Congratulations are in order for my baby sister, Marbs, who is one of three singles players on her high school tennis team with an undefeated record. 19-0, and this is only her second year playing the sport! (Like, seriously. She only picked up a racket last year.)
Her photo was in the paper today, and I’d link to it if I wasn’t anonymous. But she looks so fierce. I’m proud of you, kiddo.
With the AP classes, orchestra, college and scholarship applications and job, I don’t know how you have the time to do it all. Must be something in that NorCal water . . .
In other news, I posted more Japan pics on Flickr.
Can’t believe I was there just three months ago–it seems much more time has passed. I miss Kyoto.
Click on the picture above for more shots of Honen-In, Otoyo Shrine and a sad little tempura dish that set me back six bucks.
The latest batch (as well as the first, of Ginkaku-ji) were taken during my first day of sightseeing in Japan. I devoted that time to Tetsugaku-no-Michi, “The Philosopher’s Path.” The road, sprinkled with delightful little cafes and shrines, wasn’t too crowded–but I followed a few tourists when I got lost. And I did get lost.
Back then it was hot. I wasn’t dying like the other foreigners, yet it was hot enough that I lost five pounds of water weight by the end of my trip, in spite of a diet of waffles and green tea ice cream.
I spent the majority of the day on foot, and by nightfall I had blisters on my feet. My bright pink purse was heavy with my Lonely Planet guide, Japanese phrasebook, camera (with four spare batteries, and I still ran out of juice in the middle of the day), paper fan, water and five pounds of coins I wouldn’t be able to convert to Won upon my return to Korea.
I prefer the tiny shrines like Otoyo, because there are less visitors, which means I have more time to just sit down and take too many half-assed pictures. Anyway, as usual my pictures don’t do the place any justice. It was so peaceful, so unexpectedly quiet for a hot tourist spot like Kyoto.
Unfortunately, there’s a lot of stuff I don’t know about Japan and their temples, so if you want to add notes or define stuff in my photos, feel free to do so.
On this particular night I downed sake shots (straight out of a carton!) with awkward Germans, a dueling Swede couple, a short-haired French girl I totally crushed on, some Canadians who were also teaching in Korea, and two Catalan siblings I’ll call “Lucy” and “Linus.”
I hit it off with Lucy and Linus right away, fascinated by how many languages they spoke with ease. Between them, they knew Catalan, Spanish, English, German, Latin, Japanese, Italian and I’m sure they were fluent in more.
I was starstruck, because I don’t even know Tagalog.
“In Spain, when we have drinks, we say chin-chin,” Lucy explained after pouring my third drink. “But when we said this in Tokyo, our Japanese friends were so embarrassed. Chin-chin means penis in Japanese! So for our first week here, we were yelling penis in bars, with no idea why people were staring so hard.”
“I loooooove you,” I slurred. “I never had Spanish friends before. Will you be my friends?”
“Yes, but you must know we are Catalan, and not Spanish,” Luis pointed out.
“Uh-huh whatever. Chin-chin!”