Friday, April 17, 2009


A falcon riding the thermal updraft over the valley, looking for a meal.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fleeting Beauty

Spring in Japan is the time for cherry blossoms and cherry blossom viewing parties.
The blossoms only last for about a week or so.
Just starting to flower.

In full bloom.

Only one petal left here.
A gentle breeze creates a blizzard of cherry blossom petals, a lot like snow but warmer.

Yes, in case you were wondering you can eat them. I have had cherry blossom petals in a desert type of tofu and in some traditional Japanese sweets. It is an extremely subtle flavour.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Shitenno-ji Temple

On the way back from the cosplay parade in DenDen town Osaka, my friend, Zach, told me to go down a narrow alley. 'It leads to a main avenue and there is a subway station right there, you could even walk back to Tennoji-station. There is a kind of temple area there too.' Half disbelieving this, I set off.

Cresting a hill up the alley, I had my picture taken but some masked Japanese tourists.
Shooting from the hip, I took their picture too.

Upon reaching the end of the alley, I found there was indeed a subway station! Zach knows his maps. It was a station that was only two stops from my destination so I decided to walk. In a small temple there was a very charming prayer wheel:
The characters translate roughly to mean:One turn, one prayer.

Continuing down the avenue, I found myself to be near the Shitenno-ji temple, a major temple in Osaka. Inside most of the buildings were 'no photography' signs, outside, and on the temple grounds was filled with what could best be described as a huge garage sale type market. It was the spring equinox and the temple was incredibly busy.

Having taken many pictures of people that day (see the previous post Street Festival I took pictures of pigeons! Of which there were scores.

They always look so surprised.

I'd hope the bird chews it, but they don't have teeth...Good luck bird.

Thank you for the directions Zach.