Friday, September 19, 2008

Last Day in Kyoto

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On September 10, I went to Heian Shirine. It was red and very beautiful! I was taken a picture by other tourists. They are university students, too. And one of them is belonging to photo club. So, I could get a nice picture by chance! 

After that, I went to Kyoto University. Kyoto University is very old and has long history. It is famous for researching Human Genome nowadays. The campus of Kyoto University was very large! Of course, it doesn’t match University of Maryland. And many students were in the university even during summer vacation. And they studied in the library! So, I was surprised and thought that I have to study, too!

Then, I went back to Kyoto station and bought many souvenirs. Kyoto was really good place. And I thought I want to go to Kyoto again!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Second day in Kyoto

First, I went to Kiyomizu-dera temple. This is very popular place in Kyoto. So, I saw many tourists from foreign countries. Of course, there are a lot of Japanese people, too. Kiyomizu is on the very high place. So, I walked a steep uphill. It was really hard! But, the view from Kiyomizu was wonderful!! In Japan, there is an idiomatic phrase. It's "Jump out of Kiyomizu". This is a metaphor and means "take the plunge and decide the important things". As this phrase says, I thought that if I can jump out of Kiyomizu, I can do everything. Also, I had a spiritual experience in Kiyomizu. I experienced the inside of the mother's womb of Bodhisattva. Of course, I didn't it actually. I entered very dark room which is pretended the mother's womb of Bodhisattva. I think you were surprised to hear this story and thought "Sae is crazy!". But I'm OK!! :-) This experience was very fearful for me. I couldn't see everything around me. I felt the most horrible in my life. I thought I nearly go insane in the room. But I felt as if I was born again when I found the gleam. If you have a chance, you should experience this.

Then, I went to Jishu Shrine. The god of marriage is enshrined in this shrine. So, there were many girls and couples here. And I bought a lucky charm for matchmaking.

After that, I went to Gion. Gion is one of the main place in Kyoto. And there are the Japanese dancing girls and the geisha. Unfortunately, I couldn't see them today. :-( But I saw the women wearing kimono(Japanese clothes). They were very beautiful! Then, I went to Kennin-ji temple. Kennin-ji temple is a Zen(Buddhism) temple. There are many wonderful gardens. Everyone were relaxing there.(Some of tourists slept in the room of this temple! But it wasn't banned, so I slept there, too!) And there is the painting on the ceiling of two dragons. It was very powerful painting!!

I could have the mysterious experience on second day in Kyoto. And I'm interested in the Japanese history and Buddhism now.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Trip to Kyoto! (The 1st day)

Hello! I haven't seen you for a long time. In fact, I went to Kyoto prefecture with my friend on Sep.8,9,10. kyoto was the formerly capital of Japan. So, it's very old but beautiful town.

First, I went to Kinkaku(Golden Pavilion). Kinkaku is a popular name for one of the main building of this temple, which is properly called Rokuon-ji Temple. I've seen it when I was a child. But I was moved by its magnificence again.

Then, I went to Ginkaku; formally it is called Higashiyama Jisho-ji Temple. "Gin" means silver, but Ginkaku is not Silver Pavilion and it is a wooden temple. Ginkaku is the place where Higashiyama culture formed, and is the start of modern life style of the Japanese. So, Ginkaku is very historic building. But, unfortunately, I couldn't see Ginkaku, because it is restored now. Although I've seen it before, my friend has never seen it. So, she was disappointed. :-( But, there is a nice garden near by Ginkaku. And the garden matches harmoniously with Ginkaku and Togu-do(Buddhist Hall), and catches people's heart. And I relaxed there.

After that, I drank powdered green tea. It's one of the famous food of Kyoto. It tastes bitter a little, but I like it! In Kyoto, the sweets containing powdered green tea are very popular. Of course, I ate them.

Then, I went to Yasaka Shrine. I prayed to God and wrote my wish on the Ema(a votive picture tablet) there.

I was excited the 1st day in Kyoto, but I was tired at the same time. Because I walked under the burning sun all day! Kyoto was very hot!! So, I thought that I should have taken a hat and sunglasses.