My last couple of days in Tokyo were filled with preparation - for the end of the semester, for my two finals, and for the trip home. A month in Tokyo was perfect - I was ready to either get on the plane or stay there (and since getting on the plane was my option ... *grin*). Finals were taken on Friday, questions answered in both classes, oral exam discussed, all of that good stuff, and then I headed back to the apt to pack and rest a little. Because even though they're summer classes I actually put some effort into them and I wanted to do well!
Saturday night was the perfect ending to this whole journey - I met Gabriel and his friend for kaitenzushi and then later drinks in Ni-choume, we had a fantastic time and mostly ignored the boys hitting on Gabriel and talked goofy fantastic stuff until we needed to catch our trains. I can honestly say that one of the things that made this summer trip so great was having Gabriel as a companion.
So, good friends, great classes, a school that actually had interesting activities and me better able to manage myself (since I think last year I didn't say no when I should have) and it all combined to equal greatness (well, greatness with a dirty bathroom. *grin*)
The first Kabuki play we saw - the story of a courtesan and her son, and his adoptive father.
It was by no means as cool as the story of the demon that we saw next!
and at last a picture of Kabuki-za - the theatre we saw all the coolness in!
Yasakuni shrine's tori gate - usually they're made with wood but this one is made with iron.
the koi garden i found behind Yasikuni
Rocks in the koi pond - I love the striations.
a priest's cottage behind the pond - i love the juxtaposition of the two paths - one that's all straight lines against the moss and the other that's rough rocks against pebbles
Ueno kittens! They're taken care of by the homeless in ueno and are really cute
the National Museum! Yep, it's big, and ... museum-like
Coming home was a wonderful blur - I got to the airport early but not as early as I thought since I had to repack my suitcase twice to get it under the weight limit, and then it was 10 hours in a middle seat on the airplane with two crying children in the rows in front of me (thus I did not sleep - but watched movies with the sound turned way way up). Getting off the plane in LA my darling M was there to pick me up and whisk me away to the Malibu Beach House (and yes, it really was in Malibu, it really was on the beach, and it really was absolutely wonderful). It's a tradition that the house gets rented every summer by our friends or their parents, and this summer was no different. I got on the porch, was handed a round of hugs, and then a drink, and we watched the waves roll in as the bbq got warm. I may not have been able to string a coherent sentence together, but I cannot imagine a better place to ... not string coherent sentences together.
That night M put me to bed and left me a key, and I got to wake up and have breakfast the next morning with M2 and then hop on the air shuttle for ... that most wonderful of places... home.