18 August 2004

Trip to 紀伊半島 (Kii peninsula, Japan) on 12-17 August 2004

Source and photos: http://horizons.free.fr/seikatsu/eng/memories/2004-08-12_jp-ise.htm

Panorama with 那智滝 (Tachi waterfalls) at 熊野古道 (Kumano Kodo) I enjoyed a week of holidays following the coast of 紀伊半島 (Kii peninsula, Japan) by train on 12-18 August 2004 to explore Japan, accompanied by 治子 (Haruko).

We started in 伊勢志摩 (Ise-shima), visiting the two parts of the famous 伊勢神宮 (Ise shrine) and glancing at 夫婦岩 (Wedded Rocks) in the nearby 二見 (Futami). We then rode South, enjoying the beaches of 串本 (Kushimoto) on a sunny warm day, and walking the holy path of 熊野古道 (Kumano Kodo) to reach the impressive 那智滝 (Tachi waterfalls). For my birthday, I swam for the first time with dolphins in 太地 (Taiji) at ワールド・ドルフィンリゾート (World Dolphin Resort).

We then rode North, breathing oceanic air at 三段壁 (3 Step Cliff) in 白浜 (Shirahama) and visiting the nearby 三段壁洞窟 (Sandanbeki cavern), which formerly sheltered pirates. During a short visit in 京都 (Kyoto), we watched the memorable 大文字 (Daimonji), Japanese characters burning at night in the mountains every year for 御盆 (Festival of the Dead). To finish our trip, we visited Himeji castle in 姫路 (Himeji) and small streets in 神戸 (Kobe).

15 May 2004

Sanja festival in 浅草 (Asakusa, Japan) on 15 May 2004

Source and photos: http://horizons.free.fr/seikatsu/eng/memories/2004-05-15_jp-tokyo_asakusa-matsuri.htm

Yakuza with a fan on a 御神輿 (portable shrine) in 浅草 (Asakusa) I saw–and recognized as such–members of the やくざ (Japanese mafia) for the first time in 東京 (Tokyo, Japan) during the 三社祭 (Sanja Festival) held on 15 May 2004. During this annual festival, crowds carry for a few hours 御神輿 (portable shrines) in the streets of the 浅草 (Asakusa) area, which requires much endurance, in honor of the gods. This time, we could see for a short duration almost naked やくざ (yakuzas) riding portable shrines, their tattoos clearly visible...

18 April 2004

Horseback archery at 鶴岡八幡宮 (Tsurugaoka Hachiman-Gu, Japan) on 18 April 2004

Source and photos: http://horizons.free.fr/seikatsu/eng/memories/2004-04-18_jp-kamakura_yabusame.htm

Archer on his horse at 鶴岡八幡宮 (Tsurugaoka Hachiman-Gu) I saw 流鏑馬 (horseback archery) for the first time at 鶴岡八幡宮 (Tsurugaoka Hachiman-Gu) in 鎌倉 (Kamakura, Japan) by pure chance on 18 April 2004, in company of 治子 (Haruko) and François. Local music and modern dances preceded the archery contest, generating a festive atmosphere. Archers were difficult to see as they rode a long alley bordered with trees and spectators but we managed to reach a place where we could see the target and final action.

09 April 2004

Sumo wrestling at 靖国神社 (Yasukuni shrine, Japan) on 09 April 2004

Source and photos: http://horizons.free.fr/seikatsu/eng/memories/2004-04-09_jp-tokyo_sumo.htm

Grasping sumo wrestlers at 靖国神社 (Yasukuni shrine) I saw my first fight of 相撲取り (sumo wrestlers) outdoors at 靖国神社 (Yasukuni shrine) in 東京 (Tokyo, Japan) on 09 April 2004, as a tribute to my cultural education in Japan. I appreciated the fights as well as the setting: sunny weather and free seats.

03 April 2004



In this blog, you will explore my personal world since April 2004 through exceptional notices, descriptions of travels and events in several continents (including Asia and Europe), and reflexions about topics of interest (including cultures and religion). I hope you will appreciate your time here, enjoy the stories and photos, maybe organize trips or start activities accordingly, and will share pieces of your own life with those who may appreciate or benefit from it. If we know each other, I wish you will know and understand me better after reading a few posts.

You are all welcome to leave comments at the bottom of the posts. However, please indicate your sources or background when appropriate either for me or other readers.

Wishing you all pleasant and enriching moments,

DUVAL Sébastien