Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Shopping, Japan Style!

And they found FABRIC!

Look at all the happy smiles!

It's not like they are going to a HUGE quilt show in a few days or anything.  You would think they haven't seen, felt, touched fabric for months - 

Like ducks to water, they all dove in!  And I love it!

We had some time to explore some shopping areas while in Nara and Kyoto.  The shopping voyeur inside me just LOVES to see and hear what treasures others have found - some edible, some wearable, some gifts for special people back home.

Street side vendors - can you imagine the aromas?

This vendor was making some kind of bun.

Antique fabrics and scraps outside of a shop.

More antique pieces - from old clothing.

Oh, these indigo blues get me every time!

A beautiful array of colorful foods in cases.

Barrels of unknown wonder! LOL!

This was all seafood.

I know you can smell this one in your mind!

Yes, I passed the octopus on a stick test!

It wasn't bad - if you don't mind salty, chewy, and the surprise of a hard boiled quail egg inside its head.  Appreciate cultural differences, embrace the challenge and sense of adventure.  What a great way to celebrate my birthday.  No cake, no candles, but an octopus on a stick.  LOL.

This I remember from my trip 30 years go - you don't need to read a menu to understand what something is.  It is all in plastic before your eyes.  I am LOVING the food here.  Each meal is an adventure.

And there is always a McDonald's around the corner.  Kind of sad, really - what have we done to the world?  But so far I haven't had to resort to it.

Geisha House Dinner.

Don't laugh at my socks.

We had a wonderful time with our group in the Geisha district in one of Kyoto's historic areas.  The dancing was fascinating, learning about the history and life of a geisha was eye opening, the commitment to comfort, gentleness and hospitality.

The dancer you see in my video below is under 20 years old.  They have their hair done once a week, and she is required to do all of her white make up herself.  She was so graceful and beautiful!

The only thing that took away from our experience was the rather large group of Japanese businessmen in suits and ties in the room next door who got louder and louder as each round of sake was passed!

Click to play:

This was such a wonderful evening!

She was always fluidly moving.

The dance was for each of the four seasons.

Ending with a beautiful bow.

Plum trees bloom in January!

This photo was from yesterday's early morning walkabout - there were 5 of us out exploring where streets would lead.  We found a park with a green area and enjoyed our brisk pace before heading back to the hotel to load up on the bus for the day's excursions.

There is another walkabout ready to happen in a few minutes - I just need to hit POST, put my suitcase outside the door for pick up and we will be off.

The suitcases will be taken by truck to Tokyo and will be waiting for our late afternoon arrival.

In the mean time, we will be doing some more activities here in the Kyoto area.  After lunch we load up onto the bullet train and are off to Tokyo to meet up with our luggage, check into the Tokyo Dome Hotel and start the second half our our Quiltville Goes to Japan adventure!

Photo from yesterday's plum tree discovery!

I can't think of a better way to spend a 57th birthday, can you?

Due to the length of this post and the shortness of time I will be drawing our Quilty Box winners another time in the near future -

Have a wonderful day, everyone!


  1. I am so happy that you are having a Birthday full of wonder and adventure !!

    1. because I am having a great time quilting the mystery quilt that is such an awesome gift we have had the "Good Fortune" to receive from you.

  2. So beautiful love the dedication and grace of these gorgeous girls. I’ve always been fascinated by the Geisha. Hope you have a wonderful time today.
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  3. Happy Birthday! I see Pink and Gold.....! Keeping my eye out for next year's mystery!! lol!

  4. Oh how wonderful! Every sight is completely new... amazing displays of unknown foods!
    Happy Birthday Bonnie!

  5. Happy Birthday! Celebrate Wonderful YOU!

  6. You're a day ahead of us in the PNW so Happy Birthday!!! I would have passed on the octopus on a stick for sure! You are way more adventurous than I am any day!!! Having lots of fun in Japan. I see Sue from Quilt in a Day, great retirement trip for her. Getting my Good Fortune flimsy ready to Quilt. gotta find a fun edge to edge design to quilt on it. I've used the same one on the past 2 mysteries, lol. Quilt show coming up in March, need the finished measurement to register it. Binding and all.

  7. Absolutely stunning dance! What an experience! Thank you for sharing this treasure! I loved the game!

  8. I hope the ladies didn't go shopping for local fabrics and come home with Moda like I did, haha. Not that Moda is bad ;) As for the food pics, I think I might have an idea on a couple of them. The case with various veggies look like they are pre-made for bento boxes, aka lunches. The barrels look to be like a pickle vendor as pickles are an important part of the meal. Of course they have several varieties of diakon (the long white radish), cabbage, egg plants and there should be cucumbers in there somewhere. I love the indigos you found and I would love to see the plumbs bloom in person. I'm enjoying all the photos! :)

  9. more birthdays are always good, no matter where or how they are celebrated!

  10. Such a wonderful experience you are sharing. And on your birthday too! Thank you for thoughtfulness in what you do and share. Happy Birthday! Enjoy!!

  11. Ok...the octopus on a stick made me glad I’m vegan! I’d lose lots of weight there, not knowing what I was eating. Have a blast! Can’t wait for the next installment!

  12. Happy Birthday Bonnie, what a great way to spend a birthday! Enjoy!!

  13. Happy Birthday Bonnie ~May your day be the best ever with many, many more yet to come ....... Have extra fun time for me for, I know I want never get to go to such Beautiful place's like you have.

  14. Happy birthday Bonnie, what a wonderful way to celebrate. X

  15. Happy Birthday - an edible candle - octopus on a stick!
    Love it all, thank you.

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  17. I loved our stay in Japan and the people are just beautiful.
    Having the menu displayed in plastic was so much easier to choose what we wanted to eat. Even my 13 yo son enjoyed his time there. We met the family of a Japanese student we hosted and it was the best holiday. Spending time with a traditional family makes it even better. Forget about mc daonalds ... you don't need it. Enjoy the culture and octopus.


  18. Bonnie, It looks like your birthday was perfect. The food looks scrumptious. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

  19. How kind of you to take the time during your adventure to write home! Happy, happy Birthday!!

  20. Hi Bonnie. It looks like you had a great birthday celebration! Thank you so much for your love of traveling and history and sharing it with us. I may never get to the many places where you have traveled but through you, I have enjoyed parts of the world.

  21. Happy Birthday, and what a great experience, octopus on a stick. Now that is something you don't see every day in the USA.

  22. Happy birthday Bonnie. Hey is that Sue Bouchard in your group?

  23. Beautiful way to spend a birthday! Best wishes!

  24. Thank you so much for sharing Japan with us. It is magnificent. Happy birthday my dear. Enjoy!

  25. What a wonderful way to spend a birthday! Here's wishing you many more happy ones! Love traveling along and seeing the sights with you!

  26. Happy, HAPPY, Birthday!

  27. Love virtually going on your adventure with you. Socks look like the Moda ones I have - ha ha.

  28. that looks like Sue Beuchard in the group at the top of this blog. i am sorry for miss spelling her name. trip looks like you are having a lot of fun. safe travels.

  29. شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر

    شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر شركة المثالية هي افضل شركة تنظيف بالخبر يمكنكم التواصل معها للحصول علي افضل خدمات تنظيف المنازل والشقق والفلل والبيوت والمجالس والكنب والسجاد والموكيت والمفروشات بجودة عالية ومواصفات قياسية حيث تعد شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر اولي الشركات التي التي تخصصت في مجالل التنظيف بالخبر ولديها خبرة كبيرة وعمالة ماهرة وادوات تنظيف حديثة وطاقم عمالة مدرب علي اعلي مستوى فلا تترددوا في الاتصال بشركة المثالية للتنظيف بالخبر وسوف تحصلون علي افضل الخدمات المنزلية من نظافة ومكافحة حشرات بارخص الاسعار

  30. Happy belated birthday! You are a brave woman, I would have passed on the octopus on a stick. Have a good time in Japan.

  31. Sounds (and looks) like you enjoyed a very special adventure for your birthday. You are definitely braver than me regarding the octopus on a stick. And I would have loved shopping with the vendor of the antique fabrics.

  32. Fabulous way to spend your birthday! Loving all the pictures and posts of the great time you are having! You are brave trying that octopus on a stick!

  33. Happy, Happy Birthday Bonnie!

    I have a book on the Geisha's, called "Memoirs of Geisha" by Arthur Golden. It is a motion picture now. It starts in 1936 and then jumps 50's years in the future when this Geisha moves to New York City.

    It is a very good book. I know you like to have audible books, but if you would like to have this book, I will be more than glad to send it to you. I need to pare down.

    Kasilof, AK

  34. I hope you didn't have any trouble with the drunken men, in the next room! Such a great adventure!


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