I’ve decided on my favorite between soba and udon (udon). I’ve visited a traditional onsen (relaxing and enjoyable). I even saw a geisha (actually three) on the streets of Kyoto. I’m still nowhere near becoming a local, but I have to say: this first month living in Japan has been one of the most curious in my life. We’ve fit in quite a bit of travel and have been learning at top speed. The language barrier is by far the biggest challenge, but I have yet to encounter anyone who isn’t willing to help. I’m also becoming quite proud of my hand signal abilities and besides: the smile and nod is universal.
As I left off with in my last post, Kiseki no Hoshi was undergoing a display change. We helped complete the display install and here are some photos of the progression which is remarkably quick.
After the dance performances were completed, the display was modified for the longer-term display of bonsai. This display included less floral material than usual because the bonsai are intended to be the focus. After helping to make the changes and install the bonsai, we learned how to properly water bonsai of this age and structure.
A holiday gave us a long weekend where we traveled to Kyoto for the first time. We spent four days in Kyoto and visited many different temple gardens and local sights. We packed in many visits and cultural experiences, far too many to write in depth, so here is a sampling:
Now were off to a placement at Sorakoen garden in Kobe. Here we will learn about pine pruning and the traditional practice of tying bamboo together for fencing. While those are the main topics, the Japanese people have shown us incredible generosity so I am sure the week will include many other learning opportunities.