From the Desk of Honor Raconteur
As some of you may know, I recently went to Japan for two weeks. This has been a dream of mine since my freshman year of college. In no way was I disappointed. The people were kind and patient with my stumbling Japanese, the food was good (if sometimes weird), and the land incredibly gorgeous. Below are a select few pictures that I took while there, put here purely for your enjoyment.
As you can see, the sakura trees (cherry trees) were in full bloom in Tokyo. This picture I took in Shinjuku park and the area was filled with trees that were so full with petals that it was actually snowing cherry blossoms. It was gorgeous. Pictures don’t begin to do it justice. (And yes, that walk I took in the park will make it into a book. Somewhere. I don’t know where yet, but it WILL go in somewhere.)
This was actually a farewell dinner for my friend that I was visiting. It was a highly entertaining evening – in more ways than one! The people at the table were all highly educated, interesting, and fun personalities which made it entertaining enough. But we were eating at a Mexican restaurant. (I know. In Japan, we ate at a Mexican restaurant. Some people laugh hearing that, as well you should, because trust me, THAT wasn’t Mexican food. It tasted fine, but whoever heard of putting shiritake mushrooms and cabbage in a taco?)
This is a picture of me and a professional potter. If you ever go to Japan, I suggest going out into the countryside and attending one of their farmer’s markets. You can find the most amazing things there! I bought a hand-made bowl from this man that looks gorgeous for the American equivalent of $25 dollars. Granted, he knocked the price down a little for me because he liked the fact I loved the bowl even though I’m a complete gaijin. But still, I bought a pottery bowl worth hundreds of dollars for $25! Farmers markets are the only way to shop over there.
Yes, believe it or not, they DO make a few kimonos my size. I certainly didn’t expect that. (I’m 5’10” for those of you that don’t know.) The lady there only had one that would fit, but at least I got to play traditional lady for a little while!
My editor and I battling it out – for once with swords instead of words! (Yes, my editor is as crazy as I am. How do you think we manage to work so well together?)