Hida Takayama

After Tokyo we traveled to Takayama, a small city in the Japanese Alps, also called Hida Takayama after the region where it is located. In picking this place, I was motivated by the desire to spend part of the vacation where it wasn’t quite so hot. In this, I was misguided. Takayama does have cold and snowy winters, but the summers are almost as hot as those in Tokyo.

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The Joy of Japanese Trains

During out trip we traveled from Tokyo to Takayama (a small city in the Japanese Alps), to Kyoto and back to Tokyo. We did this via Japanese Railways, and the travel itself was a pleasure.

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What to Eat in Japan if You Don’t Like Sushi

Actually, in Japan I discovered that I do like sushi. Living in Chicago, a place where “fresh fish” often means “thawed fish”, I have stayed away from sushi throughout my adult life.

However, towards the end of our trip Judy’s clients took us out for a feast that included many kinds of sushi. I knew it would be rude not to dig into all the dishes on offer, and was very pleasantly surprised with the result. Up until that point, though, we avoided sushi. But we did not go hungry. Here are some of the delicious foods we found.

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Hama Rikyu

Hama Rikyu is a large green space located where the Sumida River flows into Tokyo Bay, just across from Tokyo’s central fish market.

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Tokyo Strolls: Signs of Confusion

Let’s take a couple more walks around Tokyo, shall we?

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Tokyo Strolls: Kitchenware Town

Like many of you, I’ve been more or less glued to my laptop all day, checking news stories and social media regarding the most recent illegal and immoral actions by the Trump administration. I debated with myself about writing a post on a fairly frivolous topic, but decided in the end that a little diversion would not be a bad thing.

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East Garden of Tokyo’s Imperial Palace

The Imperial Palace was within walking distance of our Tokyo hotel. The inner grounds of the Palace are generally not open to the public. The East Garden, however, is readily accessible.

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Rikugi-en, a Poetic Landscape

Not far from Ueno Park, Rikugi-en was my favorite garden in Tokyo. Completed around 1700, it was created for the mansion of a high-ranking samurai.

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Tokyo’s Ueno Park

We really only saw one corner of Ueno Park, which is one of Japan’s first Western-style recreation areas. It’s a big place, over 100 acres, and it contains a zoo, shrines and temples, and several major museums.

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Judy’s Report on the Chicago Women’s March

Let’s take a break from our usual topics for some current events. Today Judy went to the Chicago Women’s March, which (with all the other marches that took place today) seems to have provided a much-needed morale boost for those of us not suffering from paranoid delusions or authoritarian personality disorder.

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