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Japan, Pt. III - Tea

We had tea ceremony at Obachan's house.  Obachan is like saying 'Auntie.'  She is the leader of the tea ceremony study group, which has been meeting for many years.  The tea ceremony is an art and a way of being, and I was very excited to experience it. Obachan looking at the chopsticks.  There were hydrangea mochis in the lacquer boxes.  That is my knee at the bottom of the picture.  A sand pit about a foot deep was recessed into the tatami mats and a charcoal fire burned inside, heating water for tea. Mixing the first tea. Drinking the tea.  The first cup of tea is thick like porridge and since I was the guest of honor I went...

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I went to Japan, to Tokyo and Kyoto.  It was unbelievable.  Everything there is opposite.  They walk and drive on the other side of the street.  Nothing will ever be the same for me now that I have been there.  Enough with the platitudes here are the photographs. This is the subway in Kyoto.  The subway is tidy and orderly.  I loved the green velour benches and the plastic rings hanging everywhere. As a New Yorker, my immediate thought was "How do they get people not to piss all over everything?"  It's cultural, is the answer. This is in Kyoto, at the Ginkaku-ji, "The Temple Of The Silver Pavilion," in the pouring rain.  There is a very mystical garden with...

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