Best wishes for a rabbity 2011 to you all! On New Year’s Eve, Mewby and I took the advice of John Dougill and visited the Kurodani temple complex to ring out the old and then on to Shimogamo shrine for hatusmode (the first shrine visit of the year). I really have to thank John for suggesting that itinerary. It had been snowing quite heavily on the 31st so Kurodani in particular was really beautiful; all dressed up in white like a fairytale. My pictures hardly do it justice as it really was quite lovely.
A big thank you also to the chap at the bell in Kurodani. We joined the line to ring it and only when we got to the end of the line did we realise we needed a ticket. “Oh, never mind,” he said kindly as the last seconds of 2010 ticked away, “Go ahead and ring it.” So we did.
Here are some more pictures from Shimogamo jinja in the early hours of the New Year. This shrine is so old it predates Kyoto itself!
We took a taxi up to Kurodani and after spending several hours wandering round there and at Shimogamo we took a taxi back into town and had a drink with my buddies at Alphabet Ave. Weirdly the taxi driver we hailed was the same guy each time! Strange things happen in the time between times though. Here’s hoping for many more magical surprises in the year to come!