I am sooo behind!! Days of no blogging, depriving hundreds of people of my Japan experience – well mostly my mother. But still. I’ve been playing catch-up a lot these days – with my blog, my friends, with my adult self. If anything, this trip has certainly reminded me that my inner child still exists – carefree and playful as ever before. I thought I had lost it, having grown up soo quickly (in my opinion) in the last two years or so. Somewhere along the way, I had suppressed and packed away the tomboy who use to run through muddy fields in long white gowns to slug the boys [you know who you are], the rash girl who’s mind and mouth were never compromised by silly things like social propriety, the girly girl who ooh-ed and aw-ed over Hello Kitty and gelly roll pens while passing notes in class. Yes, sometimes I forget I was ever that person. Sometimes, I forget how my childhood friendships even formed, because I am (we all are) such a different person now. And it is only when the inner child is liberated that you remember. And it is like a familiar, old companion you wear – a bit of a snug fit but still soo comforting nonetheless.
A few days ago, we went to Kyoto, the old capital and a rich city preserved in heritage and history untouched by war. Essentially put on the map by Memoirs of a Geisha, Kyoto is dotted with tons of beautiful gardens, shrines and temples, and in our 2 day trip there, we tried to hit all the major sites.
While in Kyoto, I was introduced to a number of unique Japanese sweets that I did not see in Tokyo – Mochi type of triangles with sweet fillings; green tea and sesame dough balls skewered on sticks and slathered in black sesame sauce; green jelly things sprinkled with grounded sweet and salty peanut. I can’t name half of it, and sadly don’t have the pictures to do them justice. BUT I do know that these are Kyoto-unique, and that they are absolutely delicious. The vendors do a good job of giving out samples, and I am ever ready to put my test tasting skills to use.
In addition, I also OD-ed on green tea while in Kyoto. As if the tea drink was not enough, I had Green Tea Mochi, Green Tea Cream Puffs, Green Tea Shaved Ice and Red Bean. Oh gosh. It was nauseating, but soo cooling and refreshing. I will attempt to recreate some of these babies the second I get home to the states.
Kyoto was an amazing break from the rush of the Tokyo city life (it’s maddening!). Lush greenery, fewer people and cars, I felt so much more at home and at ease. The day after we came back from Kyoto, we immediately checked in for some adrenaline rehab at the famous DisneySea Theme Park – and it was such a different Disney experience!! The water-themed park was home to 5 different ports (Arabian, Mediterranean, NYC, futuristic Discovery, etc) and a variety of rides. Besides the rides, the decor, the fact that both Harrison Ford and Mickey Mouse speak Japanese, the best part was all the LIVE SHOWS! As in, there were live musicals like you would see on Broadway; street bands as you would see in any large city; acrobats and dancers like on a Cirque du Soleil show. It was an incredible experience. The DisneySea focuses A LOT on these shows – full of talent, rich in detail and innovation.
And to top it off, the night BraviSEAmo show was a mechanical performance in water of how the powerful Spirit of Fire falls in love with the elegant Spirit of Water. It was quite magical, and showcased the best of Japanese artistry and ingenuity. I highly recommend it unless you are a thrill seeker, in which case, DisneySea would be too mild for your taste. But it is still sooo worth the 58Yen or whatever I paid.
This trip has drastically drained my bank account, sigh – what to do? My inner child says, who cares – you only live once right? 😉