6th July 2012: 東京の雨(傘) {Japan, summer 2012}

On Friday I walked a lot but saw fewer things. I started with Yasukuni Jinja [靖国神社], which was preparing for a matsuri (festival), as you can see with all the lanterns. The lanterns had names in them and I have the chilling feeling that there’s one for each Japanese soldier who died in WWII – Yasukuni Shrine is dedicated to the fallen in that war.

A wall of yellow paper lamps being hung outdoors

A torii gate and a shrine behind it. The shrine is hanging the imperial banner. The building is made out of dark wood with golden decoration, and the roof is green-grey

The shrine visit was followed by a 30-minute stroll toward the Diet Building [国会, Kokkai] , which is something like the Parliament. Surprisingly enough, I got there without much trouble. I checked points with this because a) is cultural building b) is a barrier in X Clamp and c) is where the Shinigami in Yami no Matsuei are based. Risky picture in the middle of a crossing too! (pedestrian light was green, so not that impressive, to be honest.)

A severe looking building, closed off by fences and guarded by the police

As I was walking towards the Diet I found the National Theatre by chance. It was not in the plan, but i decided to check it out:

A shoebox-like building, in brown, with some reddish paper lanterns at the entrance

It started to rain and I was heading to Yoyogi Kōen [代々木公園], where I took a series of fun pictures through my (D****e’s) umbrella. It did not work as well as I hoped for though XD. Originally Yoyogi Park was conceived as a sacred forest around the Meiji Temple.

Trees through a transparent plastic umbrella

Thus, Meiji Jingu [明治神宮] was erected in the middle of the sacred forest of Yoyogi to honour the Meiji emperor and his wife. It is a very impressive complex, to be honest, and not even the bunch if tourists manage to break the spell of the place.

The entrance to Meiji Jingu, with a torii, and a small fountain to the left, and a lantern to the right

The main building of Meiji Jingu, in dark wood with a grey roof. A few people are approaching the building, all of them are carrying umbrellas

Finally I took a walk down Harajuku [原宿], where I, fortunately, did not buy anything. I swear, this country eats money way too fast…

A shopping street. The entrance is decorated with balloons strung together to look like a heart

Stay tuned for the tale if our trip to Nikko on Saturday and how we did not go to see the waterfall… the waterfall came to us. It was not the deluge… but almost. 大雨.

Title translation: Tokyo no Ame(gasa), it’s a pun on Tokyo’s rain and Tokyo’s umbrella. The Japnese word for rain is “ame”, and the word for umbrella is “amegasa”

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