Some observations from travels

Posts tagged “people

Weekly Photo Challenge: Fleeting

I’m late for the other week’s challenge, but I couldn’t help myself.  Here’s my addition to the Fleeting challenge.  I hope you all had fun browsing through what everyone has contributed to this challenge.

Sakura, or the cherry blossoms, are revered flowers here in Japan.  It is said that the transience of these flowers symbolises a Japanese cultural tradition, for its blooming en masse as extreme beauty followed by a quick death.  It had been associated with mortality as the ephemeral nature of life.  These beauties have to be enjoyed really quickly as they will suddenly go as quickly as they blossomed.








A Word a Week Challenge – Face




DSC_0265These are stone sculptures with images of babies commonly seen around buddhist temples.  Jizō statues are popular in Japan as they believe that it can alleviate the suffering of both the living and those who have died.  Jizō are also honoured by modern buddhist believers in Japan as the protector of the unborn, miscarried, still-born and aborted babies.

I have seen many of these statues but these photos were from a recent visit to a temple in Osaka.  I liked these statues as the faces of the Jizō are more expressive and serene.  And my favourite is the first photos where it showed both mother and baby, which I haven’t seen before.

Don’t forget to drop by A Word in Your Ear for more of this week’s A Word a Week Challenge.

The Ancient Capital of Kyoto

Kyoto was the former capital of Japan for over 1000 years yet even until today it remains as the country’s cultural centre and very much loved by visitors both locally and from around the world.  It truly is a magical place.  Unfortunately for me, I only had a short day to visit, but definitely not the last one – I will be back for more.

Following the weekend at Tateyama Alpine Route, next on my agenda was the ancient capital of Kyoto!  It is a super express ride from Nagoya and quite easy to get around.  From the time I stepped out of the train, the atmosphere around the Kyoto Station was welcoming.  With the Kyoto city tourism right within a few steps from the central exit I felt comfortable tackling the day tour already.  The ladies at the counter were helpful, spoke very good english and knew what was going on as we spoke.

As it was the golden week many places were closed due to the many public holidays happening that week.  So I thought I will start with some world heritage sites.  First up was Sanjusangen-do Temple.  This was second top on my list of places to see (first on the list was the Imperial Palace) for its collection of 1001 Sanju-Kannon statues of buddhist deity.  What I failed to read even at the back of my entry ticket was there was a very strict rule on ‘no photos’ inside the hall.  I was speechless! as this was the main reason I visited this place! But, I moved on and enjoyed the Kannons and planted them in my memory.  There are photos on-line and books about them as well.  Nevertheless, outside the temple was as beautiful as the ancient Kannons.

The original temple was built around 1164 but lost in fire then reconstructed in 1266 and has remained unchanged for 700 years.  It has since had four great renovations since.  It is also known for its 120 metres long temple hall made in the Wayo or Japanese style architecture.  The name Sanjusangen-do derived from its famous thirty-three spaces between the columns.


There are literally over a thousand temples and shrines in Kyoto.  I managed to visit a couple smaller once within the vicinity of Sanjusangen-do temple before I made it to another UNESCO world cultural heritage listed building – Kiyomizu-dera.  This temple was more tourist friendly which allowed photos, except from the private garden, where you can sit down and enjoy with only your memory.

Kiyomizu Temple is set atop a hill along the Otowa Mountain.  Built in 778 which, unfortunately, was also burnt down by fires then rebuilt during the Edo Period between 1631-33.  The temple is beautiful with the Kiyomizu stage built high on 12 metre pillars and boasts a great view of the city.  The landscaped garden all around the temple is so pleasant to walk around (even when crowded) as there are splashes of colour everywhere.


From Kiyomizu temple the walk down beautiful Higashiyama District where you find souvenir shops, cafes, restaurants or just people watching is another experience.


There are many interesting sight to see on the eastern side of Kyoto also known as Higashiyama Dirstrict, but it is a vast area to cover.  I missed out on Nijo Castle and the Kyoto Imperial Palace.  Instead I chose to visit Rokuon-ji Temple more famously known as Kinkaku-ji (The Golden Pavilion.)  The golden pavilion is a shariden, a buddhist hall containing relics of buddha.  The garden and buildings are believed to represent the pure land of buddha in this world (albeit the crowd) and it was crowded.  The design is quite tourist-efficient, though, as everyone can just walk through a path and see all the important features of the temple, without overcrowding in one area.

The garden around the pavilion is a National Special Historic Site and Special Place of Scenic Beauty where one should enjoy strolling around.  For such a popular tourist attraction, this might be a bit challenging to accomplish, as it seemed always crowded.


The rain stopped and the clouds were clearing, but it was also getting late and museums and temples were closing.  Instead of going to Gion District, which I really wanted not only to visit but experience, I chose to make a final dash over to Heian Jingu Shrine.  Considered as the replica of the Kyoto Imperial Palace, Heian Jingu is an important cultural property of Japan.  A young temple, compared to other temples in Kyoto, at only over a hundred years old – 1895, was burned down in 1976 and rebuilt using moneys collected from donations to what is now the current structure.


And that concluded my day in Kyoto, but only for now, I will definitely visit Kyoto again especially as I want to experience the culture in Gion District.  I hope you enjoyed the photo tour with me.  Up next is Nara also a former capital of Japan.

12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour: Chapter 8 – Atsuta History Course

Welcome back.  We move on to Chapter 8: Atsuta History Course.  Atsuta Shrine is considered one of the most venerable shrines in Japan  second to Ise Grand Shrine or simply called ‘Jingu’ meaning The Shrine.  This chapter’s course will introduce us not only to Atsuta Shrine and its treasures but some history around its property.  So join me for a bit of a stroll around Atsuta.

1.  Atsuta Jingu (Main Shrine).  I have visited this shrine more than any other shrines in Nagoya.  I am not a shinto believer but do not mind experiencing the many events celebrated in this beautiful temple.  Previous visits included last Christmas day when they replaced the shimenawa and in Chapter 3 of the Nagoya Tour which I have written about.  The other times I have visited were for other reasons but every time it seemed I discover something new about the shrine.

For this chapter I timed to visit Atsuta when they had a special dance festival on the first of May.  The Bugaku Shinji is a ceremonial dance performed with ancient court music since the tenth century during the Heian era.  Present day celebrations are just reminders of the bygone monarchy days of Nagoya.


2.  Atsuta Jungu (Treasure Museum).  Since 1966 the museum collection exceeds 6000 items, of which 95 precious items are designated as national treasures of Nagoya.  The items were donated by people from the imperial families to general philanthropists, including a large number of swords.


3.  Saidanbashi Bridge (Birthplace of Dodoitsu).  This small bridge was a scene of a farewell between a mother and her son on his way to the battle of Odawara, led by Toyotomi Hideyoshi in 1590.  The young man, unfortunately, died during his military service wherein the mother replaced it as a memorial for her lost son.  The original ornamental cap on the post was engraved with a touching inscription of the mother’s love and is now kept in the Nagoya City museum.  Dodoitsu, a Japanese poetry and a famous ballad played with a three-stringed Japanese instrument-shamisen apparently originated here.   The area later on flourished as a literary centre.


4.  Miya No Watashi Park.  This park was the former site of a ferry crossing along the only sea route on the Tokaido Highway.  Known as Shichiri no Watashi, a Japanese phrase which means crossing on seven ri, which translates to 27 kilometres in current measurement.  The stone night light marked the departure and arrival of night ferries.


5.  Shirotori Garden.  This is a beautiful Japanese garden with a theme called ‘a watery story’ to represent the geographical features of the Chubu region.  Established in 1991 and spreads through 3.7 hectares.  I have visited this garden numerous times as well but never tire of its changing beauty.  I have written about previous visits here and here.  So for this post I would like to show the garden during different colours.


6.  Hoji-ji Temple, Shiratori Tomb.  The shrine was built as a small local shrine where Kobo Daishi worshiped Yamatotakeru-no-Mikoto and protects the treasure of Shiratori Tomb, believed to be the tomb of Yamatotakeru.


7.  Danpusan Tomb.  Danpusan means ‘to be without a husband’ as a reference to Mizuhime, wife of Prince Yamato Takeru, was known for not re-marrying after Takeru died.  This is one of the legends behind this burial mound which has not been excavated.  Known as the largest key-hole shaped mound, whoever was buried there must have been an important figure in history.


8.  Seigan-ji Temple (Birthplace of Minamoto-no Yoritomo).  The shrine contains a stone monument as a birthplace of Minamoto-no Yoritomo in 1147, the founder of the Kamakura Shogunate, a Japanese feudal military government.  He was the third son of Minamoto-no Yoshitomo, the head of the Minamoto clan, a general during the Heian Period of the Japanese history.


This course was a rather interesting walking tour as it contained a number of historical facts that I would never have known just by visiting the shrine.  I hope you enjoyed that as much as I have.

If you would like to trace previous chapters, here they are:

Chapter 1: Nagoya Castle Course

Chapter 2: Course covering region of the Owari Tokugawa family and the Cultural Path

Chapter 3: Oda Nobunaga “Owari’s Foolhardy Youth” Course

Chapter 4: Course Covering the Birthplace of Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Kato Kiyomasa

Chapter 5: Course for Experiencing Nagoya Manufacturing

Chapter 6: Nagoya Stroll Course

Chapter 7: Funtown Osu Course

Weekly Photo Challenge: Culture

This contribution is a bit late for last week’s Photo Challenge.  But, nevertheless, I would like to share this bit of cultural experience I had last week from Toyokawa, Japan.

Toyokawa Inari Shrine Spring Festival

Toyokawa Inari Shrine Spring Festival

These worshipers, mostly men, and a lady which can be seen here in peach dress, help lift this shrine placed on a deck of (heavy-looking) timber from the main shrine and around the temple grounds.  Stopping is main halls and lifting it at least three times.  The great spring festival is for harvest prayer.  Around Japan many spring festivals are celebrated for fertility and harvest.  Last year I also witnessed another Matsuri for fertility during spring time.

The Historical Town of Takayama

We had the chance to visit another part of the what is known in Japan as the Central Honshu.  Described by tour books as the region that shows the contrasts of present Japan – with its densely populated coastal cities whilst in the middle the highest and wildest mountains can be found.  Whilst the region is very accessible to travel it has kept its traditional rural lifestyles, architecture and festivals.

Last Sunday, the 14th of April was the first day of Takayama’s world renown Spring Festival – Sanno Matsuri.  The festival is a celebration of the guardian deity of the southern half of the ‘old town’ Takayama to welcome spring as well as pray for good harvest and peace for the year.  The main event of the festival is the parade of 12 yatais (festival floats.)  Later in the year after the hot days of summer Takayama then celebrates the Autumn Festival where there are 11 of these yatais on show.  They are believed to date back as far as the 17th century.  The current Takayama spring festival in the Ishikawa Prefecture have been celebrated for the past 40 years.

Every float has its own unique design with very intricate details.  They were very beautiful!  Here are photos of the floats but I haven’t named them individually as I do not wish to misquote their names.


Walking through the old town we experienced the beautifully preserved Edo period merchant’s businesses and private homes.  Takayama is not only known for these festivals.  The city is also well-known for the numerous sake breweries and gourmet restaurants.  The old town was awarded the highest 3-star Michelin travel award as a destination worth travelling.


Aside from the beautiful festival and old preserved streets, it was the spirit of the locals that I loved the most.  These festival participants were very proud of their heritage.  The police and volunteers were very helpful, considering there were many lost (tourists) souls with their guide books and cameras.  Here is my tribute to the lovely people of Hida Takayama.


We truly enjoyed our brief day in Takayama.  Our only wish was if we could have stayed to watch the night festival when the floats were lit and went around the city streets once more.  But…there’s always next time.  I look forward to visiting the city again to explore the many temples and I can’t wait!

When you do get the chance to visit, It is really worth it!  And stay the night if you can.

Hida Takayama’s detailed website is here.

12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour: Chapter 5 – Course for Experiencing Nagoya Manufacturing

This chapter’s course takes us through the origin of the ‘Manufacturing Kingdom Nagoya.’  Nagoya’s manufacturing industry contributes to the core industries that help build the modern Japan.  So let’s go for a bit of walk around the manufacturing side of Nagoya.

1.  Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology.  Established in 1994 by the Toyota group utilising the red brick factory building built in 1911 and preserved as an important industrial asset.  The importance of manufacturing is shown here as the birthplace of Toyota group.

The museum is quite detailed with both textile machinery and automotive pavilions.  These machineries are manned with live demonstrations.  Unless you are an automotive buff or have a passion for machineries, this museum was rather too technical for my taste.


2.  Noritake Garden.  Since 1904 Noritake started as a manufacturer of porcelain tableware for exporting.  The garden was established to commemorate Noritake’s 100th anniversary. The garden has various facilities including a museum of porcelain production history, a craft centre, showrooms and lifestyle shops and cafe.  The garden itself showcases many historical features such as The Six Chimneys which shows the remains of old chimneys as a testament to Noritake as one of the world’s leading tableware manufacturers.  Along the garden walls a retaining wall was made using old bricks from the foundation of the original factory building.  Attached to the wall, known as the “Kiln Wall” are plates inscribed with donors to the Noritake Garden Foundation.  Around the garden an old single kiln can be seen, an old factory gate, and a relaxing fountain plaza lined with trees and flowers.

This is a beautiful garden covered with seasonal trees – which can be enjoyed at different times of the year.  You do not need to be a big fan of fine porcelain tableware to admire the beauty of this museum and garden.  Unfortunately, cameras were not allowed within the museum areas.  I spent more time just sitting outside admiring the flower beds and trees.


3.  Bean’s Confectionary/Mamefuku Main Store.  Famous for manufacturing confectionary in Nagoya since 1939.  Their main products are traditional soy bean snacks made from large soybeans harvested in Hokkaido.  These types of snacks are popular in Japan for their rich nutritional values.  The store runs classes as well as tours.



4.  Candy and Toy Wholesale Stores Street.  The street is lined with wholesalers displaying boxes of traditional sweets since 1923 whilst the Nagoya Castle was being built.  The construction people would visit the street to purchase their supply of confection.  After WWII air raids the area recovered quickly and became known to supply confection and toys.

This was a nice street to walk through as the colourful display of confection and the collection from simple to the weird-looking toys on sale here are quite enticing.


5.  Nagoya Japanese Fan (Suehirodou).  Alongside Kyoto, Nagoya is known for producing traditional folding fans.  Kyoto’s folding fans are more luxurious used by ladies in their traditional Japanese dance.  Nagoya’s folding fans are used more for ceremonial events such as weddings and fans designed for men.



6.  Japanese Kite (Takomo Original Store).  Nagoya is famous for producing traditional Japanese kites.  The original Takomo building and precious materials were burned down during WWII air raids.  However, traditional techniques are still used to make these kites until today.  Their designs are popular as interior decorations for many homes.  The store offers tours and workshops such as taking your own photo or design and making an original kite.


7.  Nagoya Black Kimonos with Crests (Yamekatsu Senko).  The traditional black kimono with crest are unique to Nagoya.  These black-dyed kimonos are worn during formal occasions and for mourning are dyed with family crests using traditional time-consuming process.  Since the Edo period in the 17th century the Owari clan designated a dying expert to design flags and banners that later on extended to the dyeing of formal kimonos.  The present Yamekatsu Senko offers tours and workshops to experience the black dyeing process.



There was a part (Shoes Design and Craft School) that I skipped and decided to miss out during this walking tour.  My overall experience during this chapter’s tour was that it was quite technical, except for Noritake Garden which I thoroughly enjoyed and will visit again.  The course distance was quite long but it was interesting to walk through the small streets and discover another side to Nagoya than the ones I am familiar with.

I hope you continue to enjoy exploring the 12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour with me.  If you would like to have a peek at the previous chapters they are here:

Chapter 1: Nagoya Castle Course

Chapter 2: Course covering region of the Owari Tokugawa family and the Cultural Path

Chapter 3: Oda Nobunaga “Owari’s Foolhardy Youth” Course

Chapter 4: Course Covering the Birthplace of Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Kato Kiyomasa

Enjoy your spring time wherever you are in the world.  Until next time.

12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour: Chapter 4 – Course Covering the Birthplace of Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Kato Kiyomasa

Welcome to Chapter 4 of the 12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour.  If you (still) haven’t visited the first three chapters of this tour, it’s quite alright, but you don’t know what you’re missing out on! Just kidding.  I would love if you did as I myself am enjoying learning more about the city where I am currently residing, which I would not be too keen to read about in history books.

This chapter promises to take us through the hometown of two extraordinary leaders in Japan.  Hideyoshi is known for succeeding after Nobunaga’s attempt to reunify Japan.  In his efforts to do so he had failed attempts to occupy Korea and ordered execution of Christians in Japan for fear of dividing the countrymen’s loyalty.  The second hero in the chapter is Kiyomasa, is known as the “Devila General” a true samurai – “a warrior, nothing more nothing less.”  He fought alongside Hideyoshi for their common causes, but Kiyomasa had other agendas.  On the positive note he was famous for his bravery and being an excellent castle architect, but on the flip side, he was also known for his strong samurai beliefs – “poetry and dancing were shameful pastimes for a samurai, and ordered anyone who found himself engaged in the latter to commit suicide.”  These two sources alone has given me a slightly deeper understanding of the Japanese culture.

The course starts and finishes at the same subway station stop.  All the seven points of interest are within the Nakamura Park.  Let’s go for a walk.

1.  Aka-torii Gateway.  One word – Bam! This massive torii gate meets you as you walk out of the subway station exit, much like how the Colosseum of Rome hits you in the face when you come out of the train station.  Stands a tall 24 metres, about 6 story high building.  This imposing structure marks the entrance to the Nakamura Park and the Toyokuni Shrine.


2.  Toyokuni Shrine.  This shrine was built to honour Hideyoshi as a deity for career advancement and success.  Based on his own success from a humble beginning here in Nakamura to his efforts to reunify Japan.  A short walk from the main torii you will then see the Toyokuni torii and the japanese garden surrounding it.


3.  Birthplace of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.  A stone memorial was built in 1911 to mark what was believed to be Hideyoshi’s birthplace.  Although another theory stated that his actual birthplace was about a kilometre away from this memorial.  Locals regard this memorial with great respect as Hideyoshi is considered as one of Japan’s great leaders.


4.  Josen-ji Temple.  This temple was originally built in 1606 by Kiyomasa to worship Hideyoshi.  Built on the former sight of Hideyoshi’s father-in-law and believed to be his original birthplace.


5.  Myogyo-ji Temple.  It is said that Kiyomasa used remaining materials from the construction of Nagoya Castle to build this temple in 1610.  This is believed to be his birthplace as well.  Known for being a brave commander his statue inside the temple shows his gallant (fierce) look in full armour.


6.  Hachiman Shrine.  Believed to originally exist within the Nagoya Castle grounds, Hachiman Shrine was known as where Kiyomasa always prayed for victory before heading to battles.  Kiyomasa was revered as a strong military commander through many different tales of valour, and perhaps the Hachiman Shrine played a big part in these successes.

Hachiman Shrine

Hachiman Shrine


7.  Hideyoshi & Kiyomasa Memorial Museum.  Within the Nakamura Park’s Cultural Plaza is the Museum for Hideyoshi’s and Kiyomasa’s historical materials.  The museum is small and intimate.  It features items from their battles and maps of their conquests.


There were other interesting features around the Nakamura Park grounds.


This was a pleasant walking course but not boring as the many points of interest had beautiful features in each of them.  If you would like to see the previous chapters they are here:

Chapter 1: Nagoya Castle Course

Chapter 2: Course covering region of the Owari Tokugawa family and the Cultural Path

Chapter 3: Oda Nobunaga “Owari’s Foolhardy Youth” Course

Happy Easter everyone and have a great week ahead.

12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour: Chapter 1-Nagoya Castle Course

I have been here in Nagoya, Japan for a year now and must admit that many more sights remain unexplored.  So, to mark my year here, I have set a new (challenge) project for myself! I learned about the 12 Chapters of Nagoya Tour through an email and found it quite interesting.  So here goes the first of the 12 chapters, that I plan to accomplish each week, for the remainder of the spring months.  I hope you’ll come along for the ride and have fun.

1.  The tour kicks off from the Nagoya Station.  First stop was the Keiho-in Temple.  Within the temple there is a Jizo statue – Guchikiki Jizoson, with its right hand cupping its ear, as it listens to visitors complaints.  A small cozy temple with beautiful limestone pagodas.  I didn’t see the inside of the hall as it was closed.

Keiho-in Temple

Keiho-in Temple

Guchikiki Jizoson

Guchikiki Jizoson

2.  The next stop was the Endo-ji Shopping Mall.  This is Nagoya’s oldest shopping mall which was named after the Endon-ji Temple town dating back to 1654.  The design is quite similar to Osu Kanon, but with lesser shops and very quiet.  It has a high ceilinged roof which is for pedestrian access only and stretches through a few blocks that leads you to the Street of Shikemichi.

One end of the Endo-ji Shopping Mall

One end of the Endo-ji Shopping Mall

The other half of the mall across from the expressway

The other half of the mall across from the expresswayTraditional sweetsTraditional sweets

Old tea chests from an old tea shop

Old tea chests from an old tea shop


Within the mall there is a temple and shrine.  The Endon-ji Temple was moved here in 1610, along with a whole Kiyosu neighbourhood, whilst building the Nagoya Temple.

Endon-ji Temple

Chokyuzan Endon-ji Temple

chokyuzan endo-ji temple

Konpira Shrine

The Konpira Shrine houses the god of fire honoured since 1859.

konpira shrine

3.  Towards the other end of the Endo-ji mall we turn right into the Streets of Shikemichi, a Historic Townscape Conservation District.  When the Nagoya Castle was being built in 1610, the town folks of Kiyosu were moved here and it became what was known as Nagoya’s Merchant District – Kiyosu-goshi merchants.  After the fire outbreak in the 1700 the roads were widened into four ‘ken‘, about seven meters, to allow fire engines to go through in case of another fire.  The name Shikenmichi “Four Ken Road” came from the newly widened road.  The architecture preserved here since 1740 are old-fashioned warehouses and gave you a feel of the Edo Period Nagoya.






Sengen Shrine

Sengen Shrine



A Yanegamisama is a Nagoya custom of erecting a rooftop shrine to ward of diseases and disasters as well as reflecting the great devotion of ordinary town folks.

4.  Walking towards the end of the Endo-ji mall you will find a quaint bridge – Gojobashi Bridge.  The bridge was moved here in 1610 and was the first bridge over the Horikawa River.  Originally made of wood it was reconstructed into concrete in 1938.

gojobashi bridge

Inscription on the ornamental knobs - "Gojo Bridge, Keisho 7, Year of the Tiger, June, Lucky Day"

Inscription on the ornamental knobs – “Gojo Bridge, Keisho 7, Year of the Tiger, June, Lucky Day”

gojobashi detail1

gojobashi detail2

5.  After getting lost and confused (following the walking map) as I am map challenged, I succumb and had to get the help from google maps to find the next part, which was only meant to take me 9 minutes to walk.  The Nagoya Tosho-gu Shrine and Nagoya Shrine were found.  The shrine was originally built at the Sannomaru area of Nagoya Castle in 1619.  It was moved to the current site but was burnt down during World War II.

The torii in front of the Nagoya Tosho-gu Shrine

The torii in front of the Nagoya Tosho-gu Shrine

tosho-gu shrine1

Details of the Tokugawa family

Details of the Tokugawa family

The mausoleum of Tokugawa Yoshinao's spouse.  Formerly used at Kenchuji Temple and moved here in 1953

The mausoleum of Tokugawa Yoshinao’s spouse. Formerly used at Kenchuji Temple and moved here in 1953

The Nagoya Shrine, built is 911 and moved here from the Nagoya Castle grounds in 1876

The Nagoya Shrine, built is 911 and moved here from the Nagoya Castle grounds in 1876

Row of torii

Row of torii

Row of massha

Row of massha

6.  Needless to say, I was tired and lost interest in walking any further.  The next sights on the list were meant to be the Remains of Magistrate’s Office, Honmachi Ote Gate and Feudal Lord’s Alley.  Lastly, the goal of this walk was the Nagoya Castle, which I have visited in the past and was not in a hurry to visit it again.  Here are some photos from last year’s visit.

castle reflection

nagoya castle


Last thoughts about the walking tour: I did enjoy exploring and experiencing the old side of Nagoya.  Although I was lost (my fault) I must say that the map used in the guide is not very helpful as the roads are not clearly labelled, which doesn’t help.  I totally enjoyed the Street of Shikemichi which transported me to the 17th century Nagoya.  I am looking forward to the next chapter, but be more prepared with my own detailed map!  Do come along for more discoveries and stories in my quest to get to know this city.

Post Script (from two weeks after)

6.  The Remains of Magistrate’s Office, Honmachi Ote Gate and Feudal Lord’s Alley.  So on a cool day I took another walk to the Nagoya Tosho-gu Shrine and my, how the scenery have changed in a couple of weeks.  The cherry trees were starting to blossom!


Then walking across the street, literally, from Tosho-gu Shrine was The Remains of Magistrate’s Office.  A gate that now sits in front of the Aichi Trade Center.  Following the map across the dry moat you are met by two tall stone walls – Honmachi Ote Gate.  I the past the gate led to daimyo road, a street lined by residences of feudal lords.  I did not notice any signage or indication of where the Feudal Lord’s Alley used to be.  The alley indicated on the map is now lined with the police headquarters and a park.


That closes Chapter 1.  Hope you all have a good Holy weekend.

A Word a Week Challenge: Zoom

This is an interesting challenge as I love zoomed in photos, but do not take the most excellent ones myself.  Still, scanning through my photos, I found some beautiful ones that I feel are worth sharing.  One of my favourite subjects are people – random and candid.  It is quite a challenge zooming in on people without invading their privacy or intruding on whatever they’re doing.  So I thought for this challenge I will share some photos of people I have zoomed in enough, hopefully, so as not to offend them.













Don’t forget to visit A Word a Week Challenge over at A Word in Your Ear.