Toilets Again?

Toilet installment number 5 (maybe). I have seen this several times but it just dawned on me today that I have not mentioned it. On some toilets the lid of the tank is a basin. The fill water tube is a spout and you can wash your hands with the new fill water thereby using slightly grey water to flush the toilet and saving on water at the bathroom sink. Every little effort counts and this would add up over time. Bravo Japan!

An interesting bit of trivia R brought up the other day. Tokyo and Kyoto are the same letters with the syllables reversed. Don’t know the significance but it is an astute observation.

We have traveled in many Buddhist countries. One thing they have had in common up until we got to Japan is the monks live a life of austerity. Not completely poor or lacking in today’s amenities, but not lavish. For instance, the monks in Myanmar walked the residential streets each day and the locals made offerings of rice and other food so the monks could eat. Observing the temple residents in Japan and after our visit to Koyasan, and the thriving tourist business there, I think the Japanese monks live quite a high life. There may be some temples far away from civilization where things are different but except for having to believe in a deity being a monk here might not be so bad.


Something the folks in Koyasan should work on is the bus schedule. Considering it is a tourist destination the buses are not convenient to what the people would use. Eg. one of the buses stops at 5 after the hour, the next bus on that route is 55 after the hour. The town is not very big so walking is possible but I think catering to the hand that feeds would be a good idea.

I am still amazed at how little garbage there is on the street. Only a few trash cans are placed along the sidewalk and yet no one tosses waste on the ground. There was one place where this was not the case. On the most touristed avenues in Kyoto, Hanamikoji Dori. On our last day there Debbie and I went for a walk and as we turned off the Gion Shijo to walk along the canal there was a noticeable increase in the amount of junk laying on the ground. Tourists!


Traveling along we have passed through many forests. The palette of green is extensive. The mountain sides are solid with trees. The different grouping of trees are distinct and distinguishable by the shade of green of the foliage. Back in the days of film, Kodak, a North American brand of film, was known of it’s warm colors, reds and oranges, while Fuji, a Japanese film, was known for the green shades. Experiencing nature in Japan has made that difference completely understandable.

Another Japanese anomaly. It can be 8pm, completely dark and on the curb aligning a street no wider than one car width, with no cars in sight in any direct, will be a person or two waiting for the light to change from wait to walk. This does not even happen in Canada.


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