry with people lining up for free fried chicken and six packs of eggs. This is a consequence of the avian flu scare and also explains the lack of chicken on most Kyoto restaurant menus.
Calligraphy panels made by Valerie, Alex and Sophie (Mari made one also but it didn't get into the photo). They read phonetically "Wa-le-di" (left) "A-le-ku-su" (center) and "So - hi-a" (right.
This is a view of a Japanese room at our hotel. We had one Western and one Japanese room for the second part of our stay. The Japanese room was very popular especially with Valerie.
One of the reasons the Japanese room was so popular was the adjacent garden with flowers, pond and waterfall.
In the time that we were here the cherry trees and maples have leafed and the azaleas have begun to bloom. These are views from our room in the main building taken two weeks apart.
During our stay in Kyoto we watched the mini-series Shogun on DVD. The kids made fun of the main character, Blackthorne, who lands in feudal Japan and spends most of his time asking questions like "What about my ship?" and "What about my crew?" They also break into fits of laughter when Ed uses Japanese phrases like "domo" (thanks) since they think he sounds like Blackthorne.