Friends, Fabric and a very big Buddha

When a good friend says, “I’m going to be in Japan. Want to come?”  You say yes.  Well, I say yes.  And then we spend days in Tokyo, Kamakura, and Ashikaga.  And before you get on the plane to leave, you’re planning your next trip.

Japan is beautiful.  The vibrant colors, the gentle helpfulness of the people, the food, the lucky weather, and gorgeous fabrics.  So much fabric!  I had great difficulty choosing which pictures to share with you today, so I chose randomly.  I hope you like them.

We spent the weekend in Tokyo, including the day trip to Kamakura, then took the train to Ota/Ashikaga.  Tokyo was as I had always imagined.  A lot of lights, everywhere.  It is stylish, clean, busy, walkable, inviting … so enjoyable on so many levels.  We had great weather so it was perfect to walk and walk and walk.  That makes for a perfect, tiring weekend.

We stayed at the Dai Ichi Hotel Annex, close to the Shimbashi subway station in the Ginza district.  This was on a quiet street, and in a good location, or take the subway.  From here, if you walk north along the train tracks, then turn right in a small tunnel, you will find a pedestrian area and lots of street food.  It is always within walking distance of the Hibiyakoen (park), which borders on the Imperial Palace garden.  Again, a good location and it was one of the most inexpensive, nicer hotels we found.

Viewing one of the grand department stores was part of the Tokyo scene we wanted to be a part of.  We chose the Mitsukoshi in the Ginza district.  Oh my goodness!  It was gorgeous, and then we came to the gourmet area, and oh my goodness!  It was gorgeous!  We bought a variety of small snacks for lunch, only to luckily find a bench and enjoyed every bite.

For the day trip to Kamakura, we used the train, tried to use the tourist bus though the traffic made it a little crazy, so we walked some more.  I highly recommend this trip to get out of tokyo.  For more info, check out Japan Guide’s info on the small city.  Don’t miss the big, beautiful Buddha, the walking street, temples, and maybe you’ll happen upon a traditional Japanese wedding too.

After Tokyo, we went on to the OtaAshikaga area.  I highly recommend a visit to the Flower Garden in Ashikaga.  The wisteria was out of season, though it might warrant a trip back there in May.  We benefited from the irises in bloom, so many trees, and a delicious wisteria ice cream!  Mmmm.

Enjoy your trip!  Or for now, just enjoy the photos.

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I started this blog in 2010 as we prepared to move to Shenyang China. Since coming back to the US in 2015, my writing has been less consistent. Trying to find a voice here...

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