This past weekend, SMS and I headed out to the Fuji Five Lakes region to explore a new area and, in SMS' case, take beautiful pictures of Mt. Fuji (Fuji-san). We were going to go to Tokyo but we decided to branch out and see someplace new. Of course, we've seen Mt. Fuji a lot (and even hiked it) but it was very beautiful to see it from the shores and hills around Lake Yamanaka.
|It IS shaped like a whale!|
I went to the office holiday party on Friday afternoon, which was a nice gathering featuring lots of cookies. Although I had fun, I wanted to get out of there to hit the road! SMS and I left the apartment around 4 p.m. and apart from a small amount of traffic east of Yokohama, we were in the clear.
|My new favorite chair! It may not be much to look at but it's awesome!|
|View from our room!|
|First, find this market (near Fuji-Q). Next, eat tacos.|
|This was an amazing hike!|
After the hike, we went to the photo spot for SMS to set up. He had a clear view of Fuji-san and it really happy with his photography set-up there. Apparently we were really lucky because the innkeeper said that Fuji had been obscured for the last 4 weeks. Hooray for perfectly timed trips!
We warmed up with an early dinner of Yoshida udon, the traditional pilgrim's meal. The udon is characterized as "thick and chewy" and the noodles are a little more flat and wide than regular udon. It was considered a purifying food (white noodles, clear broth). It was tasty, especially with the addition of kobocha squash.
That night, we decided that we would go back to the photo spot in the morning to take advantage of the "alarm clock filter," aka, the beautiful light at sunset. Sunday came and it was cold, but SMS had another great photo session. I took some pretty pictures of a swan that swam towards us although I started to get scared as it got really close. I know that sounds ridiculous but after seeing geese attacks in Newport, RI, bigger birds scare me! (God forbid I ever see an emu or ostrich!).
|A foot onsen at a museum- brilliant! See all the people coming in to join me?|
On the way home, we stopped at Ebina SA, "The World's Best Rest Stop," as proclaimed by SMS. We shared a nikuman (Chinese steamed bun), dumplings, a sushi rice bowl and an affogato. Eclectic but all of it was wonderful. There was no traffic on the way back and we hung out at home for the rest of the afternoon/evening. It was a wonderful mini-holiday and I had a great time. Next up, Christmas decorating and shopping!