Loading Map...

May Golden Week - Nikko

Written on: Saturday August 1st, 2009

A journal entry from: Japan

Long time no see! I have not been keeping up with this lately. But here's the first catch-up blog, from May. Kelly and I took a trip over Golden week through the northern part of the main island (Honshu). First stop was just a little north of Tokyo - Nikko. This little town is very famous because the first Tokugawa Shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu, is entombed here. You can imagine how many people come to see the masoluem and visit the shrine here.

One thing I liked about Nikko was the monkeys carved onto the "sacred stables". There are three monkeys in one particular panel - one covering his ears, one covering his eyes, one covering his mouth. Sound familiar? See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil, maybe? I haven't been able to get a definite answer on whether these are the original models, but one pamphlet I read seemed to say so. Anyway, they are part of a larger series which depicts events and stages in a person's (or monkey's?) life.

After, we spent the night at nearby Chuzenji-ko, and headed off for a short hike the next morning. It was a pretty good hike up a mountain side, which lead into a marshy plain. There were a lot of people around here out fishing (seemed like it was the first day of the season) or nature walking, including a few big school groups - some elementary and some junoir high. It was hilarious running into them and saying "Hello, how are you?" to 50 or more kids in a row, while they giggled and used the few English phrases they knew confidently enough to say hello. At the end of the hike was a huge waterfall, with a lone angler casting around at the bottom.    

After that it was back in the car and off to the next destination.