Friday, May 16, 2008

A random bunch of pictures from Japan.

So you wanted to see a picture of Em dressed for the prom? Well, how about one of her dressed as a geisha?

She's the blue-eyed one. Upon viewing these pictures, her Japanese teacher said that she could tell right away which one was Em, as no Japanese woman would ever stand with her feet apart like this. (Raised by wolves she was.)

picture by Azuki's dad

The family that Em stayed with took both girls into Kyoto and paid for them to be costumed like geishas. When i saw this picture, i just couldn't believe it was my Em.


This woman has a table along the walkway where she cuts out your likeness from paper. I thought it was cool. And no, that's not me.


This picture shows that there are assholes everywhere. Although seeing Kanji characters carved into a tree amused me. It probably says "Yuki-n-Hatsumi 4 ever!"


This was taken in the bamboo forests. This does not do the place justice because it doesn't capture the beautiful light and the blueish colors of the bamboo.

And again.


This is a Japanese puppy we saw in a pet store. He costs around $1,600. Isn't he precious?


Some graffiti from the streets of Kobe. I thought it was kind of eerie and sad and beautiful.


In Kyoto, the Mister and i wandered away from the main tourist area and ended up walking along a river. Lots of garbage and some pretty birds. This is an egret.


A close up of some dried mushrooms at a food store.


Some pickled bits of something sold in bags. Loved the colors. Why did blogger decide to post this picture sideways?


A man on a bicycle looking in the window at the meat store.


A machine that automated the making of little sweet cakes. It was fascinating to me. I could have watched it for hours. At the end of the process a final motion stamps a picture on top of the cake.

And they were tasty too.


At a park in Otsu. As you can see, it was cherry blossom season. Everyone spreads out those blue plastic tarps to sit on. Not a blanket in sight.


I thought this was interesting. I can't tell if it's a homeless encampment or what. This is up the lake from the park in the above picture. Again, we were wandering far from the tourist area. Note the chickens and the heron fishing in the foreground. The water was full of garbage and turtles and frogs.

This was just a collection of pictures for which i couldn't/didn't feel like coming up with a theme, but i wanted to show them to you anyway.


100 Thoughts of Love said...

beautiful geishas! And the bamboo forest os awesome.....what kind of dog is that?

luckyzmom said...

OMGosh! I just wrote a lovely, very long comment and erased it reaching for the mouse to publish it.

I individually commented positively on every picture you posted. Now I will just say I loved each and every one.

Vanessa said...

Such an amazing, insightful trip!

Heather said...

that bamboo is incredible! thanks for sharing your pics I'm loving them!

Gina said...

Wow - you got some great photos. They make me want to go there.

crazymumma said...

I came back to see Em as Geisha Girl.

But all these other photos are incredible. The bamboo walkway is startlingly beautiful and teh woman cutting likenesses out of paper? Way cool.

Stucco said...

Mmmmm... Meat store...

meno said...

pat, i think it's some kind of fox terrier. I so wanted to buy him.

luckyzmom, ooooh, i HATE it when that happens! I would have loved to read your comments.

vanessa, it was amazing. You should go sometime.

h.e., it was so beautiful. The light....mmmmm

gina, thank you, and you should.

crazymumma, there were so many cool things. I am just happy to share them.

stucco, Oh you would have LOVED this meat. It was Kobe beef. I have never seen such marbling in my life. Nom nom nom.

Brad said...

I've loved your Japan pics - I was just trying to find you earlier in past post/comments- I'd put you in my google reader but couldn't find your blog addy. Your post saved me.

That's it. dang it! I'm putting you on my sidebar - Take that ;)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! Now I want to forgo the natives and plant bamboo down the drive! And those mushrooms are amazing, I love the detail you were able to capture. Thanks for sharing.

Unknown said...

See, you take pictures of food. Lots of them. For this I love you.

flutter said...

Em is beautiful.

That bamboo forest stole my breath

Mrs. Chili said...

Theme-schmeme. I loved this. Thanks!

ms chica said...

If Em had chosen to dress like a geisha for prom, that would have been pretty cool.

It took me a second look to see the people standing next to the bamboo. Wow. Is the bamboo 9"-12" in diameter?

Isn't it interesting when you spot street signs or graffiti from another culture that doesn't share your alphabet, that it always seems like a form of higher art than say cheap marketing ploys and vandalism?

Gordo said...

"Away from the tourist areas" is the only way to get a shot at seeing what's really going on. I'm constantly amazed by people who travel to a resort and never leave it the entire time they're there. Ecch.

Bamboo is simply amazing stuff. We're thinking of planting a cold-hardy variety at the cottage. :-)

Anonymous said...

I almost feel like I went with you. Have enjoyed this series of posts and photos very much.

And that dog up there is just about the cutest thing I've ever seen in my whole entire life.

Woman in a Window said...

Appreciated all those photos but especially the bamboo trees...and if it was more than what was shown here it must have been overwhelming to walk there.

meno said...

brad, NO not the SIDEBAR! Next you'll bring out the comfortable chair.

sally, i love the macro function on my point and shoot. I was less that an inch from the mushrooms.

nancy, oh hell yes, look at those colors!

flutter, my daughter, all decked out as a paid compainion. Makes the heart proud.

mrs. chili, you are welcome. :)

ms. chica, yes, the bamboo are huge. It was really a sight worth seeing. It's hard for me to view good grafitti as vandalism. Does that make me a hypocrite?

gordo, i find those kind of wanderings so much better than what i'm "supposed" to be doing. We did a little of that too, but i can only take so (very little) much shopping.

jennifer, i am glad you have/are enjoying them, because i have more. I know about the dog. Wook at his widdle sad face.

womaninawindow, it was the smell, the light, the quiet. Mmmmm. The picture just doesn't capture all that.

Lynn said...

Who would think that a few inches (the feet apart) would make such a difference? Em certainly made a beautiful geisha...did that help her feel more comfortable getting dressed up for the prom?

Loved the rest of your photos from Japan.

tt said...'ve shown some amazing pictures. And Em as a Geisha...beautiful!!!!!..even if her feet were apart...she is an 'American' Geisha afterall :)
More please!

Anonymous said...

Gorgeous! Thanks for sharing these. And what fun for Em to get costumed as a geisha, no?

Liv said...

beautiful. em will treasure this trip always. i know it.

Sienna said...

These are just beautiful pictures, I love your perception of stuff!

The girls look absolutely gorgeous, I gotta say it looks fun dressing up in the costume and makeup.

Love the bamboo forest, just love the feel of the place, the puppy tugs at my heart, just gorgeous photos, love the off-the-beaten-track stuff.

fiwa said...

Em looks gorgeous - that must have been fun to do.

I have loved looking at all of the pictures. The lady making the faces out of paper was the neatest. What a talent.

Cheesy said...

"Raised by wolves she was" HAHAHAHA
Lovely tho!

Gurlie-loved loved LOVED the first bamboo shot-breathless

Yep cute pup but sorry not $1600 cute!

meno said...

lynn, I think she was WAY more uncomfortable with the geisha thing than with the prom. More makeup too!

tt, stayed tuned...

franki, i think she had fun but in an "oh my god, this is so weird" way.

liv, i think she will.

pam, thank you, i enjoy your pictures as well. A different world than my ususal.

fiwa, The coolest thing was that the paper faces actually LOOKED like the people she was looking at.

cheesy, ARRROOOO! No puppy is as cute as the ones at the pound.

QT said...

All these pictures are great, the bamboo is crazy beautiful - as is Em all painted up. What a cool trip~

AC said...

The bamboo forest is fantastic. I'd love a print of that. Its like a new magical place has taken root in my imagination.

Say It said...

very cool. It seems your awfully good with that camera. Isn't it amazing? No matter where you go the living conditions right outside of the tourist area are terrible.

And I can't imaging being so good with paper an scissors to cut out likenesses of anything, not even snowflakes.

Dianne said...

the photos are stunning. I especially liked the bamboo trees and the haunting graffiti and the man looking into the meat store window.

and Em looked beautiful.

sorry I've been gone so long. I lost a few bookmarks and was having a brain fart about getting them all back. I finally found you again from a comment you left on an old post.

Happy travels!!

meno said...

qt, home from Vegas? I'll have to check that out. Oh, and thank you.

ac, send me an e-mail with your address and i'll print you up an 8 by 10, or smaller or bigger. The Mister has a fancy photo printer.

say it, thanks, but i think if you take enough pictures, you are bound to get a few good ones. I can do snowflakes, but that's about it.

dianne, no worries. And thank you, i like those pictures also. the grafitti was compelling.

sari said...

Oh I love the picture of Em! And the graffiti, very cool.

They probably use tarps because I will tell you, blankets just collect leaves and dirt and crud, and that is not appealing in any way (and forgive me if someone else said that, I did not read the comments).

Mona Buonanotte said...

It's all so damn beautiful! Uh, except the homeless camp, that looks eerily like America. What did those little cakes taste like?

peevish said...

Thanks for posting them. It is good to see the imperfect parts as well as the postcard-like ones. The bamboo forest looks magical. And that puppy!

Anonymous said...

Striking. And beautiful, hauntingly so. Kanji carved into trees. Egrets. Gods, that beautiful serene blue bamboo. Thank you for sharing these slices with us.

Anonymous said...

Wow to the geisha picture.

Gasp at the bamboo forest.

That pup looks just like my Wire Fox Chelsea when she was a pup.

Tink said...

I'm pretty sure I could never tire of your stories and pictures. These are all so interesting and cool. I LOVE the one of Em dressed like a geisha.

peevish said...

Oh, and the graffiti, and the woman cutting paper portraits. Wonderful!

Anonymous said...

Great pics and commentary (this and the prior post)…it put a smile on my face…your ancestors should be proud…

egan said...

Homeless people in Japan? You're opening my eyes to heaps of stuff with this Japan series.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Gorgeous pictures! The bamboo forest is amazing, and Em is a beautiful geisha, despite her American tomboy stance.

Please post more. More. MORE!!!

Anonymous said...

That bamboo is amazing, it's so beautiful. It must have felt like another world.