Monday, July 18, 2016

Jean and Tami's visit

This past week Jean V. and Tami V. came from Maryland for a visit.  It was a very fun week where we were able to go see and experience a lot of things.  Here is a few pictures of what we saw and did.  First day, we went to Mashiko, a pottery village.  This is a sake cup Jean and Tami purchased for me.
The second day, Jean and Tami spent around Kiyose and Higashi Kurume since I had my online class and a meeting at school as well as going to Haneda Airport to pick up the VanderHaaks.  No pictures from me this day.
The third day, we were up pretty early in the morning to catch our shinkansen to Kyoto.  We ended up touring Kyoto that day visiting four different places.
From the shinkansen

Heading up to Kiyozumi-dera Temple

Nijo Castle

Elizabeth and my room at the New Miyako Hotel
Dinner at Man in the Moon, an Irish Pub.
The fourth day, we took a train from Kyoto to Nara, to Nara Koen.  

Octogonal Hall near Kifukuji Temple
Looking up under the gate at Todaji Temple

Elizabeth and many of the lanterns at Kasuga Taisha

They had a dark room where the lanterns were lit.
The fifth day, we went to Lake Kawaguchiko near Mt. Fuji.  It was the lavender festival by the lake.  It was a cloudy day, so we were unable to view Mt. Fuji.  We did catch a bus up to the 5th station and walked around some.  I don't have any pictures of Mt. Fuji.
The day ended with a visit to a typical Japanese restaurant.
The sixth day took us to visiting Tokyo.  Our first stop was the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building.  On the 45th floor, they have windows that allow you to look at Tokyo and its vastness.
I live waaaaay out towards the center of the photo.  
We also went to the Harajuku area and walked down the Takeshita street which has a lot of stores.  We walked to Shibuya station and watched the crossing for multiple cycles.  Here is a link to a live camera.  Live Camera Shibuya Crossing
We also visited the Imperial Palace gardens.  We were pretty much only able to see the Edo Castle ruins in the gardens before they closed the gardens.  The castle ruins gave us a bit of a view of the area.

Panoramic view from the Edo Castle ruins.  (Scroll to get the full picture)

This and the above picture gives a 360 degree view. (Scroll to get the full picture)  
That evening we had dinner at Ruchira which is an Indian restaurant, run by friends in Higashi Kurume.  It was another delicious meal.

The seventh day, Tami, Jean and I went to Tokyo Union Church for worship and then they headed out to Narita to catch their train.
What a great week it was.  I realized I didn't take as many pictures as I thought.  It's all good and I was blessed to have friends come visit.  I am also grateful to Naoko, Elizabeth and Rie for helping me arrange parts of this week.  

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