Ice Cream Expo
4/23/2005, Kyoto, Kodai-ji temple and garden, being interviewed for TV
Akemi and I headed for Kyoto to walk around a Japanese garden. We ended up at Kodai-ji, in a well-travelled tourist area. Yeah, it was touristy. But, it was also quite wonderful. The area around had many old houses and generally had a very nice atmosphere. And, the garden, like every other garden I've been to in Japan, was a great pleasure to stroll around. I think I want to explore the Japanese gardens in Kyoto and around the area this summer. I very much enjoy strolling around these gardens and soaking in the atmosphere. It's really nice.
|Entering the Kodai-ji temple area.|
|This is in the garden. In the foreground is a rock garden with traditional mounds and raked patterns in the gravel. In the background is a bunch of nice trees.|
|We were told that the black mats you see are for reflecting light during night viewing. Apparently, you can come at night. They have lights to make everything pretty. Somehow, these shiny black mats play a part in all this.|
|We went inside the temple. It was all original. The paint was old and peeling, but it was very colorful and you could tell it was a magnificent place when it was in original condition. I have no doubt the decision not to renovate was for the sake of preservation. This place was generally well organized and well maintained.|
|Outside the gates of the temple area, we saw people enjoying the cherry blossoms. Cherry blossoms are gone in Aioi, but Kyoto is further north, so some varieties of cherry trees are still in bloom in Kyoto.|
After the garden and temple, we sat in a somewhat romantic spot at the side of a big river that runs through Kyoto. A man came up from the Mainichi TV station, a major network in Japan. He interviewed us about our visit. Why did we come? Do we think it's crowded? What is the ideal distance between us and the next couple or group of people sitting on the shore? 5 meters (≈15 feet), 10 meters (≈30 feet), or what? Why? Do we need privacy? Why? What were we talking about? (North Korea, politics, China, Japanese sweets, etc.) What were we eating? Do we kiss there? What level of affection do we engage in next to the river? What level of affection would we find acceptable for other people sitting with us? What would we do if someone was making out inappropriately near us? What sort of thing would we never do next to this river? Where would we do such things? .... The questions got gradually juicier and more personal. It was amusing. All of this in Japanese, of course. It was a bit of a Japanese test for me. Later, we went back and asked more questions. Apparently, it will be broadcast in about 3 weeks. The guy who interviewed us is actually a comedian. He was probably fishing for inappropriate answers or people who would get embarassed and do something funny. I'm not sure if we'll actually be on the show or not. But, it was an interesting experience nevertheless. And, they gave us a little souvenir pen. Akemi was quite tickled about the whole thing.
For dinner, I made ginger fried pork (buta-shougayaki) at Akemi's.
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