Sunday, July 01, 2007

Last full day in Japan!

Hard to believe we're going home tomorrow!

We had a last breakfast in our favourite Kyoto cafe this morning, finished packing everything, then headed for the shuttle bus to Kyoto station. Charlie used our Japan Rail passes for the last time & got tickets on the 10:00 Hikari shinkansen to Tokyo.

We said fond farewells to Kyoto, & for the first half hour of the train trip I planned, in my mind, our return visit to Kyoto. There's still so much to see here! It's such a comfortable place to visit, too. Brendan & Charlie feel the same way. Brendan declared that we definitely have to come back :) And imagine how much better our japanese will be next time...

The train to Tokyo took just under 3 hours & the only difficulty was that they ran out of obento by lunch time. Brendan fired-up the laptop when he finally got bored with playing Uno with dad & watched some InuYasha. We picked up a couple obento when we got off the train, & luckily we didn't have to haul our very heavy bags terribly far to the taxi stand. Thank goodness! Brendan had an attack of the tics right as we got there, but in the hustle & bustle we couldn't do our usual- stop & set a kekkai- & you know what? He managed just fine. He was a little ticced-off at us, but he got over it very quickly. He said he used his fan to ward off the thoughts & we told him we were very proud that he was able to manage without us. We got to the hotel without a hitch & were in our room & eating obento before we knew it. Brendan really didn't want to explore right away, so we got hooked up to the internet & he played AQ for a bit, then climbed under the covers for a bit. We could see a garden with a koi pond right below our hotel window, & that motivated Brendan to go out & look around. When we got there, though, it looked as if there was a wedding going on in the garden (the most women in kimono we've seen on our whole visit to Japan :) so we decided to go back later. I had spotted a book store from the taxi & wanted to make a last look around for craft books & something for Brendan on the plane tomorrow, so I took off. I walked right by the Mizutengu shrine on my way there- something I thought Brendan would like to see. I had good luck at the bookstore- found a pokemon puzzles book & a magazine featuring our favourite Kamen Rider & Gekiranger shows (plus some fun omake- free gifts- inside) for Brendan & a kimono magazine & origami book for me. After I got back we just lounged around until dinner time. On the way to dinner we went back to see the garden:

There was a tea ceremony house in the garden, too, but the main attraction was the pond full of enormous koi...

We had dinner in one of the hotel restaurants (we ate in a restaurant!!) & Brendan was in an exceptionally good mood. We amused our waitress greatly by speaking japanese to her (she particularly loved hearing Brendan speak :) & really enjoyed our meal. We chatted about what we liked about Japan & how much we'll miss it. Brendan got the giggles often & his laughter was infectious :) After dinner, Charlie & Brendan walked over to the shrine. When they got back to our room Charlie got Brendan into the tub for a wash & soak. Now he's in bed & we're getting ready to do the same. We have a looooong trip back to the northeastern US tomorrow. Wish us luck!

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