日本の四季ははっきりしている。The seasons in Japan are very clear.
I did my share of enjoying the color-changing leaves of fall (紅葉ーkouyou) at Arashiyama, Kyoto. It’s a very beautiful place with plenty to do. It’s pretty much a valley of illness.* There is a pathway through a bamboo forest, boats you can rent that you can either peddle yourself or have someone else do the work like the pic above, a monkey park where you can feed Japanese monkeys any combination of apple cubes, potato slices and chestnuts, lookouts high and low, restaurants, and of course a bunch of Shrines.
You can’t see her in any of these pics, but there was a girl playing a flute along side the river. It had a very Japanese-like sound to it and it really set the tone. Anyone in earshot would have easily been drawn in. It was almost unreal, you know, because she was off the beaten path leaning against a tree in a spot that she obviously had to do some hiking to, playing some ill** flute songs just for the sake of playing. No hat turned up-side down with a couple of her own dollars in it next to her CD’s, handmade business cards, and myspace address… she was just there fluting away. Even with the red and orange canopy overhead and tourist filled boats floating by, it was like she was the main event.
The following are mountains near my town. I took these pics on the way to Arashiyama.
*’illness’ carries an extremely positive meaning when used by those in my generation. It’s usage is similar to ‘sick.’ EX: That was sick! = That was amazing!
**again, ‘ill’ is very positive here. EX: I heard that new CD was ill son. = I heard that new CD was extremely good my friend.