i spent my first day in kyoto with esther, a girl who has Japanese parents and they all live in the us. she was spending time in japan in order to re-connect to her roots. we first visited the arts and crafts museum and then the manga museum. we visited temples and shrines, the philosopher’s path and a zen garden.
we had ramen made (the pork lard kind) and gyoza. also, we were lucky enough to find a fair in the garden of a temple. i bought a wooden frame and the hippie japanese guy who sold it to me wanted to know where i was from. when I said romania, he was polite and said: aaaa! but i saw it meant nothing to him. i helped him with: wurope! and his second smile told me he had gotten it that time.
there are no stray dogs in japan. just temple cats. i love animals and it’s always easier to connect to them in a foreign country so i had a love connection with a group of cats in Kyoto. no kidding!
the most exciting part of the day was the afternoon when we went geisha hunting in pontocho. it was early, so we could only spot one young, very beautiful one, in a café, with two older women who were upset when we took their picture.
before taking the train home, we went up the kyoto tower.