japan, finally the last one… {part 7}

let’s start this post with just a little bit of wandering around a food market.

IMG_1760_food street

of course we must start with the department stores. they are just gorgeous. think of the makeup counters in our department stores- how sparkly and shiny everything is- now multiply that times 20 and make it food. amazing: IMG_1722_department store

right before we step into the oldest food market in kyoto we stopped by a little stand that had a lot of cherry-blossom-flavored food… because of course you need to celebrate the season with food that’s pink!  IMG_1731_streetfood

and we may have found the donut stand… IMG_1732_st food mom and bec

good thing we did that before we walked through the market though… the food in the market was…mostly…unappetizing…

IMG_1729_street food

things had eyeballs still…
IMG_1744_st fd

sashimi: IMG_1735_st fd sashimi a beer stand:
IMG_1739_st fd

plastic sushi anyone? IMG_1742_st fd

fish flakes: {let me tell you, i actually tried some…these are GROSS} IMG_1750_fish flakes octopus on a stick? yes. they walk around chewing on these like they are chewing on a corndog at a ballgame.

oh. my. goodness.gracious. these grossed me out! IMG_1756_octopus

piles and piles of octopus on  a stick:  IMG_1764_octopus

some sort of sea creature: IMG_1757_st fd

look at those crabs: IMG_1759_stfd

it was so overwhelming taking everything in: IMG_1769_street

but on the way back to the hotel that evening we followed some geisha…

IMG_1778_geisha

yes. i was that creepy person taking pictures of some stranger. HA. but at least i didn’t run up ahead of them and turn around and try to take a fast picture of them in front… i’m not even going to mention who did that…*cough*dad*cough*

hee hee.

alright, the next day we found the Fushi Inari Shrine and gates.  the artist in me really loved this place. my family got a little overwhelmed with all the orange… i’ll let you decide if you like it or hate it.  IMG_1781_bec and mom

i have no idea what the difference was between all the temples.  IMG_1784_red shrine

but there were a lot of guard dogs hanging around: IMG_1785_red temple dog

on one side was a happy dog and one side was an angry dog usually.  IMG_1793_red dog i actually love this map. we only made it about 30 minutes up the hill. apparently it takes 1.5 hours to get to the top!  IMG_1786_red shrine map

there were different areas with large gates and small gates: IMG_1792_orange gates

my engineer Father really didn’t like that there was no uniformity in the columns. that cracked me up! but it was a little crazy that they built them right next to each other and they would be just a slight variation of its neighbor. IMG_1797_pathway and we were trying to decide if the writing was advertising or not.

{can you tell some people in our group were rather cynical that day? lol} IMG_1803_orange gate

yay! orange gates! IMG_1815_fushiinari gates

and another dog: IMG_1817_red dog

my mother being adorable: IMG_1820_cute mom

they had a LOT of beautiful lanterns around the grounds. they were all different too. i loved it: IMG_1830_red lantern

everyone was kind of sick of orange by the time we made it back down the hill.

this is back at the beginning:  IMG_1835_red temple

and, my stalker-ish-tendancies come out again… how CUTE is she?! adorbs as my little sis would say: IMG_1839_little girl

the cherry blossoms were really pretty that day. IMG_1841_lantern

as this was our last full day in Kyoto we decided to finally try japanese style tea. “matcha tea” is a green powder that they whisk in to the hot water: IMG_1870_matcha tea

as a tea lover, i decided it wasn’t really my favorite. i loved the colors and texture of that cup though!
IMG_1873_matcha tea

after our lunch we went for a walk along the famous “philosopher’s path” to see the cherry blossoms.    IMG_1884_bec and mom

us… and the rest of Japan.

it was a little disappointing that this is one of the “most beautiful” places in Japan and it was just a little path along a ditch-that must have been a river in it’s day. it was gorgeous to walk amoung all the trees, but it just wasn’t as impressive as we were expecting. it probably would have been a little better environment had it not been a sunny sunday afternoon with everyone else in all of Kyoto IMG_1893_philosophers path but we saw some pretty houses along the way. IMG_1908_kyoto

and a random wood temple. i actually think this was the gate and the temple was up the hill, but we didn’t see it. IMG_1916_kyoto wood gate

then… SHUT UP. we found Colorado.

some people were pretty excited about it:  IMG_1922_colorado in kyoto!

we actually found another family from Colorado standing in front of the sign! it was hilarious! the wife of that family actually walked in and tried to explain that she was from Colorado but they just looked at her confused. hahah. so, it’s our little joke, i guess. Becca felt like she was home.

…kinda…

the next day we began our LONG journey home:
IMG_1929_kyoto train station

the train station actually had a sun deck which was so nice on a sunny day where we had to wait for a few hours: IMG_1947_bamboo

momma misses her Becca so much. IMG_1949_becca and mom

and so do i.

{please note, this picture was take 12 of like 20…the first 11 were of Becca trying to lick my ear… let’s just say when we’re together we go a little overboard with the teasing. lol}  IMG_1951_becca and me

this was the train station. i was really impressed with the space! IMG_1954_train station

and a last 3-person family photo.  IMG_1971_family at train station

and a last japanese lunch:
2013-04-01 02.10.01

tempura bar! so fun! 2013-04-01 02.11.14

and it was a delicious last meal:
2013-04-01 02.12.47

then we began the trip home:

a 2 hour train ride + 2 hr wait at airport + 9 hr flight to San Fran + 3 hr flight to Denver +1 hour drive to the Springs (we spent the night in Colorado Springs)  then i got up for the rest of my 3 hr flights to Chicago + 2 hr layover + 3 hr flight to Boston…and home. oh my goodness longest travel day ever.

but oh such a great adventure! thanks for sticking with me these last few weeks as i’ve been so busy and it’s been so hard to get all the pictures organized!

if you’d like to see my other japan posts please click here: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6

thanks, friends!

xo-kimberly renee

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