Friday, January 28, 2011

Kasr El Nil Bridge

Kasr El Nil Bridge 3

Kasr El Nil Bridge 2

Kasr El Nil Bridge

Kasr El Nil Bridge over the Nile River, Cairo, Egypt. From August 2003. The lion sculptures are by Alfred Jacuemart. That is Cairo Tower in the distance.

It is strange to feel a part of something when one is so far away. I know for many years people there wanted something better. I can only hope they get it without more bloodshed.

Alexandria, Egypt

I've said for some time that I want to post these photos. I don't think I ever did. I need to find the other photo discs since these were from August 2003.

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Alexandria 11

Alexandria 10

Alexandria 9

Alexandria 8

Alexandria 7

Alexandria 6

Alexandria 5

Alexandria 4

Alexandria 3

Alexandria 2

Alexandria 1

Perhaps one day I will feel up to writing a bit about these photos and the trip. But for now I am reflecting on those I knew and hoping fully that they are okay.

Thank you for looking at my post.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hoju-in Temple in Minato, Tokyo, Japan

If you have been checking out my posts of my December trip to Tokyo, I apologize for not posting sooner. This time it was because I needed to find out just what this little shrine area in Shiba-koen was.

Hoju-in 1

Hoju-in 2

Hoju-in is right across the street from Tokyo Tower. Although it's rather hard to find English information on-line about it. However that's one of the things I like about Japan, stumbling on interesting little places and then finding out just what they are.

Hoju-in 3

The nice thing about Minato in Tokyo is they have websites with good information also in English. It's where I found out about the Seven Lucky Gods of Fortune (Shichi-fukujin) and their temples which are found through out Minato.

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Hoju-in Temple is for Benzai-ten, the Lucky Goddess of the arts and monitory fortune.

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Hoju-in 7

This may be the hall there that houses a statue of Emma-Daio, judge of the dead. (I can't help but think of Hell Girl once I found this out).

Hoju-in 4

There are a few small shrines there.

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Hoju-in 9

Snakes are associated with the goddess Benzaiten. It is said she can assume the shape of a snake or dragon, or that a snake is her messenger. So it's good to see this snake is well tended to with a fresh cup of sake.

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As is this Jizo Bosatsu, protector of children.

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I did find out an interesting story about the frog. He might represent Gama-ike. It seems there once was a large fire in the area and a large frog leaped out of a pond and extinguished the flames with his breath. The actual pond is in Moto-Azuba and is fed by a natural spring. It was almost destroyed recently by construction but they built around it. Gama-ike is a protector for burns.

Hoju-in 12

Just past the shrines is a pond, Benten-ike.

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Hoju-in 14

Benzai-ten was originally a river goddess which is why there is a water feature here. It was quite lovely to see.

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Walking along the turning leaves of Autumn. Which I will share next post exploring Shiba-koen park. Thank you for looking at my entry here.

Monday, January 24, 2011

My New Year's soba

new year soba

My bad for not posting this sooner. This year I made a soba soup. I'm guessing this would fall under Kake Soba since I made it with tsuyu, buckwheat noodles (soba), a bit of green onion and kamaboko. I also added oyster mushrooms and datemaki which is similar to tamago (the omelet style). I didn't know it's a traditional osechi New Year's dish. It was a nice addition to my soup!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Friday, January 21, 2011

A walk around Minato

I really liked the area I stayed in Tokyo. Even though it was mostly office buildings, there was still plenty to see. These photos are from 12/5/2010. My main goal was to find something to help with the sinus problems I had from the flight over. Turns out not such an easy task but I did really enjoy my walk through Minato.

minato 1

This little Shinto shrine is right next door to the Villa Fontaine hotel I stayed at. From what I could find out, it would be dedicated to the god Inarai.

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One of two kitsune there. This one may have a "jewel" in it's mouth.

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This one perhaps has a scroll it it's mouth. It was really nice to see this every day.

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Lots of modern office buildings but they still use older styled design for some places.

minato 8

I don't know what the sign says or how old it is, perhaps it has something to do with Tokyo Harbor? I do find interesting how they curved the street in to accommodate keeping the sign there.

minato 10

Love the mix of the older buildings with the new ones.

minato 12

Even with all the modern buildings there still is a love of nature. Wonderful color from that very large tree.

minato 15

In the middle of it all came across another shrine. A landscaped island in a sea of concrete.

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Still have not found out anything about this one. I will have to go up the stairs next time.

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This one though is the Fushimi Sanpo Inari shrine. It's located next to the World Wildlife Fund and other office buildings. It's also Shinto and dedicated to the god Inari. The roof is copper. Light was not great so I didn't get decent photos. Here's a wiki article about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fushimi_Sanp%C5%8D_Inari_Shrine

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Ginkgo trees in Shiba-koen. I will have more from this park.

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One of my favorite things to see there was this, Tokyo Tower. I was too tired to go up the hill but one can enjoy it without doing that. I ended up getting the Nano Blocks kit for it as a souvenir of the trip.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

A moment in time

I wasn't sure if I was going to start posting this new thing I'm doing. For a little bit now I've been trying to take more photos of the guys who I see every day. I'm going to go ahead and roll with it and share a bit. They aren't the best photos thanks to no light in my apartment plus they often happen at night. I apologize in advance for the quality of some of them. But it's more of catching a moment or two as you may see. So I give you a glimpse into Shinji's internal dialogue.

not gonna look 1 8

Not gonna look

not gonna look at all 1 8

I'm not gonna look at all.

maybe I can run away 1 8

Maybe I can run away.

shoot I looked 1 8

Shoot, I looked.

aww drats 1 8

Aw drats.