When in Rome…

“When in Rome, do as the Romans do” they say, so today I joined all Kyotoians on their sunday-afternoontrip in the direction of Nara. And all Naraians went on their sunday-afternoontrip in the direction of Kyoto. And because it was very sunny and wonderful weather, they all met somewhere in the middle in a town called Uji. So: yes, it was crowded. All tourists. But wait! What am I? Ah, a tourist! Then I can relax and join the crowds. So I got myself a lunchbox from the local sushi-dealer, followed the road (and the other people with lunchboxes) and we all had lunch under the crerryblossoms at the banks of the river, flowing through the city. It was great!

Uji is famous (in Japan) as a city, mentioned in the Japanese classic book “Tale of Genji” (or: Genji Monogatari) – more than 1000 years old – and there are many sites in the city referring to the book. But the weather was much to go into any museum. Maybe next time….

Oh, I almost forgot: Uji is also very famous for their green tea. On the island, in the middle of the river, was a big fair with loads of stands selling tea and tea-utensils to have your own tea-ceremony. There was also a performance of a traditional-music group: drums, flutes, dancers. They were great! Musically it was a bit of a mess, but they drew the kids onto the stage and had all people joining in their dance. Fun guaranteed!

In Uji is also the Byodo-In Temple, which is on the Japanese 10-Yen-coins. Very impressive!