Tuesday, June 27, 2017

June 26 - Day 10 B

this is Eddie Sheets, class of 2019. Today I said goodbye to my host family, including my host mother, father, three year old brother, aunt and uncle. It is strange how after only a week with them, I had become part of a family of people who had just a short time ago been complete strangers. After promises to keep in touch and more than a few tears from some of us, we went North to Kyoto, where we dropped off all unnecessary luggage. I knew that we were staying somewhere nice when I saw someone carving a giant ice sculpture in the lobby.

We planned on going to a temple called Sanjuusangendo. What was supposed to be a short bus ride turned into a twenty minute walk through Kyoto when we got confused by the bus stop, then missed our bus. It was very hot and humid, but interesting to see the non tourist areas of the city.

We learned about Sanjuusangendo in class, so it was really cool to see it in person. The main hall of the temple is lined with something like a thousand person sized statues of the Buddhist deity Kannon, interspersed with the twenty guardian deities of Buddhist religion. It was awe inspiring, considering the age and the number of statues.

We then went to Kiyomizudera, another Buddhist temple. The way to Kiyomizu involved climbing up a not too steep mountain,  but the view was beautiful. Unfortunately, the main temple was under renovations, but it was still something to see. On the way back down from Kiyomizu, we walked along a street that wa packed with both people and stores. You could buy all kinds of things I,possible to find in America, but I have to say my favorite was the sweets and ice cream. I would love to stay in Japan just because the desserts are so much better...

From Kiyomizu we stopped at a small park to rest after our hike, and then went to dinner. Balsomico-Sensei took us to an all you can eat shabu shabu restaurant. Shabu shabu is a little hard to work plain, but essentially high quality meat and vegetables cooked in a broth at the table. I think it would be fair to say that I ate my money's worth of the food. I don't think many people back home would want to try it in the States, but everyone should.

Finally, we made it back to the hotel where we were able to get into our rooms, and find they were better than we originally thought they'd be! I can't believe we have only two more days here!

 At Kiyomizu 

Kiley doing the love walk at Kiyomizu. If you can get from one end to the other with your eyes closed, it means your love will come true. If someone helps you get from one end to the other, that means they'll help you find your true love.

At Yasaka Jinja, close to Kiyomizu

Shabu shabu. The first serving they cook for you, after that you cook for yourself

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