Japan was pretty cool. It was similar to Korea with two key differences for naive observers like myself: 1) The locals smile without provocation; and 2) No garbage all over the sidewalks. Sadly, I wasn’t there long enough to have a more informed opinion of the place — I’m sure their cultural idiosyncracies are equally frustrating to Westerners.
As for what we saw and did there, I’d like to say I don’t need to visit another Shinto shrine for the rest of my life, but I never took the opportunity to drop in a few yen and summon the spirits. I’ll have to go to at least one more time — I could really use some of that bibbed-fox-statue magic.
For me, the most thrilling part of Japan was riding the train to Kyoto from the airport and finding out that it looks exactly like the pixelated backgrounds in “River City Ransom,” a beloved video game from my childhood. (I looked everywhere, but I couldn’t find a book called “Dragon Feet.”)
Anyway, you didn’t come to hear my nostalgic quips about a Nintendo game. Click through for my photo album.
Please leave photo comments and questions here on the blog and I’ll try to get back at you. I’d post them all here as a slideshow but Google doesn’t currently support embedding into WordPress blogs without a ton of extra file management — I’m lazy enough about blogging as it is.