Another email to folks in the USA:
Sent: Monday, June 03, 2013 1:40 AM
Subject: Pictures - Kyoto, June 1st
Howdy again from Kyoto!
Things are going well, and we're all settled in for Mikeís conference this week. (Itís the 19th semi-annual conference in
Solid State Ionics: http://www.ssi-19.net/ .) Heís there now,
since it is currently 3:45 pm on Monday, June 3rd in Kyoto. If you go to the web site, you'll see that Mikeís PhD advisor,
Ryan, is one of 8 finalists for the SSI Young Scientist Award.
...But this tale covers the end of our full-time sightseeing. I plan to condense conference week activities into a single message later this week.
When I last left off, we had arrived in Kyoto via Nozomi train on Saturday, June 1st. We then took a taxi to the Hotel Mume. The
Hotel Mume is an 8-room B&B (Bed & Breakfast) that I found on trip advisor. A+++ to them. It was awesome! The location was within
easy walking distance of tourist attractions, the room was excellent, the hotel was beautiful, the staff was friendly and the breakfast
was good, too! I took many pictures of the hotel because they, like the national treasure chicken people, are definitely on my list for
trip advisor reviews. I owe them that. I've attached 2 pictures from the hotel Ė one of the bar in the breakfast area, which gives you a
sense of the hotelís beauty, and one that the owner took of me in the lobby as I was getting ready to leave on Sunday.
Our walking tour started out in the direction of the nearest 7-11 (yes, there are 7-11ís in Japan, as well as a separate set of 7-11
bank offices) to get cash from the ATM. That led us through a neat little area with bridges over rivers running through the neighborhood
and cobblestone streets. After that, we turned west and went to the little main street area we had passed through on our taxi ride. We found
the "Roast Meat" restaurant Mike had seen - it turned out to be a Korean BBQ place, so we made reservations for dinner. Next door, was
a Pachinko parlor (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pachinko). We stepped
inside briefly - the din from the pachinko machines was incredible and the place was packed at 3pm in the afternoon. It kind of reminded me of
an Indian casino I had been to in New Mexico, just with Pachinko machines instead of slot machines.
So, we headed back along the main street (picture attached). At the other end of it was the Yasaka Jinja Shrine (pictures attached). Through
the main gate, there was a path that led through Maruyama Park. There were many more shrines along the path, and we eventually walked to the
area of the Chion-in Temple (pictures attached). As we were headed away from the temple grounds and back toward the hotel, we had quite a surprise!
Ryan and his wife, Lisa, were coming up the path. They had gotten to Kyoto (from China, where they had spent Ryanís sabbatical) a couple of hours
before that and had decided to take the same walk!
We enjoyed our dinner at the Korean BBQ restaurant that evening, and Mike even got to play a little Pachinko on the way back to the hotel. The
next day, Mike went off to a class at the Kyoto University (part of the conference activities) and I travel led to the Grand Prince Hotel with our
luggage. The Grand Prince is well outside of the touristy areas in Kyoto, but it is right across the street from the International Conference
Center. So, itís a convenient location for the week.
The next day, Mike left for a pre-conference class, and I packed things up at Hotel Mume. One last look at the ornate details of the Butterfly room:
I took a taxi to the Grand Prince hotel, which is literally across the street from the Kyoto International Conference Center.
Entering the hotel:
Advertisement for one of the hotel's restaurants:
Love the sign! This is a luggage transportation service, which we used to get some of our bags to our next stop.
Because the trains and other modes of transportation don't have much room for luggage, this company will guarantee next day
service to transport your bags around Japan for you. It was actually very reasonably priced!
I took a walk while waiting for Mike:
The International Conference Center:
Our room had a view of the conference center:
The courtyard of the hotel was set up for a wedding.
When they were done with class, Mike, Jason, and Dan did some sightseeing. These pictures are from the Kyoto Imperial Palace.
Muku Tree of Shimizudani Residence
This venerable tree is known as the Muku Tree of the Shimizudani Residence, after the house of a court noble
Shimizudani who lived nearby. The tree is some 300 years old - one of the few big muku trees found in this garden.
When the Kimmon Incident in 1864, near the tree, a Choshu samurai, Kijima Matabee who led a radical 'revere the Emperor
and expel the barbarians' ('Sonnojoi') group, is said to have died a heroic death beside this tree.
Last updated 13Jan2015