Saturday, June 28, 2008

Saturday Night

The family (minus Eric who is headed north to Sapporo) arrived back at our place late this afternoon. We decided to check out the Tokyo Dome tonight (area with shops, restaurants, rides, etc). We didn't spend too much time there as it was already late, but did get to eat and watch people walking around dressed up as anime characters.

actual seating in a train station

Saturday afternoon

Here's some pictures from the temple Chris and I went to this afternoon.

temples grounds and people painting in the background

koi fish and turtles

Friday, June 27, 2008

dinner date

Chris and I went out for dinner. I think it was some type of Asian fusion type food--not sure what kind, but it was good. We shared all the plates.

One thing I love about Yokohama and Japan in general is that you feel safe walking around at night. You don't get a feeling of dread walking feel feel nothing out of the ordinary.

We walked back to our place from the restaurant (a couple train stops away). Right in front of the Yokohama Modern Art Museum are these little lights in the walkway. Next to the lights there are lots of small solar panels that take in light during the day. At night these little lights light up and fade in and out in different patterns all across the walkway. They are the color of fireflies--a greenish color. --They are very neat to see.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

not much rain for being "rainy season"

I found 2 jewels on the ground minutes apart about a block away from each other

Chris and I spent Tuesday night with my co-worker, her boyfriend and her sister (out from California on vacation in Japan). We ate at the Hawaiian restaurant near our place. It was really nice hanging out with them. Thanks for meeting up with us! :)

We spent a night of karaoke with the family yesterday. It was nice to get out and sing a bit. They took off on a train this morning to Hiroshima for a few nights.

Sonia and Steven
Chris singing the 15-year-old-singer-who sounds-30 song
Yamille and Eric

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Rainy Day

yummy chocolate filled bread at our local cafe

Chris studying Japanese (me too)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


The last weeks have been busy and a bit mixed up lately, so I just haven't written as much as usual. The family was in Kyoto for the week, and will be returning to our place tomorrow.

I got to spend time at my pottery class this morning, Chris and I spent a little time shopping and then took a late afternoon train ride to Enoshima (45 min away).

We've been told for the past couple weeks or more that we were in the middle of the rainy season here in Japan. Finally today we actually got rain. It may be the start of that really really rainy period we keep hearing about.

We arrived in Enoshima just in time for dinner so we found a place to eat near the ocean. The food turned out to be good. It was also great to hear/watch an English tv program while we were eating--even if it happened to be the teenage reality-drama show "The Hills"...strangely wonderful to just be able to understand everything.

ordering from the all-in-Japanese menu
"The Hills" in the background

lantern and dragon at the beginning of the bridge to Enoshima Island

us on the island

view from an area above on the island

Sunday, June 15, 2008

over the weekend

We spent Saturday in Kamakura and Sunday in Harajuku and Akihabara along with the family. I didn't take too many pics, but pictures #2, and #3 are thanks to Eric.

Kamakura seasonal flowers in bloom

us in Kamakura

also taken in Kamakura

100 yen store in Harajuku

Friday, June 13, 2008

on going goings on going ons

It's been awhile since I've written here. Time to just sit and type seems more scarce now, but it's nice to make some time to do it now. Even at 1:30 am in the morning :) Chris is up too next to me, except he's looking at the robotics set he just bought.

We celebrated our anniversary recently :) Chris planned the night--a dinner cruise out on Yokohama Bay. Very beautiful skyline and just a very relaxing night.

We now have family staying with us for the next few weeks (Chris's parents, brother and family friend), so you should see some pictures very soon as we will also be doing more "site seeing" along with them on the weekends.

Monday, June 2, 2008


Some Italy pictures with captions :)

We flew Lufthansa to Munich and then Munich to Venice.
We were given a hot lunch and dinner on the flight.
Best economy class food I've had :) and I would definitely fly on Lufthansa again.

Our view over Germany right before landing--very green.
The sky was the bluest sky I've ever seen! The sky was the most amazing electric blue color around 8 pm at night as we were boarding our next flight--never seen anything like it.

Wonderful tasting gelato! Very strong flavors and a cheap treat
too at 1 euro a scoop!
The one below was lemon flavored.

Due to the time difference, we woke up on our first morning in Venice quite early so we headed out to San Marco square--having it almost all to ourselves. The sunlight was amazing in the morning! What they say about the light in Venice being unique is true--so beautiful.

I call this picture, "Catch a tiger by the tail..." :)

Ahhh...watermelon that doesn't cost $50+! And very sweet too! Fruit in Japan is very expensive so we took advantage of the "cheap" and delicious fruit in Venice. The half a watermelon below cost less than 4 euros in the local supermarket!
There was lots of graffiti in Venice and Rome, but it didn't bother us much. Most of the graffiti seemed rather "tame" as you can see by one example below.

If you are ever driving in Italy (especially Tuscany or smaller towns) a GPS system will save your life! We are so glad we opted to rent one of these. It saved us lots of time and avoided the stresses of stopping to look at maps to figure out what obscure street we might be on. Although, a couple times the GPS wanted to take us on some off-road adventures on very rocky unpaved-unamed roads ;) It's not perfect, but was great for our trip.

This is one reason I picked the place we stayed in Tuscany--the gorgeous pool with amazing views. Unfortunately it rained much of the time we were in Tuscany and was cooler also, so besides a quick dip in the pool, we weren't able to take advantage of it like we wanted. The view was definitely worth staying here though.

We really took advantage of our fireplace on the colder nights in Tuscany.

The neighbor's dog (to right of Chris) escorting us the whole way on our walk near where we stayed in Tuscany. Very friendly!

Views that literally took our breath away in Cortona (town where the movie and book "Under the Tuscan Sun" is based). We both highly recommend seeing this town. We also ended up driving to the lake you see in the distance in the picture below.

The variety of doors in Italy is astounding. All very unique! I wouldn't be surprised if there were a book with thousands of pictures of doors that can be found in Italy.

Fuzzy caterpillar by the pool

These flowers can be found everywhere in the countryside and also were spotted in downtown Rome. These are the famous flowers you will see dotting Italian countryside paintings.