Recently, my parents came to visit me in Japan. My father had been teaching a class in Japan for all of May and my mom flew over when the class was finished. First, they went all the way up to Aomori to visit my brother. Then we all met up in Tokyo for three, fun days of hanging out. The only bummer about the Tokyo trip was that it rained the ENTIRE time. We didn’t mind, though. We weren’t really there to explore the city; we just wanted to spend time as a family.
After Tokyo, my brother went back up North and my parents came to stay with me in Ogaki for a few days. We went hiking and ate at some great restaurants. It was wonderful.
They left this past Monday and I already miss them like crazy. I can’t wait to see them again at Christmas!
(My Mom and Dad in Tokyo.)
Since I have lived in Ogaki for over 13 years it is rare for me to be in a part of the city that I am not familiar with, but that is exactly what happened to me recently. I had a bit of extra time a few days ago and decided that since the weather was so beautiful that I would take a short bike ride to get a little exercise before work. While riding, I found myself to be in a part of the city near Route 21 that I don’t really know all that well. While there, stumbled upon a very interesting and historically important small temple called Juenji Temple. From the sign in front of the temple, I learned that it was supposedly built in the year 815 by Saicho, and that it is one of the oldest temples in Ogaki. I didn’t know who Saicho was, so I did a bit of research on him and in addition to learning that he was extremely well known Buddhist monk who founded the Tendai school of Buddhist learning, but that he is also credited with introducing tea to Japan from China! Since he was born in the city of Omi in Shiga prefecture, it is very possible that he does have a connection to Ogaki, too. Saicho seems like a very fascinating historical figure and someone that I hope I can learn even more about in the future.
In addition to being one of the oldest temples in Ogaki, the sign in front of Juenji temple also says that the architectural style of the front gate indicates that it may have been built early in the Muromachi Era, which means that the gate itself is also one of the oldest existing structures in Ogaki, too. It was very exciting for me to just stumble upon this wonderful cultural asset during what was supposed to be just a quick bike ride.
I know I have said this in my blog posts before, but keep your eyes open everyone! You never know what interesting things you might see!
1. If it never rains, we’ll never grow. 雨が降らなければ、成長しない。
2. No rain, no flowers. 雨なくして、花は咲かない。
3. Rain makes everything beautiful. 雨は全てのものを美しくする。
Happy rainy days! 雨の日を楽しんでくださいね！
Every week I try to make an effort to read. There’s a book series I brought from America that I’m powering through. The series is called “A Game of Thrones”. There is also an extremely popular TV show by the same name.
I am currently in the fourth book and cannot wait until I finish this book. The only issue is that I have one book left after that, but the author plans on writing two more books. When I finish the fifth book, I will have to wait a LONG time to read the next books.
Here’s a picture of my book collection in Japan. It’s pretty weak, but I’m planning on getting more when I’m finished with these!