Leigha and the Triplets

Monday, November 03, 2008

Japan- Day 11

Wednesday was supposed to be my last sight seeing day, but I was feeling very adventurous. I decided that I could help Leigha get Robert's stroller on the trains if I had him out of it and walking with me. Then she could just push him the rest of the time. We hadn't had any chance to do any souvenir shopping, other than at the grounds of the Imperial Palace.

The girls were headed back to where we went the second day of our trip. Unfortunately, by the time we had arrived at the temple, all of the stores were closed down. I decided that I wanted to go back there, too, and see what it looked like during the day. We happened to get ready just in time to leave with the girls. I was very grateful for the the help through the bus and train stations. I did let them know that they didn't have to stay with us the whole day.

I am so glad we went back. It was such a different place during the day. The hustle and bustle of all the souvenir shops that lined that path to the temple was fascinating.

Leigha loved posing like all of the Japanese kids did.

All of the things that we weren't able to see the first time, we were seeing in action. In the middle of the walkway was a large cauldron that was smoldering. The Japanese would walk up to it and wave the smoke towards them as some spiritual ritual.

By the time we had reached the temple, we ran into the girls. They helped me take turns bringing the kids into the temple. There was just no way I was doing it with two strollers. There wasn't a lot to see, but Leigha was thrilled to be able to go in this time. The boys just enjoyed the freedom from their strollers.

After leaving the temple, there was a big fountain of water with individual ladles. Leigha wanted to follow along and drink it like the lady in the picture. I said something along the lines of "Not on your life!" I told her that she could use the water to wash off her hand like everyone else was doing.

After buying a few souvenirs, we were ready to head home. As luck would have it, so were the girls. They stayed with us for most of the journey home before taking off on their own again. I considered myself very lucky, because as adventurous as I was feeling, I was much happier having adult help on the trains!

For the first time since we had been there, I finally got to experience a crowd on the trains. I had seen various YouTube videos of trains being packed and people being shoved, kicked, and pushed inside by conductors. I thought for a few minutes about how I would manage to get a shot of the train passengers without being overly rude. I took a few pictures without ever putting the camera to my face. That way it just looked like I was waving it around testing it!

When we got off, I turned into the total tourist and turned around to get a few snapshots of the train as it was getting ready to leave. I was never so thrilled to get off a train. If I were alone, it wouldn't have been a big deal, but with two strollers I wouldn't have wanted to stay on the train any longer! Just imagine what the train would look like after a few more stops!

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