Monday, February 14, 2005

Temples and giant Buddha, a mini Meet Up, and cool Shibuya

Late this morning I set off from my ryokan for a little place out of the way, recommended to me by Rob - fellow travel addict! Kamakura was about 30 minutes away from the area I was staying, and so after a few train changes, I was on my way to see the big buddha "you can walk into", as Rob had said. This little town out of the city was quite cute, and yet still bustling. After deciding to ditch the scary bus experience, given that I had no idea where I was going, and noone spoke English, I jumped into a taxi. Automatic doors on the taxi, if you don`t mind!! How funny!

I found the Great Buddha sitting with his legs crossed in the middle of nowhere, and yes, you can walk inside - although I really don`t know why!! There was nothing inside! 13.35 meters tall, he was once housed in a temple, but a tsunami had washed that away. He now sits out in the elements, surrounded by the mountains.

The town before Kamakura is Kita-Kamakura, and it is dotted with beautiful temples. Here I wondered around, and finally got a glimpes of the cherry blossoms I picture when I think of Japan (pic). Most of the temples have amazing gardens surrounding them, and these in the mountain are no exception. Tokei-ji also has a cemetary within the grounds, which was facinating. I managed to spot the burial site of Japan`s first gold medalist - in "hop step jump", would you believe!?

An hour back into Tokyo itself, I meet up with a couple of BookCrossers for coffee. It was great to meet some fellow addicts, and also to have a conversation!! I feel like I have been a mute for the last couple of days, merely pointing at things as my main form of communication! Lil and Deb live in Kyoto (from New Zealand and Canada originally), and we got chatting about BookCrossing and releasing, Japan, world travel, etc. They are both teaching English here...earning good money...hmmm...

Upon darkness, I headed for the funky Shibuya, where the fashionable woman come to assemble their outfits! Amazing! The neon and the busy fast-moving pace. And the girls look incredible!

8 comments:

  1. Happy Valentines Day to ya Tash. Just a quick note before I rush off to drown my single boy depression with as many single lonely friends as I can with as much ale as I can. I've just had a corker weekend, went to a day on the green with Jarrod on saturday and drank 2 bottles of wine. Bumped into about 40 people I know (yep that's about all of them) at st kilda fest yesterday.

    Having dinner with Steve, karen and kris on wednesday. They head off in about 5-6 weeks.

    Things with Mai are.. oh, this is an open site, I'll save that story.

    Had a good chat with charles a few days ago. I'm so tempted to take all that bad advice you have given me over the years and forget trying to be a student and forget ever digging my way out of debt and head off in search of my own red leather jacket.

    I'm enjoying your stories. I think back fondly on our time in PP all those years ago. When I click on your linked photos I only get the thumbnail, not the big picture (I was never very good at the big picture).

    hope the guts haven't reverted,

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  2. Aaaah, big man... chin up mate and good luck on the gas/pull tonight...

    tashy, keep up the good work with the travels and blog entries. you'll have to have to remember though that I'll be reading it when you start slagging me off about my hospitality this weekend!!

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  3. Tash, I'm getting all the gossip and slagging from newly returned housemate-Gab about Charles hospitality!

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  4. Farlow,

    Tash knows that if she pulls the room is all hers and vice versa.... as will be the case when you come and visit... christ, i let kine use the facilities when she was there and I slept on the couch.....

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  5. Tash, whats with the photos? am I doing something wrong?
    andrea

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  6. What are you saying charles! Did Gabby pull when she was staying with you? and while we are on the topic of my housemates... no I better save that one for the burn out.

    Tash, I also can't get at your photos.

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  7. Photos - keep your knickers on kids! I will have a play again and see if I can get them to be the right size. Otherwise, if it takes too long, it will have to wait till I am in the UK. Too much suchi eating and naked public bath time here for frustrating photo posting!!

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  8. Tash, uploading photos should be a diddle at mine thanks to my free broadband (thank you kind, ignorant neighbours). Also might as well have a think about any CD's you might want to download!

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