Kyoto Kinder and Garden Gran Kidnap

3rd day in Japan. 1st day of Youchien (Kindergarten). Can’t be that different from nursery, right? Well, I wasn’t right. Same age kids, sure, but a very different experience.     The first half an hour was…well, I don’t really know – I got told which class (white rabbit class), said ‘hi’ to the teacher,…

Falling in Love with Arashiyama

Finally, a decent sleep. After the previous 24 hours of travelling, it was sorely needed. I woke up with the anxieties of the previous night swallowed up in the excitement of simply waking up IN JAPAN! Invigorated by thoughts of how I would spend my first free day in Kyoto, the city of my dreams…

A Long Journey for a Dreary Welcome

1 BUS. To Birmingham New Street. 1 TRAIN. Birmingham New Street to International Station. 3 PLANES. 15 hours. Birmingham to Dusseldorf, to Tokyo, to Osaka. 1 COACH. Osaka Itami Airport to Kyoto Station. 1 MORE TRAIN. Kyoto Station to Enmachi Station. Kyoto: 20:30, 27th June 2016. Weather: heavy rain. I arrived at Kyoto Station late, with…

Song of the Kamogawa (鴨川の歌)

泣 Wide River chitters and trees chirp. Awake from thirteen year sleep long, Semi begin their one week summer song.                                                                                             Ringing. Crying. 歌 River’s stones bare children’s feet. Dancing, hot below sun’s summer face, Cool ‘gainst River’s fleeting embrace.                                                                                                Laughing. Singing. ため息 North hills look and bake. Bright greens fade to whites and…