I have not posted.
Summer heat brings an idea,
I have not posted.
During our visit to Takayama we made a stop at Takayama-jinya. Takayama-jinya served as the local government house and it had many rooms including bathrooms, kitchens, rooms for sleeping, rooms for entertaining guests, and rooms for torturing them. It was in official use until 1969 and is now open as a museum.
Truth be told, the two things I found most interesting about the museum was the torture room…umm…i mean “advanced interrogation room” and the implements of “advanced interrogation,” and the different textures around the government building.
After waking up at the ryokan, we slowly made our way downstairs for breakfast. I knew that it would be a traditional Japanese breakfast, and I was open to the idea (and quite hungry), but when I approached the table and saw this flat fish in front of my place. I lost my appetite, almost entirely.
It didn’t help that the other foods offered (tofu, poached egg, pickled stuff, miso soup, etc) also didn’t resemble breakfast foods to me.
I tried to eat it. Really, I tried. But I just couldn’t.
I left the table feeling pretty embarrassed because I had barely eaten the food put in front of me. I had a bit of everything, but just couldn’t manage to take it all down!
Eating at the ryokan is part of the experience; few ryokans will allow you to stay without also paying for the meals. Most of the time, they seek to prepare uber-traditional meals with a focus on foods and ingredients that are specialties in the region of the ryokan. Soeno, the ryokan we stayed at last weekend, was no exception.
Dinner was served in the dining hall and each room had their own, semi-private area. We were seated across from one another and, in the center of our table was a large open pit with a few coals on it. Before we even arrived, they had begun grilling some fish in our pit and they had set out a tray of starters.
So, as I mentioned a few days ago, we went up to Takayama for a weekend to celebrate our 5th anniversary. With the help of a friend, we made a reservation at Soene, a ryokan that is part of the Fukuchi Onsen area.
This was definitely a flash place, perfect for a special occasion like our 5th wedding anniversary. With prices over $200 per person per night, it isn’t somewhere you go when you are just looking for a place to rest your head. It is more of an experience.
From the get go we felt totally pampered and relaxed. As we were walking down from the bus stop a man from the inn stepped outside and greeted us and directed us to the entrance. He gave a brief chuckle when he asked if he could carry our luggage, since we only had our two small day bags. (If we have learned anything this year, we have definitely learned how to travel light)
This past weekend Aaron and I went to Takayama for a stay at a fancy ryokan in an onsen village to celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary. As we walked around Takayama and the onsen village I was especially taken with all the hydrangeas growing everywhere. They were in full bloom and totally lovely.
They were even growing around the graves at one of the graveyards we visited and explored.
Aaron just mentioned that we visited Hida no Sato in his Engrish Tuesday post. Hida no Sato is, essentially, an old building graveyard. They have moved numerous historic old structures (homes and whatnot) to this site in order to preserve them and allow visitors to see what rural life in Japan was like.
We couldn’t have visited on a more picturesque day. The village was quiet and peaceful and the ground was rather untouched by footsteps. We were able to wander at our own pace and take a good look inside the buildings (most of which are completely open to the public). The only limiting factor was our stamina and the relative numbness of our toes.