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Himeji Castle Japan


Monday, February 25, 2008

The castle entrance.

I did not sleep well last night, not sure way. I got up at 4:30 and worked on the computer. When Julia woke up we had our (what has become normal breakfast) at Starbucks then took the fast train to Himeji to see the Himeji Castle. It was a quick trip and the castle was really worth the visit. It was started in 1333 and completed in 1601. Every temple, castle, or shrine we visit has claimed to be the biggest wooden building in the world but this one might well be it.

Here is a bit of trivia, Julia's mum's and David's home was built in the 16th century so was already built as the castle was being finished.

What it might have looked like living in the castle.

The thought occurred to us as we took the tour of the castle and explored the interior that you really had to have a castle in those days as someone was always wandering around wanting to take whatever it was you had. So if you were lucky enough to be able to build your own world you better had surrounded it with a castle or lose it.

On our way out to another noodle place for lunch we saw a tree manicuring in progress. Here is a picture of men with scissors snipping at the leaves.

From Julia: Again we were struck by how freezing cold it was inside the castle compared to outside (which was cold enough anyway). There didn"t seem to be any real comfy or luxurious living quarters in the place; it seemed as if life was all military work and no play. The women were locked up in a special part and the rest seemed to be used to store guns and rocks. There were holes everywhere in the walls for throwing anything at hand, such as rocks, boiling oil, and other nasty stuff at any silly idiot who tried to climb the walls.

Tomorrow we leave Kyoto for Hiroshima.


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