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05 February 2004 @ 06:50 pm
Japan: Kyoto day 1 and 2  


200401210845

Two nights ago my watch stopped because I didn't know how far to wind
it. I seem to have done better now. (I can see the spring, now that
I'm aware it needed more winding than I gave it and am looking.)

Last night, after we got to the B&B, and I had recovered from the
motion sickness from the train we went out for yakitori. It was very
good (as has all the food on this trip been), especially the sirloin.
I tried sparrow, but really found it tough, crewing and unpleasant.
I'm not one for chewing bones and eating little skulls. The whole
sparrow was there, except the feathers and feet and I guess the beak.
I wish it had been more to my liking since I'd pushed for it to be
ordered.

We wandered around the... breakfast time, more later.

200401210930

Wow, that was a phenomenal breakfast. Yummy chocolate hazelnut buns,
scrambled eggs, sausage (that was more like hot dogs, but I'm not
complaining) an a good croissant. Western, but had a Japanese lean.
This is really a nice place, but I can't get over it being someone's
home. I keep wanting to help clean up.

Anyway, last night we wandered around the neighborhood and walked
beside a canal which we think might be the path of philosophy. We
headed back and checked out the local arcade, which has DDR for 100
yen, with free verses/double. Since it's close by and cheap enough I
might get some full sets in.

We then came back to the cafe run by the same people who run the B&B
and I had some coffee and some yummy banana cake.

I slept well last night, but I'm getting sicker. I hope I can last
until the hot spring, where I can just sit around without missing
anything.

200401220943

Yesterday we started at a this huge flea market. Food stands, shops
and people everywhere. I got myself some good souvenirs including a
dark blue kimono for 200 yen. Why, do you ask, was it that
inexpensive? The inside is bright read and yellow. (post note: and it
smells funny) I still love it. I got a sash to go with it, a refined
black and a few others nicknacks. The market was amazing. Behind it
where I waited with Same for Lynda, Mike and Garry to do a second
pass, there was a huge coi pond with 2' coi in it. Lots of 2' coi. We
then wandered by some HUGE budist temples, one of which was under
reconstruction. We were allowed to enter one, but people were
praying, so I didn't feel free to take a close look at the many things
at the front of the temple.

We made our way back to the shipping district and wandered around a
few department stores. I wanted to visit a toy store to find
something that would talk to me in Japanese. The Japanese leap pad
was tempting, but 7900yen, not affordable. Most of the interesting
talking stuff was too costly. They had an Aibo on display, but not
running. I did why a mini Shougi game and a little dancing lego man
in a duck suit (kawaii!!) (he wiggles his toush rhythmically) and the
hamster/rat from Spirited away, because he was only 600 yen.

Between the temples and shopping (or maybe even between the temples)
we had fast food udon and beef bowls. Good good stuff. Order by
vending machine.

The Japanese have vending machine parking lots that has this bar that
sicks up a food or two out of the ground which prevents you from
driving away until after you've paid. I'll hate to get into one of
those that broke and stayed up so you couldn't get out again.
We then looked for a replacement coat for the one that Mike lost, then
went to an hourly arcade. There I played or saw: the white water
rafting game, the hang gliding game, the punch the targets game, the
shoot the can game (with real can, but light guns), "typing of the
dead". the dog walking game (not very much fun), the fried egg
dumpling making game, virtual on (oh my gosh, why have I NEVER played
this game before?! Woo!), Sega's DJ game (two turn tables and a
slider to mix between them, the tambourine version of samba de amigo
and lots of stuff that I'd seen before. They also had this darling bemani logo on their floor directory near the elevator.

Before the arcade we went to basking Robins to see what strange
flavors they might have. I got "Poppin' shower" which was mint ice
cream with pop rocks in it. Yummy!

On the way home, getting on the bus, I saw the real life version of
the anime grandmother. She was less than 4ft and still shrinking as
far as I could tell, but had a strong spirit.

We came back, met for dinner and I tried Sukiyaki. Nothing special,
so I don't understand the DDR complement. ("You're sukiyaki!")

We came back and I tried on the kimono. I will have to learn how to
tie the sash with the power of the internet when I get back.

I want to comment that I take back my earlier comparison of Kyoto to
Boston. It's more like Kyoto is the 50s. I don't know what it is but
it makes me feel like I've stepped into one of those bowling alleys
that never updated anything they didn't' have to. The people's dress
is even still has that feel of not quite modern. This is above and
beyond the few old ladies who still were their kimonos.



EDIT: some pictures just reminded me that I had a candy covered straberry (hard cherry candy.) much better than a candied apple.