I was at about 70% today, but I was good enough to go.
I decided to keep my plans simple. First off would be Senso-ji in Asakusa.
On the way there, I had to change trains at Asakusabashi station. So I took a photo.
I got to Asakusa, and headed to Senso-ji. It’s a nice place to visit. The Kaminarimon is a must-see. It’s the big gate in front of the temple with the massive red lantern hanging down. It’s the sort of thing us goofy tourists from all over want our picture taken in front of.
As you pass through the Kaminarimon, you’ll see a vast expanse of souvenir shops selling, all kinds of trinkets, just like every other famous sight in Japan. This row of shops is called Nakamise Dori, and it’s been around for a really long time:
Closing in on the Houzoumon:
Now we’re approaching the Houzoumon, or Treasure House Gate. The gate is surrounded by many paper lanterns today:
Inside the Houzoumon, there are two Touro lanterns, and the one big red Chouchin.
As I pass through the Houzomon, I see more lanterns:
Then on to the temple proper. The big main building is called the hondo. That’s where you pray. You’ll see a big pot-thing filled with incense and billowing out smoke. You’re supposed to rub smoke on whatever ails you, so I just walked through the entire cloud, because I was hurting all over.
Facing the Houzoumon, you can see the smoke better:
After that, I sauntered over to the side, where they sell omikuji for 100 yen, and I got #69, which is… kyou, which means “bad luck,” (å‡¶ so you can recognize it.) It said that I wouldn’t have any luck finding a job, in relationships, etc., etc.
I did what any smart person would do. I tied it to one of the racks you’re supposed to tie bad luck fortunes to. *Whew* Dodged that bullet.
In order to counteract any ill effects from the kyou, I picked up a good health and safe travel charm for 1000 yen, and I picked the red one, because red is a lucky color. I started to pick white, then I stopped and said, “Iie, akai onegaishimasu.” The lady behind the counter laughed.
So with my charm obtained, I wandered around the temple some more, took a few pictures, then went to the long row of tacky souvenir shops. I spent a good 20-30 minutes just looking around at crap, and buying some, too.
A tall building:
On the way out:
On to Akihabara, in Part Two…