Friday, September 2, 2011
Rainy Friday in Higashiyama Area Kyoto - Typhoon Talas providing the moisture
Decided to live more like the locals. Here is my traditional breakfast with fish and rice and a little kelp for salt flavoring. No coffee just green tea. Perhaps a clue about seeing a lot less obesity here than in American and Oz. No french fries-chips in the traditional diet. Rather enjoyable start to my day. Interesting a cold egg kinda pickled. Good enough protein. Low fat I think. Ate it all and satisfying feeling. Perhaps more ready to walk in the rain!
In the background of my day, I have been hearing about a possible Typhoon from the locals. Not really understanding much Japanese, I headed out for my day, destined to go to the nearby post office where I got cash with a minimum of a service charge. Need the cash for subway, buses and food. I left my last cap on the train yesterday, so if was fun to be greeted by the sign Chapelier, or hat maker in French across the street for the Post Office a few blocks from the Hotel Gimmond where I have been for 2 nights. My French ancestors are named Chapelier, or Chappelear in the English of my Grandfather, Harry Chappelear Glessner. Perhaps I will go to buy a new hat in the morning.
Not an alarmist really, just want to keep up on my options. Here is the NASA view of Talas and the Wiki description posted 6:40 PM like 12 minutes ago."typhoon Talas (international designation: 1112, JTWC designation: 15W) is an active tropical cyclone that is currently posed to strike Japan. It is the 12th named storm, the 7th severe tropical storm and the 5th typhoon of the 2011 Pacific typhoon season" And then "As of 1840 UTC September 1, Typhoon Talas is located within 30 nautical miles of 29.3°N 135.1°E, about 375 nmi (695 km; 432 mi) south of Kyoto, Japan. Maximum sustained winds are 65 knots (120 km/h; 75 mph), gusting to 95 knots (176 km/h; 109 mph). Minimum central pressure is 965 mbar (hPa; 28.50 InHg), and the system is moving northwest slowly. Talas is a large storm. It is anticipated to gradually drift north to Japan. " So drifting as it may, I noticed the rain intensity grew during the day as I was out walking.
Here soon after 10 AM just sprinkling rain, a typical coin operated vending machine which are very common everywhere. Coins for the train, coins and bills for all sorts of stuff. Walking west toward the river and the Higashiyama area of Kyoto.
THis shopping arcade just had folks opening up after 10 AM. Close to the Kamo River on Ryokan Sanga.
I crossed the river and noticed willows and cherries along the shore. Here I am looking back west into the city. Rain is picking up slightly. My folding umbrella comes out more.
Seemingly quite quiet and just walk down this lane that looks like residences.
After a bit I walk through one of these red arches and the energy changes to more of a spiritual quiet.
I walked up the slope from what was the Ryosoku-In Temple and discovered I was heading on the stone walks toward the Kiyomizu-Dera described in the Lonely Planet Tour Guide I had been reading. I learned this inside a coffee shop when the rain really started coming down and the wind blew my flexible umbrella apart more and more times. This is the view out a window as I watched the pine branches move more and more in the wind and rain. Hmmm.
I trudged up the wet stone street past many tea shops filled with young students, to the place to enter the large temple complex. Colorful. In the group of umbrella appears to be 3 young women dressed in the traditional geisha style (?). The riot of colors was striking with the background of the austere rain and wind.
Here is a ticket that I just carried into a dark chamber where I was greeted by a rock. As for all temples, took my shoes off, and here is where I sat when I emerged. A symbolism of entering the womb of mother earth I think I read. Pitch black and quiet. Felt more connected to the earth here than so far in Japan. I sense there is a lot of history here.
View of the green valley where the healing waters are offered to the many visitors.
Large lattice of timbers holding up the temple as seen from the steps to the water pond.
Drinking the water with the long handled cups.
Rain drops on a garden pool as I walked out of the temple complex
The wet stone stairs that I had walked up before with an increasing intensity of rain and wind, here is where I decided to take the bus back to the Kyoto train station and regroup and rest for the remaining of the day.