Last Full Day in Kyoto
Our time in Kyoto is nearing an end. Today is our last full day. It has been a wonderful experience getting to know this beautiful city even more. As Dick mentioned, our comfort level this year is much higher than it was in 2012; we feel like we can navigate the subway, the trains (a little less so), and even the buses. Everyone has been so nice to us. Dick is already starting to talk about visiting again. Kyoto is like Oaxaca times 10 or 20: the cultural center of its country, but even older and bigger than Oaxaca. We just discovered an English language publication that showed how many local festivals we could have gone to had we known they existed (like a big kite festival!) They don't have notices about these in the tourist office or on online tourist websites.
Now we move on to uncharted territory: Hiroshima Prefecture, where both my parents' families came from. The good news is that Kyoto's going to have a small heat wave starting today: highs in the upper 80's. Onomichi, our next destination, should be cooler: high of around 80.
We're way behind in posting photos. Hopefully there will be some time to catch up. Here are a few photos from the Heian Shrine garden.
Don't know why this antique railroad car is in the garden. The sign was in kanji.
The garden has bigger ponds than the ones we've seen on this trip.
A light mist was falling when we visited; perfect for keeping the crowds down.Also we missed most of the irises and cherry trees' blooming, but then there would have been a gazillion people there.
Best water lilies we've seen on the trip.
The other thing the garden is famous for is its covered bridge. See the gray heron?
We didn't take many photos of the shrine itself since we'd been there in 2012. But we did get these photos of what Japanese kids do when they have a photo op! Ladies first! Then the guys! And finally, a group leap!