My parents are visiting this week so it has been sightseeing central. I have plenty to catch up on but since they are still here will content myself with a small peek at what we did yesterday. My friend Noriko very kindly took us off for the day to Kamakura which is a seaside town about three times the size of what I would think of as a UK seaside town since everything in Japan is either on a much larger or much smaller scale than anything in the UK. It has many shrines as well as lots of craft shops, a large sandy beach for surfing, views of Mt Fuji (only on clear days - alas not when we were there) and restaurants a plenty. It is an hour by train from Tokyo and is definitely worth a visit. Having grown up by the sea it was lovely to go back, even just for a few hours.
The Buddha himself dates from 1252 and his story is told on a wall plaque.
I felt rather humbled by such an amazing...I'm not sure of the right word. Creation? Symbol? Icon? He seems too present to be just called a statue or something inanimate.
The rest of our day in Kamakura was spent in beautiful but rather less epic pursuits. It did however, in a way that brought me back to earth and reminded me of my true calling in life, bring me my first "Beware of the Cat" sign.
Sadly they go back to the UK at the weekend so normal blogging will resume after that. Today Rob has gone off to the Railway Museum with Mr Pooch so Mum and I are going craft shopping in Asakusabashi and Nippori and then on to Harajuku for Tokyo's biggest 100 Yen shop. I took her to a smaller one in Shinjuku on Monday and she caught the bug! They really are rather wonderful places, especially when your previous experience of such things has been the UK's Poundland. There is just no comparison and I have to keep reminding myself that all the craft bits I find in them are only 65p a pop.