Friday, February 1, 2013

Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan, Part III

And here we are, the last of the pictures from my short trip to Tokyo.
These are from around the area of Sensō-ji temple, down the nearby side streets.

Leaving the temple area

There were many shops along the street.  The ones on the side I was standing on here were mostly closed.  The opened ones housed traditional papers, inks, and paintbrushes; traditional Japanese dress; restaurants; and old pictures or books.
Here, I was inside a pretty garden.  I was nervous about being in a place I shouldn't be, but it was tranquil and nice.  I made sure not to disturb the worshiper there, and I only took pictures after he had gone.

This is inside that garden.  I really enjoyed getting to rest in this space with no rushing people, just plants, some shrines, and a dragon fountain.

And a gate to somewhere that looks important

This is the dragon fountain.  The dippers are used by worshipers to bring the purifying water to their hands which bring the water to their mouths.

New customersThis isn't the standard way of transport, of course, but seemed like a nice addition to the culture and tradition of the temple area.

Heading back toward the temple area

I didn't know this before I arrived (I had no time to spare for research, which made me arrive anxious), but the Japanese drive on the left side of the road like they do in England.  Huh.
 Again, I want to say that I really want to go back when I can really learn about what I'm looking at.  And can you believe I did no research about this trip?  (I was quickly preparing for loads of other stuff at the end of my stay in Korea, but still!)  I am really, really glad that I went; spending time on my own was such a refreshment.  And not having to go to work and not having to stress about everything on my plate?  Divine.  I'd do it again in a heartbeat.  My one regret on this trip is that I knew nothing.  Not which foods were good, not how to act at the temple, and not if I could get away with playing the white foreigner with big eyes card.

Next time will be different.

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