Monday, October 23, 2006

Kyoto Day 1 Video

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Here's part one of the trip to Kyoto. On the first day we visited Ginkakuji (the silver pavillion), and later in the evening we explored the Kyoto train station, which itself is a work of modern art.

Editor's Notes:

The video is a bit shakey in ginkakuji, but you get the impression of the place. In one part you will see a display of many different kinds of moss. Some of them were labelled VIP- and infact, they did look quite impressive as far as moss goes. You can't see much, but I included this anyway because the entire grounds were covered by moss, and I think this is important to the shinto belief that everything is alive. If you're not interested in eastern religions, replace the word "Shinto" with "Jedi", and read as "The Jedi belief that everything is part of the force." It's essentially the same religion, as far as I can tell....not to offend any Shintoists out there, I just don't know anything more about it. Point is, the whole garden is so green and alive, as you walk through it you feel like it's breathing and growing with you.

Kyoto Eki is really quite an impressive building, although many locals protested it when it was first errected; calling it an eyesore in the middle of a beautiful traditional city. On the contrary, I was quite impressed with Kyoto station. Down the middle, an endless line of escalators carry you up a whole 14 floors from ground level. At night, many people were sitting on the roof top where there is an open air bamboo garden, and a small patch of lawn. The station is filled with large bizarre curving shapes, and is mostly open to the sky. I think it is a good example of the harmony of the modern world with ancient tradition, which I think Japan pulls off so well. It also incorporates the natural world with the constructed human world, an ideal that Kyoto pulls off perfectly. As you will see in future episodes, the city is a wonderful harmonization of these opposites, and that is what made it such an intriguing city to me.


P.s. Please see Tara's pictures below if you haven't already!


Derrick M said...

Cool Video!

And may the Force be with you! ;P

Meaghan said...

haha thank you for explaining the religion in terms I can understand hahaha. Now I want to go there even more!
It seriously looks so beautiful

Anonymous said...

Hey Guys!!

LOVE the pics and video! really entertaining while sitting in a boring Classics class about ancient coinage....the WORST! Anyway, it's almost Halloween and you guys are missing out because Tom and Sabrina are having a Haunted Housewarming (costumes mandatory) guys can still make it! haha, hope everything is well!
ps. sorry, I couldn't remember my login info so anonymous, it is!

Mom d said...

Looks beautiful, can't wait to see more.

your friends in Japan said...

Derrick - Thanks! You too. May the force be with us, everyone!

Meaghan - I thought you'd appreciate that. ;)
But the moss really does give that Dagobah swamp impression: green everywhere you look.

Melissa - Glad we could make school fun for you!
Fortunately we're not completely missing out on Halloween, a lot of the teachers are throwing costume parties these days. Because we're in a building with so many English teachers, there are costume parties every weekend. Of course, we are missing out on your great company... and as I recall from the 80's - you like to go all out when you dress up. Please send pictures of the costume party.

Debbie - Good, there's lots more to come.




Arlene said...

I'm so glad you were able to get away for a few days. The gardens look so beautiful. We saw a lot of the lovely Tara, but nothing of the lovely Ian. Why's that? Doesn't the lovely Ian trust the lovely Tara with the camera? Does he think men are better at filming than women? Is that it? The fact that he's in a male-dominated society doesn't necessarily mean that he is more skilled than a woman, does it?!!!! Now, get smart boy and give the camera to the girl from time to time!


MomE said...

Other people? When did I become an 'other people ?'Yes, Ian hand over the camera sometimes!

your friends in Japan said...

Thanks for the comments!

Arlene - You will notice that I am in lots of pictures, because Tara takes pictures of me.
When I gave her the video camera, she filmed monkeys. That's how it goes in the film industry, I'm just not cute enough to compete with those little guys.

Mom - :P