My impression of the Kyoto part of our trip was that it’d be the part where we would escape the busyness of Tokyo and gaze upon some idyllic countryside with a bunch of pretty things to look at.
We use our beloved and precious weeklong JR passes to hop on a shinkansen bullet train to Kyoto in the morning. During the ride, I was supposed to sleep but I instead grew my kitten town into a village or something. At some point a train attendant? lady pushed a cart of goodies which made me feel like I was on some version of the Hogwarts Express. It was great.
Upon arrival, we get some nice tofu at a tofu restaurant in both meal and dessert form and we jump right into the thick of things by visiting a shrine. We shrined hard. (thanks to KH for coming up with the shrining verb for us). I also got matcha soft serve, which began my personal journey of Japanese ice cream treats.
We then trek up a hill and grab some mochi desserts (shaved ice with matcha and mochi yess) and pass by some photogenic streets. Dinner is this thing called Fire Ramen where they light the ramen on fire inches from your face. Needless to say it was pretty lit. The noodles were pretty average I must admit, but the fire was pretty entertaining, or at least concerning, as your face would stay hot for minutes after like a burn would, lol.
After this we simulate a seventh of Jericho by walking around a castle once before heading to our Airbnb to retire for the day.
Our Kyoto airbnb was really cool, mostly because of how it utilized such a small space. There was an entryway where you’re supposed to wear your street shoes and traditional Japanese wooden sandals, then a rug area where you’re supposed to wear slippers. So many spaces were divided by steps or changes in altitude; a raised area by the window where we put our luggage, a table where one side was a step that acted as a bench and the other side used chairs, and floor pillows. It was a cool effect of visually separating out spaces for different functions.
My only complaint would be that the stairs were really short depth wise, meaning that going up you’d be fine, as your balance would be on your toes, but going down your foot wouldn’t fit on the step, so you’d need to go sideways crab-style or go down duck-footed.
Everything else was fun though – the fake samurai style swords in the bedroom, the traditional Japanese floor mattresses we YouTubed a video to learn how to prepare, and the recurring cube themes seen in the shapes of furniture and the drain designs.
That night we slept soundly in our freshly made beds, regenerating energy for further shrining on the morrow.