Kobe and some Okayama

by Naranatsuo July. 16, 2010 2093 views

Before heading off to my two week stay in Okayama, a friend of my host family, Tani-san, offered to drive me and my host mom to Kobe. Unfortunately there was a lot of traffic and our stay got cut short, but it was still fun. We walked down a shopping street and my host mom and Tani-san bought some soap that I said my mom liked from Lush. Afterwards, we ate lunch. We searched for a place with Kobe beef, but most places were closed for lunch and only opened for dinner… so we settled for another place that served stir fried Kobe beef… not quite the same, but I guess I can say I've had Kobe beef now. haha.
On the 17th, I went to my homestay in Okayama. They are a family of six and live in a rural part of Okayama surrounded by rice patties. They have two daughters and two sons. The oldest son, Yoshiya (27) is away at college but I saw him at a summer camp that I was a counsellor at the next weekend. Next is the oldest daughter (25) Hatsuo (or Ha-chan for short) who is a kindergarten teacher and lives with her parents still. Next is the youngest brother, Yuzuru (21) who is going to college. Last is the youngest daughter, Mami (20) who works at a clothing store in the city. My host father, Yuzuru-kun and Ha-chan brought me to Koraku park and Okayama castle the next day after my arrival.

Covered shopping street in Kobe.

Tani-san and me eating Kobe Beef.

We went to a cafe later and had dessert. I had a chocolate parfait, while Tani-san and my host mom had green tea ice cream with zeri (Japanese jello, made with seaweed)

Koraku-en

Okayama-jo

Me posing with Yuzuru-kun and Ha-chan with Okayama-jo in the background.

Rice at Koraku-en

Love the level of color contrast in this picture…… sooooo hottttt though. A blue sky in the Japanese summer is a terrible thing. haha

Koi fish

It was hot out so all of these Koi were trying to find some shade under that bush….. not the prettiest sight. Haha

These guys were happy in another pond in the shade.

Walking across the river to get to Okayama-jo

Picture of Koraku-en from the top of Okayama-jo

Ornament on the roof of Okayama-jo. Its real gold.

Of course I had to take a picture of something before finding out that no pictures were allowed. In this case it was the armor of a samurai.

Posing in a carriage. Its the kind that people carried on their backs. Fun times eh?

Out in front of Okayama-jo

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