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Tuesday 17 May 2016
Kyoto, Japan

Hakone Day 2 and onward to Kyoto!

I find myself tonight in a rather shoddy "pension" in Kyoto with a stale-smelling room, an owner that doesn't have a word of English (requiring I use the Google Translate app profusely...although how it translated "can I upgrade the room" to "your kin will rise anew" is anyone's guess), and a rather odd rule stating that the shared shower room can only be used between 5pm and 9am?!? (all showers shared by cohabitants at the same time of course)

Ah the Tommy Rich Inn... when I booked it for 3 nights at 1am last night, it waslargely my fault for leaving it to the last minute and it certainly seemed the best option within the budget I was looking at (around €50/night) as I didn't want to share a room with other people snoring. I've been so busy lately it only occurred to me late last night "um... where am I sleeping tomorrow night when I arrive into Kyoto?"

Also I'd booked a twin room, but trying to get that across to the guy via Google Translate didn't work out too well, so I took the single room he gave me, but I found the stale smell so bad (like a granny flat) that I asked him if I could look at the Tatami room on the off-chance he might let me upgrade. Tatami rooms are the traditional minimalist Japanese style rooms with rice-paper windows and low-rise tables. Bizarrely they are almost always prohibitively expensive to book for the luxury of essentially sleeping on a duvet. Still though, they do look cool and are down with the "must try" list of things to do in Japan. So he shows me the room, and wow! It smells clean and fresh with that lovely woody smell courtesy of the tatami mats. He then made out that I could stay in the room tonight (to be honest he was probably sick of me using Google Translate at this stage so just caved in), but will probably have to move into the other one tomorrow. Score! Suits me for tonight.. and perhaps I can change the other room tomorrow.

Anyway this now provides me with a little time to update the blog (with bullet points) for the past few days.. so here goes...

Hakone Day 2

- Rain today. Heavy rain. And fog. But hell I still had a 2nd day on my Hakone Free Pass so nothing an umbrella couldn't sort ;)

- Will upload pics of Hakone Day 2 later..

- Took bullet train (Shikansen) to Kyoto from Odawara (near Hakone). 320 kph.... incredible and damn comfy too with seats that have actual legroom for once! Didn't really see necessity in having a reserved seat as you could sit whereever you wanted on the cheaper unreserved seats??

- Arrived Kyoto.. and we're up to date... :)




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Gig in Japan

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My first foray in the Land of the Rising Sun. Tokyo, Kyoto, Nara, Sumo-wrasslin and most-importantly wasabi Kit Kat!

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