どうぞ：Here You Go
Hello again, still trying to catch up these blogs with my current time in Japan. They are really keeping me up late, but I continue to persevere! Day four of being Japan was quite eventful, just like all my other days! Being here in Japan has really been a dream come true. This is a wonderful country. Today is also the first day of school for both Bianca and myself.
Our day started really early, around 6AM for Bianca and around 6:30 for me. We had to leave the house around 7:15 in order to make it to school by 8:45. In order to get there we have a 15 minute walk through our neighborhood and a commercial zone to get to our local station, 十三 (or Jyuu-sou), and from there we have a 40 minute train ride to school. Once we get of the train, we have a hefty walk up a huge hill. Along the way however, we noticed a few entrances to shrines! Hopefully we will explore them in the near future. It’s interesting to see these shrines entrances littered around a residential area. They seem almost out of place!
When we got to school we were immediately met with boring orientation and testing. Not a great way to start the morning, but I suppose it had to be done. However, during our break Bianca and I explored our college, Kwansei Gakuin, and found a gorgeous pond. It’s surrounded by cherry blossoms which have yet to bloom, but the pond is serene and beautiful without them. In the center of the pond is a small island, and we managed to spot a turtle lurking around.
Orientation continued to be boring after our break, but once we were out we decided to check out some of the shrines we saw, or at least we tried. We looked at two shrines in the area, but neither of them were the one we passed on the way to school. However, they were incredibly beautiful. The shrines, although empty when we came, were very clearly well tended to. When walking I observed that the sand in the shrines had been meticulously raked. Behind the second shrine we visited, there was a burial site filled with tombstones. At the entrance of the site, three buddha (I assume it was buddha) statues stood draped in pink cloth. I’m unsure of the significance of this, but it was extremely eye-catching. It’s hard to pick a single picture to encompass the shrines, but I think this one does okay:
After exploring the shrines we rode back home and looked around the nearby covered walkway mall we saw earlier. We made our way back to our apartment before we went out to get some food. We had fun eating and enjoying ourselves, but when we left we ran into a very fun man. Again, this encounter was extremely impactful for me, and I don’t think it would do him justice to plop this story at the end of this blog, so you can read about our encounter with a wonderful street vendor here in another installment of “People of Osaka.”
After our encounter we went home, enjoyed the treat we got from the vendor, and went to sleep. We had an early morning the next day!