It dawned on me today that the Instagram post I put out on what would have been by dad’s birthday was something I wanted to save for posterity. As this day is the anniversary of his passing and this blog is like my diary, specifically related to travel it felt natural to add it here.
“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.”
– Lao Tzu
February 26th 2019 I will officially have been travelling for two years. I am writing this blog post a little ahead of time as I am getting ready for my trip to China. I’ll be arriving in China second week of February to teach English for five months and travel around for one, therefore I’ll be in the middle of introduction week and course when this blog post was supposed to go up. I decided to be efficient 😉
“Nagoya? I heard about Nagoya, saw it on the map, I just didn’t think anyone actually got off the train there…” – Nathanael
I did a short pitstop in Nagoya just because I had time, and completely mis-calculated so my Japan Rail Pass expired while I was there… Moronic, but fortunately not fatal. Not even to my budget.
“Tokyo may have more money and Kyoto more culture; Nara may have more history and Kobe more style, but Osaka has the biggest heart.” – Vikas Swarup
I had heard that Osaka used to be called “Naniwa” (like the StarCraft player!!11). Reason to go!
Just kidding. I went to Osaka to eat food and see the lights. In true Annie-form I found out about the castle just one day before I arrived 😛 Typical me…
“In Nagasaki, American planes did drop warning leaflets – but not till Aug. 10, a day after the city was bombed.”
– Lydia Millet
Nagasaki is the capital and the largest city of Nagasaki Prefecture on the island of Kyushu in Japan. The city’s name means “long cape” in Japanese. Just like Hiroshima Nagasaki was on my list because of the atomic bomb dropped there during WW2, I wanted to see what it felt like standing at ground zero.
“I don’t really like udon noodles… I tried them three times. Each time they sad “oh, THESE are special udon noodles, very special to this area, but they were ever good… I’ve tried them now. They are not really for me.”
Peter’s #FOMO (fear of missing out) is probably bigger than mine… But then, I went with him to check out the food stalls even though I just got back to the hostel and was exhausted from walking around the whole day, just cause I didn’t want to miss out on anything, so… We might be the same…
“There are hardships and there are delights.”
– Japanese Proverb
Hiroshima Castle/Carp Castle was constructed in the 1590s, but was destroyed by the atomic bombing on August 6, 1945. It was rebuilt in 1958, a replica of the original that now serves as a museum of Hiroshima’s history before World War II.
“I told him there was one city that they must not bomb without my permission and that was Kyoto.”
– Henry L. Stimson
Hiroshima and Nagasaki were on my list because of the a-bombs being dropped. I am a bit of a history buff, and visiting these places, actually standing where monumental historical events took place is very special to me.
“Even monkeys fall from trees.”
– Japanese Proverb
I did three things in Kyoto, the Fushimi Inari shrine, the Nishiki Market and a stay at a ryokan. On the way to Kyoto, from the Shinkansen, I got some awesome shots of Mount Fuji too. I was super lucky, it was the clearest of days and my view completely unobstructed
“Like Luke Skywalker and Han Solo looking for spare parts on the planet Xenon”
– The side streets of Akihabara, according to Peter Carey
What do I want to remember from Tokyo? Meeting up with Tia & Rune, crossing the Shibuya crossing and realizing halfway through that I was crossing the Shibuya crossing(WOOP!), meeting Marlene & Bent, spending half an hour trying to get out of Shibuya Station upon arrival to the city… There’s so much. I liked Tokyo. I liked it a lot.