12 March 2018

uncovering awesome japan

ordinary japan
Japan is a country that will delight and inspire in equal measure. No matter where you are, whether in one of the big cities of Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto or Sapporo or somewhere in the mountains, there will be something to entertain the inquisitive explorer.

We start the "Just Another Ordinary Week" delving into this incredible country and just some of the extraordinary things you will see.  


Temples 

japan

On the doorstep of Tokyo's main international airport - Narita, you'll find the city of...Narita! What may look an ordinary town with little to keep you occupied (which in the main it is - ordinary) in fact has a fantastic place you really should visit. Naritasan Shinshoji Temple


It's about to celebrate its 1080 birthday! (yes you read that right.) Among the modern buildings, you will find incredible treasures.  This is one such place. Narita is often a night stop-over for travellers heading to the airport, so if you have some spare time then seek this temple out. Head down a narrow street of wooden buildings, and you'll find it's entrance. Then spend an hour or two exploring the grounds and buildings. It makes an ordinary town; extraordinary.



Crossings

ordinary japan

Japan loves a railway crossing! Seriously, they are everywhere. Wherever you go, into work, to the shops, you'll need to cross at least one. You can't avoid the 'ging gang gong' sound as the barriers come down. You might even find yourself waiting for 10 minutes for the trains to clear! Some are single crossings, others could be anything up to eight separate tracks! Crazy as this may sound, I miss that sound, I even miss the wait! It was part of my daily life for 5 years. Wait for a local train to go through, then an express train, perhaps a special express...

Wonder what sound you miss from your travels?

Kawaii


The word Kawaii (cuteness / adorable), can be heard, if you listen carefully, everywhere. Sit on a train and listen to a group of people (any age I may add), chatting away, and you'd be guaranteed a 'kawaii' every three words or so! Kawaii is a culture within a culture, it's everywhere. 

Take this picture for, instance, this statue or figurine, is at the entrance to a kids park. Just an ordinary park with swings and slides but it probably makes you want to say 'kawaii'. It's probably not even a famous 'manga' character! See kawaii is everywhere. 


If you are lucky enough to head to Japan, look around you. Check out the temples, ride the trains, and above all seek out the kawaii. 

Arigato Japan - you are one fantastic country. 

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