Kyoto, Kimonos and Kids

Originally published on Blogger on 26th March 2015

A brilliant day in Kyoto. Sun was shining, pleasant temperature for walking, slept well in the comfy bed…. Well fed for breakfast, what more could you ask.

Well, we had breakfast, and Mya started playing with Chelsea, the very lovely 9 year old, whose parents own the guest house. I was quickly distracted in conversation with a young lady from Santa Cruz who is studying for ten months in Tokyo, as part of her scholarship. A lively conversation about differences and similarities between Australia, the States and Japan.

I eventually pried Mya away, (only to have her say ALL DAY….when can I go back and play with Chelsea) and headed into the old district. Higashiyama, which is where we are staying, is right in the middle of the old district. We walked to Kiyomizu, the “grand dame” of Kyoto’s temples. The very narrow streets were teeming with tourists. Mostly Japanese, in their hired kimono and styled hair. Taking photos in historical shrines. It makes for a great walk. You feel like you’ve been transported back in time. It is the “thing” here to dress up, with your man dressed up too, and wander around taking selfies in full historical garb!

After a couple of amazing temples, we found ourselves in a soba noodle restaurant for lunch. The restaurant had been open since 1926, and all the noodles were made onsite, in a tiny glassed in kitchen. Our lunch was yummy. After a bit of shopping, Finn and I were both having tummy troubles,so we  headed home, much to Mya’s delight. Chelsea saw her from across the street and they ran to each other, and started playing with a ball. I grabbed my book and a beer and sat enjoying some free time. Finn caught up on some manga downloads, and all was well with the world.

Eventually, Finn and I became hungry. After trying to entice Mya for dinner, she came and announced she had been invited to stay with Chelsea’s family for dinner. So, Magoo and I braved the cold for some truly amazing Indian food, and left Mya, who had made herself very at home, in their home!!

While at dinner we befriended an Indian family who live in Singapore. Their daughter was obsessed with Australian animals, and was very interested to hear about where we live. The father insisted on buying drinks, and when we left, I was a bit panicked that Mya had been left for an hour and a half.

I needn’t have worried. She was having a lovely old time, eating lollies, chips and ice cream, playing Wii and card games. I joined the card game when we got back, and it was a lot of fun. Lancy, the older daughter, she is nearly 13, was very funny. The girls had a great night.

So, I lay in bed tonight, realising that this really is the joy of travelling. To make connections with people who you can’t verbally communicate with. To laugh and understand that we really are all the same. What an extraordinary thing to be able to share with your kids.

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