Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Tuesday Travels - Kyoto Part One

My week is off because of the holiday we had on I'm still calling this Tuesday Travels!

We left Yokohama and traveled to Osaka, where we would be staying for 5 nights.  We were using Osaka as our base and taking day trips from there.
We passed Mount Fuji on the way...we were lucky to have a clear day to see the top!

A train schedule for track 3.  We were taking the Hikari 475 train.

Shinkansen, or bullet trains are very comfortable.

We went to Kyoto the next day to see the sites.  We were visiting places we had never been to before.

First stop was the Arashiyama Bamboo forest.  It was much smaller than I anticipated, but it was still nice to see.

Very quiet and calm while walking through the trees...

The smells from this small shop drew us in for lunch...
Delicious yakisoba...

At the train station we found fresh roasted sweet potatoes...these are my favorites!

Next, we took a taxi to Nyan Nyan Ji, which is a cat temple themed cat cafe.  Thankfully, our driver knew where it was because it was very far off the beaten path!

There were cats everywhere!

This stuffed cat was about 6 feet tall!

There was one cat walking around but she didn't seem very interested in the people

The "shrine" area...

We had a yummy curry...

There weren't very many things that interested me for purchase, but I guess that is a good thing!

Sign out front with name of cafe and designated parking...

I'll visit the other Kyoto locations next week...stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Mancat Monday but on a Tuesday

This has been a good week for the boys.  We are being more regular with the "Safe Space" essential oils and are seeing huge improvements in behavior.
Flynn is the main culprit right now, but we think he truly is wanting to play with Lenny.  He has so much energy and needs an outlet to burn some of it off.  I put him in a harness and we did a short adventure in the back yard.  He wasn't completely confident, but seemed to enjoy it.  He was very tired after his outing!  A tired cat isn't causing trouble!

I picked up some new catnip toys to see how Harrison would do with them.  Oliver loved his!

Rusty and Harrison checking out another one...

Harrison found his and enjoyed bunny kicking and licking it.  Thankfully, he didn't eat the fabric like he does with the banana or carrot shapes.  We may have found a way to have catnip again!

You can see we are seeing much improvement with Lenny.  Here he and George share Aunties lap.  Oliver is on the back of the chair, and you can see Flynn's legs on the right, he is on the ottoman.

Auntie is the pack leader at our house.

That's our update for the week.  Tomorrow the Japan trip continues...

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Tuesday Travels - Tokyo Part One

This was our first trip into Tokyo because we are staying in Yokohama, which is about 45 minutes away.  We wanted to get to two areas, Gotokuji and Yanaka Cat Street.  Even though they were quite far apart, we managed to make it to both.
We started in the Setagaya ward of Tokyo where the Gotokuji Temple is located.  This area embraced the cat theme and realized that most people were visiting for this temple.  When I approached the visitor information booth at the train station, the ladies immediately asked if I was going to Gotokuji, and provided directions and pamphlets in English for me.

Most temples have a pagoda of some is a three tiered one...

The incense burner...with a cat on top!

Loved how he had his paw on a ball...kept waiting for him to knock it off!

I have always been fascinated with these lanterns.  There are so many styles and sizes.

As we approached the temple, we started finding cats everywhere...even in and on the lanterns.

Gotokuji legend states that a cat beckoned a samurai into a building during a thunderstorm.  Where he was standing was struck by lightening, so the cat saved his life.  This temple only has white cats...some others we will visit have black ones as well.

So this Buddhist temple is the birthplace of the Maneki-neko.

Another cute lantern

Vending machine in Gotokuji area...there are vending machines all over Japan.  I wonder who services them all!

We left Setagaya and headed over to Nippori and Yanaka Cat Street. It took just over an hour to arrive but we were not stores and cat goods everywhere!

Fun statues...

Lots of shopping...thankfully, the street isn't but about two blocks long, or we would have run out of money!

We left cat street and went in search of a cat cafe...found it!  They didn't have cats in this cafe, but they had cute cat shaped sweets...

You could also paint your own Maneki-Neko!!  Here is mine in the works...

Lastly, we headed to Ueno station to trade in our Japan Rail vouchers for actual passes that would start the next day.  We purchased these in America and had to redeem them once in Japan.  We did the rail pass for 14 days, and decided to splurge for the Green car, which is reserved seating.  This pass allows you to ride any JR train, bus, subway, and the Shinkansen trains anywhere you want without additional payment.

We had dinner at the station.  This is a Yuzu Sparkling Cider.  Yuzu is a citrus, I would say it is like a lemon and grapefruit combo in flavor.

We also had Tonkatsu, which is fried port cutlet, and we added a fried prawn to our meal.  It was delicious!

Next week, we head down to Kyoto...

Monday, January 13, 2020

Mancat Monday

The boys and I all had a nice weekend.  The weather is nice and warm here right now, so we took advantage of it.  Storms rolled through Saturday night, but thankful for no damage.
Oliver loves to be he is helping me eat breakfast.  He doesn't care for people food, so he sits politely.

Rusty just chilling in the floor.  

Panthers enjoying the open windows...might as well air out the house!  L-R Harrison, Oliver and Flynn

Oliver checking out a new bag I purchased on ebay.  Guess I could use it as a cat carrier in a pinch!

Monkey see, Monkey do...Rusty is just like his brother!

Flynn chilling out...look at those long arms!

Tomorrow, I'll start back up with the Japan trip.

Monday, January 06, 2020

Mancat Monday

Happy New Year everyone!!  We hope this year will be kind to us all!
Rusty helping me get the packages ready for the post office.

Flynn will have a surprise this year...he has now hit 20 pounds...I see a diet in his future!

Flynn not happy about the year of the Rat!

Harrison being a cutie as always...

Oliver sleeps with me every night, but this past week, Harrison has joined us.  I am loving my bed buddies!

The fish enjoying his new dual leaf I picked up in Japan.

Oliver is a curious boy, and always quick to notice new things in the house.  Normally they are a bit spooky to him.  We did a bunch of purging over the holiday and had some things sitting in the floor before they were packed up and donated.  Oliver wasn't sure about these things...Enjoy his video.