Friday, June 15, 2012

Kyoto and Kaori

Tuesday, May 29: Off to Kyoto

Can I just say, Japan is amazingly spectacular. Every day I thought, "nothing can top this," yet the next day, it was even better.

Mad Dash Morning:
B and I had to make a 7:35 train. We were feeling pretty good, weaving in and out of a million Asians at the Tokyo station. It didn't last long. We were at the wrong station. With 15 minutes till take off. In a crazed frenzy, we: jumped on a train, jumped off a train, ran up and down a million escalators, ran to the wrong train, ran the right way, ran up 5 dozen stairs at least, jumped onto the train. Success. We made it.

Kyoto:
10:30, we arrived at Kyoto, met our guide Kaori, and off we went. Thank goodness Kaori helped us find our hotel. About a block from the train station, she says, "there it is." She points to a building with a huge green sign in Japanese. Apparently it says, Kyoto Hotel Annex. Alright then.

Off we go to see the sites. The weather is heavenly, the sun is shining. But wait, are those clouds I see in the distance? No, they can't be. Not when we've left both sets of ponchos at the Annex along with our umbrellas. Kaori: "Don't worry, my phone says it's sunny all day." One minute later:


Yes, that's about right. Little umbrella- Big rain. Even littler umbrella as there were two people under it (Me and B). It's safe for you to guess that, it started pouring. Just like in Nikko. We were too cheap to buy more ponchos and instead got an umbrella. It was broken after 10 minutes. I suppose we got what we paid for. 

We waited out the rain in a mini shop, dashed to a strange lunch shop that used to be a public bath (creepo if you ask me), and finally were on our way. 

What we saw: 
The Golden Pavilion 

Rock Gardens Galore. I think I may start one of these. I hear smoothing out patterns in gravel is soothing to the soul. 

Legend has it: if a carp can swim up the waterfall and drink from the top, it'll turn into a prince. To Do List: Get a dozen carp for the backyard waterfall. 12 Swimming Princes, I think yes.

Finally: Nap at the hotel from 5:00-8:40 (jet lag really did us in), woke up (luckily) just in time to dash to the train station and search for M (collapsed on the group and everyone peered at us improper Americans), found M wandering the station, back to the Annex (I'm still puzzling over why the hotel was called the Annex. As far as I know, it was simply a creepy, mini, taupe/brown/burnt orange room with scary 70's, floral bed covers. We were lucky to even wake up the next morning.)



1 comment:

  1. we have never been so lucky as to make that train! We would have died without Kaori. And yes, she did say "Oh the hotel is right there!" as if we were just idiots looking at a sign and wandering back and forth across the road for no reason.
    The rain was unfortunate-and it was a matter of principle, not money, that kept me from buying a second set of poncho-though those would have been considerably more helpful than the umbrella. And I have the feeling any umbrella would have caved under that torrential downpour.
    The pancakes at the public bath were interesting.
    The Golden pavilion was truly worth its weight in gold,
    the rock gardens were interestingly soothing-and I really loved the ones from day 2 that had the wave patterns.
    I think the carp turn into dragons, but princes would be a nice dream. I'm sure we'd find the Earl capering about the backyard with them :)

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