I am losing track of the days, in case it isn’t obvious already!
I also am in total shock that my time here in Japan is almost over. I’ve been trying to make the most of my time here, so I’ve been up early in the morning and going to bed late. It’s beginning to take a toll on me, especially with the summer heat wave draining me even more of my energy. But I must do what needs to be done to make sure I can make the most of the little time that I have left.
Anyway, my professor set up a fun optional day trip for us to attend this weekend! He got us all bus passes to go to the bamboo forest and monkey park. We had to arrive at Kyoto station at 8 A.M. sharp to make our journey over there. He promised that getting there early would mean less tourists, which means better pictures. He was right, so having to wake up at 6:30 A.M. was worth it. I got some good pictures!
The train ride and short walk to the forest was a piece of cake, and the forest itself was beautiful. It was just how I imagined it would be; tall bamboo shoots, sunlight passing through the small spaces of bamboo, and most importantly, shade. Oh how I loved the shade! The sun that day was really strong and I felt like I was melting. But thankfully the shade that the bamboo provided eased the heat.
Walking through the bamboo forest was blissful and allowed me to check off another thing off my life bucket list. I feel so lucky to have been able to witness something so beautiful. Anyway, as we were walking through the forest, we were also making our way to the entrance to the monkey park. Now, I’ve always been terrified of monkeys. Don’t ask me why, because I have no idea. I guess their appearance just makes makes me feel uneasy. But I figured, everyone else was going to go see them and I guess trying to overcome a fear would be a great challenge for me, so I did it.
The hike up to the park itself was brutal. The heat was making me feel a bit dizzy despite my 2 liter bottle of water by my side at all times, and I did have to take breaks while making my way up there. I was one of the last ones of our group to make it to the park, but I didn’t really care. I still made it!
The first thing to greet me were the monkeys… And I was really feeling the anxiety kick in. I spent most of my time inside a small wooden room with a screen, viewing the monkeys from inside because I just felt so anxious having them pass by my feet.
I built up the courage to feed one monkey a banana. Her hand was a bit cute, but I still was feeling some bad anxiety doing it. Would I do it again though? Absolutely. Even though I felt anxious, I still feel that the experience was worth it.
We spent quite some time viewing the monkeys and watching the employees feed them. The anxiety I had though initially didn’t fully go away until we were making our way down from the monkey park.
After the monkey park, me and a few of my classmates went to a local restaurant to get some traditional Japanese food. I had a dish that included rice, egg, and beef. It was really tasty!
After our meal we took the train and a long bus ride home. Since the heat wave was really kicking in at this time; a lot of people were taking the bus so making it home took a long time. We all ended up taking a three hour nap once we got home!
It was a great nap.
Till next time!