Monday, February 19, 2018


That's a mouthful, but these are three places we experienced this one day.  I woke at 3AM., but  waited until 6 to get up.  We heard last night that a cold front is on its way.  Decided to go out walking with my camera (and no coat!) before breakfast.

We are across Lake Kawaguchi from Mount Fuji, and I wanted to get some photos as the sun rose.  There is ice on the lake this morning!!

I wandered down the road to a walking path and spotted two cats doing their morning stretches.

Came upon a shrine that was way up some stone steps and offered a nice view of Fuji-san.

Carefully went up and was rewarded with nice images of  the Mount and some fishermen.
Carefully climbed back down.  Came across a jolly fellow, then on to breakfast. 
Our breakfasts were buffet stye, with wonderful choices - salads, fish, spaghetti, seaweed, all sorts of interesting options.
 Onward we went on a bus to a fantastic doll museum.  Our bus driver and our guide:

  At the doll museum, we saw amazing work by artist Yuki Atae.  Photos not allowed, but here is an outdoor sculpture based on one of his dolls, a poster, and a doll that was approved for photography, but hard to capture, as it was in a glass case.

I fell in love with the expressions, was flabbergasted by the tiny fingers, the shoes and clothing.  I bought a book.  Sadly, it is in Japanese, but the images of his dolls are wonderful.

Then our group boarded a train to Nagoya, where Toyota has it's headquarters.  We had to have lunch on the train.  Some purchased Bento box lunches, which were excellent and beautifully presented.
                                                                Back in the big city!

A bus ride took us to the village of Arimatsu, famous for its shibori production. A short walk to our destination provided us with fascinating sights.

We had a lesson from some master shibori artists in stitching, wrapping and tying on a scarf. 

These ladies did not hesitate to correct errors and take your piece and show you how it's done!  They were great!
After our lesson, we walked around the village and visited a kimono store, where the work was outrageously expensive, but rightly so, as it was all hand embroidered or painted.


Back in Nagoya, dinner this evening was at a Brazilian restaurant.  Endless meats and other delicious accompaniments. the finale was grilled pineapple. 

                                           We took a roundabout walk back to our hotel,

                                           visiting an underground mall, and a bookstore.

Used a Japanese style squat toilet in the bookstore.  Not awful - this one was modern, clean, smelled nice, and had an extended and thorough flussshhhhh! 

Even though the streets are crowded, everyone is respectful.  At the bus stop, everyone lines up patiently, no crowding or pushing.  They also respect the traffic lights.  Nobody goes until the walk light is green.
Another fantastic day.  Tomorrow - bullet train and paper making.  I will ask our guide about finding the catholic church in Takamatsu to attend the Saturday vigil mass.  The hotel room Bible was in Japanese and English!
 One last note:  The manhole covers!!!  I wanted to get more rubbings, but we were hustling and it was cold!  Glad I got some nice photos of them anyway.