Bye For Now, Wonderful Asia

On the path of the Temple Walk near Tokushima, Japan

Today is my last day of almost 4 months in Asia. I am feeling sentimental about it….so many special moments, beauty, pathos, fun, learning, unbearable heat and food I didn’t like. Here are a few photos that I haven’t posted previously .

SINGAPORE

Singapore is a food-lover’s paradise — but beware of the durian! You can smell it a block away. Some people love it but many hotels will charge you a $200 cleaning fee if you take it to your room.

Singapore is hyper-commercial and modern but its Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim and Christian residents take time out for reflection all over the city.

Singapore is very serious about rules, laws and money-making but it has little pockets of fun too, mostly brought to you by young people.

SRI LANKA

Sri Lanka is an island, mostly nothing fancy but with a rich history and a wish for peace after years of civil war and occupation.

Sri Lanka’s Buddhas are often colorful and androgynous.

I got to hang out a little with this precocious 3-year old at my hotel in Colombo. Most of the time, he was very outgoing and humorous, but he had a deeper side.

SOUTH KOREA

Most Korean temples are painted with these colors and designs, which are intended to represent those of the natural world

Koreans love their alphabet, “Hangul,” which is easy to learn, adaptable, and therefore pro-democracy.

Koreans are, on average, and in a word, sweet

Koreans openly honor those who fought for democracy in the 20th century. The photo is of part of an exhibit at the 5.18 Archives Museum in Gwangju.

JAPAN

Japan’s temples are festival-crazy. I knew I would find one without looking. This is the festival of the Yogi Ji temple in Tokyo — for three days, thousands of celebrants compete for the privilege of carrying one of the portable shrines through the streets, while everyone else watches and eats at the food stands

Japan, Land of Mucho Matcha — these are breads dusted with it. It makes me hallucinate but the breads are just one example of Japan’s everyday art.

In Japan’s folklore, crows are credited with helping create the world, but lately the people of Tokyo think they are pests, and smart ones at that

Mask of Okame, goddess of happiness in Japanese theater and a presence all over the place.

 

My wonderful visit with Kazuo, Mitomi and Yuta, my niece-in-law Miho’s family in Tokyo.

Please wrap my everything the way the Japanese do

TAIWAN

Downtown Taipei has a little bit of interesting street art….

…but my favorite was the Yu Peng exhibit at the Fine Arts Museum

The village of Yingge is famous for its ceramics — everything from toilets to tiles to fine art

The Red House in Taipei was built by the Japanese, abandoned after the Japanese left in 1948, and then became the center of the city’s LGBT community. Today, the neighborhood is teeming with tourists and gay bars.

Taipei’s temples are among the most beautiful I have ever seen. Baoan was my favorite because of the detail, the art, and the many ways it encourages visitors to connect — joss paper, candles, incense, many types of fortune telling, and many places for contemplation.

I am always looking for a dog to hug. This one was too cool for that but loved the attention he was getting in the public market near my hotel.

On my way home now….

 

 

 

“Find what you love and let it kill you.”
          —- Good advice on the wall of a Taipei cafe.

18 comments

  1. What a fascinating trip you let me experience vicariously. Your Kimmie’s are so discriptive and wellwritten. They let me feel I was almost there with you. Now I vleelcome you back home. xo

  2. I loved all your blogs from Asia, Kim, and learned so much from them about each country you visited. You notice details and formulate impressions most people don’t, and you always meet people (and dogs and horses) wherever you go with an open heart. Thank you, and safe travels home.

  3. What a journey, Kim. And you described it so beautifully with your words and photos. Thanks for taking us along. No vemos en San MIguel?

  4. Thank you for a wonderful trip. And this quote is a real gift. “Find what you love and let it kill you.” That is brilliant. Look forward to seeing you back in SMA.

  5. I love your photos, they are very distinctly represent the countries. And I didn’t know that “Some people love it but many hotels will charge you a $200 cleaning fee if you take it to your room.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s