"All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware." Martin Buber
At the end of June I'm off again, for three weeks at a university in South Korea and a visit to Kyoto, Japan, then in August we will be in Guatemala looking at one of the world's greatest challenges: how to grow a lot of food sustainably on small farms. Come along!
Saturday, July 27, 2013
Japan #3: Kyoto by Bike. At the Heian Temple at Sundown
hundreds of Buddhist and Shinto shrines and they are among the great treasures
of the world.But they are spread out
from hell to breakfast and while I walked and used the bus and subway system to
visit a few of them in my first two days there, it is very hot in Kyoto and I became a
bit frustrated and “templed out,” as one travel writer put it.
So I rented
a bike from the hostel, all day and well into the night for $5.A few blocks away I got on the greenbelt
along the river and took off through the riverside neighborhoods, into a market
and, at day’s end, happened upon the glorious Heian Temple.
Several shallow canals run through the city...
A children's slide, Japanese park style...
A street in Gion, the long time entertainment zone and geisha enclave in times past.
you pictures of the fish and vegetables which are sold from the 126 shops in
the covered market.These were mostly
foods processed in some way, the freshest vegetables being in an unheralded
spot nearby.I did find that you can buy
candy in the form of rocks or legos.
And others that look like a button and beads kit...
I ran into martial
arts contestants ….
remarkable number of women in traditional attire…
through the beautiful trees in the Imperial Palace Park.
neighborhood temple I started seeing objects in this beautiful orange.
These are prayer requests, I think, on wooden cards and strips of paper.
Then I came
upon this same color at the modern art museum.
Finally I found out where the color apparently
comes from.As the sun was going down I
came upon the Heian Shrine.
buildings of the shrine were only built in l885, to commemorate the 1,100
anniversary of Kyoto becoming Japan’s capital.The buildings are smaller replicas of the first imperial palace
completed in 794.Most of the temples
in Japan and Korea have burned or been destroyed once or more and been rebuilt, so this is not unusual.
The entry gate...
the entry gate seen with the sunken garden of a university library.
Attendants wear the shrine colors.
I do not
know the history or meaning of the color orange but it is unusually warm and
I turned in
for the night satisfied with having salvaged a good feeling about Kyoto thanks
to a bicycle (and despite blowing a tire and having to limp home). Orange bridge, my red bicycle.