01.12.2011 - 01.12.2011
The last few days have been taken up with tours. Tours are great because you can fit a lot in a short amount of time and the tour guides often give some great background information on their culture but the downside is you can feel a bit rushed. We did the day tour of Tokyo on Tuesday and really enjoyed it. The first stop was Tokyo tower. This tower was originally built for TV reception and is actually a little bit bigger than the Eiffel tower in paris. They are apparently in the process of building a new one. It looks beautiful at night and offers some great views of Tokyo. The next stop was a tea ceremony at happo-en, which is also a very popular spot for weddings and we saw one while we were there. They divided the tour group into two groups for the ceremony and so while the first group were in we got to explore the gardens. I took so many photos as it was so beautiful. The coy fish are very sacred in japan and there were hundreds in the pond. There was also a row of bonsai trees with the oldest being over 500 years old. The tea ceremony was beautiful and ritualised, although I managed to lean back too far and bash my head on the glass upsetting the serenity of the occasion and then i nearly dropped the sacred tea cup! All I can say is that I was very tired as I haven't had a full nights sleep since I arrived. Anyway back to the tea ceremony they start with a sugar confectionary lolly and then you drink the green tea which is made from powdered green tea and frothed with a bamboo whisk. It was bitter but I didn't mind it and may drink more green tea when I get home.