Natalie Goes to Japan

40 year old very married blonde woman having a midlife crisis who heads to Japan alone to follow her dreams. Be careful what you wish for ... you just may get it.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Fukuroi-ing Around

My students Shosei and Yukia took me to the nearby town of Fukuroi to visit a couple of temples. Hattasan is known for it's lovely location and the flights of steps you have to climb to get there. Oh, it's not unbearable or anything, but we did get a little breathless, and my thighs are a little sore. But it was nice. It has been bitterly cold and windy here the last few days, so I had bundled up and was prepared to freeze. It was cold, but refreshing cold not miserable cold. And the sun made it very beautiful. We washed our hands in the freezing cold water to cleanse ourselves before praying, bathed ourselves in incense smoke, threw 5 yen in the money boxes, prayed, and bought fortunes. I got a very rare fortune. Unfortunately is was a bad fortune. But they were still really impressed because it was so rare. The fortune said I had to be very careful. "Of what?" I asked. Oh, of everything. Great. But it's so rare and cool. Yippee. We stopped and ate dango. Basically that's chewy, tasteless rice paste on a small skewer, spread with sweet been goo on one side. Not bad actually. We then visited a much less popular temple on the other side of town called Yusanji. It was a very quirky, slightly run down temple complex that meanders up a hill. I quite liked it. And it was so different from the highly polished anticeptic Hattasan. There was a big tea kettle in a large wooden cage, and if you tossed a coin into the pot it will bring you good luck. Shosei and Yukia both missed, but my toss was a thing of beauty. Nothing but net, so to speak. So take that rare, bad fortune. I erased you with the toss of a coin. Nothing but happiness and sunshine...until I visit another temple and get another bad fortune.


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