Friday, January 26, 2007

Temple hopping

Blogger is really playing up at the moment so I'll give this weekend's adventures in installments if possible.


It's difficult to think of Kyoto as a city most of the time, indeed even as the former capital of Japan and a place where many bloody battles were fought between the samurai, most areas just feel too peaceful to give it city status.

As I mentioned previously the view from my guest house room over the local streets is a typically classical Japanese scene.

and from my office the view is a rather distracting one

I seem to be spending most of my time staring at the clouds puzzling over brane interactions. I'm counting on it being written in the sky.

Though I've got a few weeks here I headed the way all tourists in Kyoto must and on Saturday I went wandering through a few of the 400 temples. Kyoto is networked by a very easy bus system so getting anywhere is pretty trivial. All stops are announced on both the speakers and the display at the front in English. I headed to Gion, the area famous for the Geisha (though I hear there are less than 100 true Geisha left) and really the heart of the city and went towards the closest temple to hand.
Fortuitously there was a wedding going on at the time in an open-walled building and with chanting and incense burning all around it was a stark contrast to the busy shopping street outside. That said there are enough tourists (mostly Japanese) in most of the temples to make it all seem pretty busy. The power of the gardens and temple buildings are that even with the throng of onlookers they still feel stunningly peaceful places.
A recently married couple (I presume) were also in the area having their photos taken.
This monk was one of the overseers of the ceremony.

End of installment 1, blogger doesn't want to comply today.

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