Tales From A Broad

My year of teaching English in Japan is up. Next mission: backpack Asia before going home to the U.S.A. Currently HOME!





Kyoto-Part I

According to my guidebook, "Kyoto is a perpetual embarrassment of riches."

Word.

Kyoto was our next destination and a first time for all of us. Even though we stayed there the longest out of any other place we went, we didn't come close to doing it justice. Yea, we saw the Golden Temple. We did a rickshaw ride through bamboo forests. Sure we went geisha hunting. We combed the streets of Gion. But, I get the impression, that unless you live there, you could spend your whole life discovering another national treasure here and there. After all, it was Japan's capital for more than 1,000 years.

We were on a mission to spot a geisha power walking in those clunky clogs, but had no luck. Instead, we hung around the river that runs through the middle of town. All along each side is a row of cafes with paper lanterns dotting the pathways. The massive windows are perfectly situated so that the people eating in the restaurants could look to the river and everyone on the streets can see the perfectly synchronized geishas serving them. The rest of the population was either roaming the narrow alleys or sitting on the sand right next to the river, lighting fireworks or having late night picnics. All the while, the Perez family was standing along the bridge, admiring the scene. This is what seems to set Kyoto apart from most other Japanese cities. It's charming. It's a big city and it's personable. It has everything that any other big city offers while staying comfortably livable.

Now I understand why almost all my students tell me Kyoto it's their favorite Japanese city because now it's mine too (tied with Fukouka).
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