日本での一年間

March 2, 2011

Various Osaka Pictures

Filed under: Domestic, Kansai, Trips — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — myyearinjapan @ 5:37 am

Here are a couple more pictures from Osaka, most are from shopping over the New Years holiday, so it’s basically a continuation of my previous post.

dogs

I saw a lot of young girls rocking the pair look (ペアルック pe-ah, ru-ku. That's Japanese-made English for wearing matching outfits). But I also saw these matching dogs sitting together in a bike basket.

loli

More matchy- matchy clothes. These are Lolita style dresses for sale at a costume store. The clothes at this store were actually pretty cheap but also pretty poor in quality.

tankini

Frosted Flakes tankini? Sounds Grrrrrrrreat! If you look closely you can see a Pez bikini in the background.

February 24, 2011

New Years Eve at Kyoto’s Golden Pavilion

Filed under: Domestic, Kansai, Trips — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , — myyearinjapan @ 3:42 am

After visiting the Silver Pavilion on snowy New Year’s Eve, we headed across town to the Golden Pavilion, Kinkakuji (金閣寺).

The Golden Pavilion lives up to its name and is actually golden, unlike the silver pavilion. But, the Golden Pavilion is not an original. The first time I visited the pavilion, I marveled at the spectacular temple covered in gold leaf. Then I read the book Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima, which is a fictional retelling of true events. In 1950, a monk burned down the  Golden Pavilion. The current temple is a reconstruction dating from 1955. It’s still a great place to visit, but I was rather disappointed to find out it wasn’t original. I felt like I’d been lied to.

Golden Pavilion

The Golden Pavilion seen from across the reflective pond. It wasn't very reflective with all the snow.

crowd

There so many people there that we could barely move. Here you can see everyone trying to get the same picture. Maybe we should just have one person take a picture and then share it with everyone.

February 23, 2011

New Years Eve at Kyoto’s Silver Pavilion

At New Years, it is tradition to go to a shrine to pray for the new year. Many people flood into shrines at midnight and for the next few days, major shrines are packed with people.

So, while staying in Osaka around New Years, my friends and I decided to go to Kyoto for a day. It’s only about half an hour train ride away from Osaka. very close. We figured if we went the day before the new year, we would beat the crowds. We were also planning to visit temples, not shrines. (Temples are Buddhist. Shrines are Shinto. )

But we failed in our attempt to beat the crowds. Everywhere we went was packed with people. Even though it wasn’t the traditional time or place to visit, it was still a time when most people had vacation from work and there were tons of people taking the opportunity to travel. Also, unlike Osaka, which had relatively warm weather, Kyoto was cold and snowy. We got caught in a snowstorm there. In this post, I have pictures from the first temple we visited, ginkakuji, the silver pavilion (銀閣寺). I visited this temple before a couple years ago in the springtime. You can see those pictures here.

crowds

Crowds on the walk to the silver pavilion

reflection

Reflection of the pavilion and crowds in a window.

garden

Usually you can walk through many paths that go through the beautiful garden, but most of the paths were closed because of the snow.

silver pavilion

The silver pavilion with a blanket of snow.Why is it called the silver pavilion? It is said that they originally had plans to cover the exterior in silver leaf. (Emulating the Golden Pavilion, which is covered in gold leaf. ) But although the never did, the name stuck.

bamboo

Bamboo covered in snow.

snow rabbit

My friend made a snow bunny! And then she found some berries for the creepy red eyes. Pretty well done, right? As soon as she put it down, tourists were stopping to take pictures of it.

Blog at WordPress.com.