Oh I’m excited for so many reason!!! But I am getting ahead of myself.
Last weekend was our 6 year wedding anniversary. Last year I was too busy at work to do anything special for it, so it seems like we made up for it this year. We stayed in Uji, a town near Kyoto. If you have ever seen the back of the 10 yen coin, the building called Byodoin is located in Uji. It was really close to the hotel we stayed at and was beautiful, of course it would be since it’s a world heritage site. The hotel was by far the most luxurious place we have ever stayed in. There was even a private onsen tub in our room that had full widows that would open up so you have a view of the river… It was so relaxing, I wish we had the time and money to go back for another weekend. I will always have my memories at least ^_^ and the pictures. We were hoping that Kyoto would have more fall colors than it did, but we still had a good time. We even went to Nara to see two gardens we missed the first time and to feed a bunch of pushy deer. They just wouldn’t stop biting me on the butt.
That was last weekend. John wanted to go somewhere this weekend too, but as our official fall vacation is next week I told him no. Next week is kind of busy for me, it’s my schools bunkasai (culture festival). I’m excited for it, even if it is a 6 day work week. I hope I have enough energy to stay awake on Saturday when the students are preforming. There looks like there will be a lot more singing this year than last year, but the songs sound interesting. After the culture fest there will be an enkai, which are always fun. Thankfully this enkai is only about $40 bucks, last time it was close to $80… but the food was wonderful. I forgot that I was supposed to take John to Cafe Source to have delicious food! Well, his birthday is Thursday, maybe I’ll take him then.
Sunday morning, bright and early, John and I will start our week long vacation. We will definitely see fall colors this time. We are finally going to explore more of what is north of us. We are going to Kanazawa, which has one of the top three gardens in Japan… we really like the Japanese gardens. Then we are going to drive along a coastal road that is supposed to be beautiful (but unless you have a car, pretty hard to see as there are no modes of public transportation). Then we will take a train through the Kurobe Gorge, it was originally used to help build a dam in the middle of the mountains but has been converted into a sight seeing train. There are hot springs along the way, and I look forward to at least dipping my feet in a free foot bath. It’s supposed to be the peak time for fall colors, I can’t wait to take photos. After that we are heading to Nagano. There are many things we plan on seeing, but I don’t really feel like typing out my entire itinerary. We will be going to Matsumoto Castle, which is supposed to be amazing, and we will also be going to some falls in the mountain that look like it was taken right out of the game Legend of Zelda – Twilight Princess (the half moon shaped falls). We will be stopping in a post town before heading back to Takamatsu to see Ritsuin-koen in the fall (the all we need to so is see it in the winter and we have gone for every season).
We ended up cutting a day out of our vacation because the burger festival (which was canceled due to a typhoon) is now the Saturday and Sunday at the end of our vacation. So we are going to see Ritsuin-koen on Saturday morning and then drive to Mt. Daisen to eat some burgers with friends. It will be nice to have a full day at home after our vacation to do laundry and settle. Our vacations always are so jam packed with stuff, they can sometimes be stressful.
Speaking of stressful, our winter vacation is December 20th – January 12th. I can’t wait till we see New Zealand and Singapore. We are also editing our vacation plans a bit for after the new year. We were going to to to Thailand, Taiwan, and maybe South Korea during Golden week (in May), but there are a lot of festivals and also the best weather in February. So as long as my vacation is approved we will be visiting these countries early February, I hope I get to see a festival! We still plan on going to Okinawa during Spring break though, then we will have been to all of Japan’s main islands.
Well this has gotten to be a lot longer than I expected. But let it be known that I am excited for what’s coming! 😉