Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Kamakura and the Ghibli Museum

Finally made it down to Kamakura. I'd been trying to get down there for a while. It's less than 2 hours away on the train, but plans just kept falling through. Anyways, I went there finally.

Kamakura's got temples. Despite Japan being full of temples and shrines, I actually went to one that I consider the best one I've been to so far. Hase is on a hill, looking out over the Pacific Ocean. Nice garden, budha statue, blah blah, but check out some of the weird stuff.

This is normal. You buy these little wood things and write wishes and what not on them. They are at every temple. But I found this gem...

I had my Japanese friend translate, it was just a couple teenagers saying they hope they will be together 4-evar type of crap. But what the fuck is up with the cat showing it's little butthole? My Japanese friend didn't find this weird.

There were thousands of tiny statues in this one area. It was really surreal. Some of them had little hats on. How cute! Oh wait, each statue represents a miscarriage.

If the miscarriage statues got you a little down, don't go up the steps! There are larger statues for kids who died. This one, the kid was in a car accident.

Back on the positive, there was some more weird shit here, like a massive thing filled with money that you have to turn in circles, a cave that was only 4 feet high, and lots of hawks flying around. For sure hit this one up if you have a chance. Bring a picnic and there are tables overlooking the ocean.

The sunset out at the beach.

There's a big ol Daibutsu in Kamakura that is famous I guess. It was nothing like the random 100 foot tall ones I found in the midle of nowhere, but it's more famous, so it must be better. Better omiyage too I think.

These photos are the first HDR photos I attempted. HDR is a fancy computer type thing with digital photos and what not. You take lots of photos at different exposures blah blah blah you can make some crazy shots. I'll spend a day figuring this out sooner or later. Just search for HDR on flckr and you'll see what I'm talking about.

We also saw some horse festival. We were walking and saw a massive crowd waiting. We asked and it was for horseback archery or something. So we waited to check it out. And waited. And waited.

The dude on horseback rode and fired an arrow. No, not at the guy holding the target. So, yeah, we waited 2 hours to see some horses running around. I got to play around with my camera's manual settings, but only had a couple decent artsy type shots. I like this one!

Ghibli Museum

I went to the Ghibli Museum on monday with Branda. We both had interviews and this place was nearby. This is dedicated to all those Hayao Myazaki animes like Princess Mononoke and My Neighbor Totoro. It was all surreal inside. All sorts of strange staircases, rooms all done up with animation stuff, and cuteness in every corner. Sorry! No photos allowed inside!

So you are supposed to reserve tickets to get in months in advance. But if you are a silly foreigner, you just go across the street to the convini store and they will sell you some. Hooray for my skin color!

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