Silent Sunday

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Foliage Season in Japan

My dear friends and fellow bloggers, I am back! And I have certainly missed you all!

Last month I took some much needed time away from work and went to Japan for a visit. This was my third time in the country. I traveled extensively in the Kansai region, checking out autumn foliage as the season progressed.

Below is a quick recap of my trip. Continue reading “Foliage Season in Japan”

Kinkaku-ji and Ginkaku-ji, Kyoto

If you’ve been to Kyoto, chances are that you’ve been to Kinkaku-ji (金閣寺). It is one of most visited places in the ancient capital of Japan.

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The Golden Pavilion has three levels, each carrying a distinctive architecture style: shinden (11th century aristocracy) on the first level, buke-zukuri (warrior residence on the second, and Chinese Zen (Buddhist temple) on the third. Continue reading “Kinkaku-ji and Ginkaku-ji, Kyoto”

Plum Blossom at Kitano Tenmangu, Kyoto

Kitano Tenmangu (北野天満宮) is a Shinto shrine located in northwest Kyoto. It is built in 947AD to honor Sugawara no Michizane.

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An important scholar, poet and politician of the Heian period, Sugawara no Michizane (菅原道眞) read poems at the age of five and wrote Chinese poems at the age of eleven.  Continue reading “Plum Blossom at Kitano Tenmangu, Kyoto”

Gion Kawakami, Kyoto

After making a brief stop in the snow laden Kanazawa, we arrived in Kyoto late afternoon to a brilliant sunset.

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For dinner, we went to Gion Kawakami (祇園川上). It turned out to be one of the most satisfying meals we’ve had in Japan this time around. Continue reading “Gion Kawakami, Kyoto”

Kanazawa in the Snow

I did not finish writing about our Japan trip last year because by the time I got to this post, it was already the beginning of May. With spring in the air and tulips in full bloom, it simply felt out of context to recount snow flurries in this city of gold marsh.

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We visited Kanazawa (金沢) during a three-hour layover on our way from Shirakawa-go to Kyoto. Continue reading “Kanazawa in the Snow”

Amazake – Sweet Sake Drink

Winter has finally arrived in Seattle. On Thursday, we had our first snow of the season.

I suddenly remembered that I still have some sake kasu (sake lees) from our sake brewery visits earlier this year. If you happen to be in Japan late January – February in a sake brewing region, don’t miss the opportunity to participate in a brewery tour. It is really fun as well as educational. We even happened upon a once-a-year brewery gathering and tasting event that day.  I am by no means a drinker, but I had a BLAST! Continue reading “Amazake – Sweet Sake Drink”

Shirakawa-go in the Snow

After spending a bitter-cold and somewhat uncomfortable night in our farmhouse, we woke up to a pleasant surprise!

Looking out the window

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The snow was coming down like down feathers… Continue reading “Shirakawa-go in the Snow”