The End

Where do I even begin? That was the most fun and interesting three months of my life. It’s super cliche but I know why people do it. I’ve made so many new friends all around the world and can’t wait to visit them in the future although I think the English ones will be the easiest ones to see for the moment while I work my butt off to get myself out of debt…

Some reasons why I’m happy to be home at the moment.

  1. Not having to live out of a back pack
  2. Access to all my clothes
  3. My cat!

But you don’t want to read that! You want to see what some of my highlights were! Well my friends, you are in luck as below are some of my highlights while I was away.

  1. Getting stoned at Jimmy Eat World when a random guys passed me a joint. I’d never been so high in my life.
  2. Laying in a hammock on a Fiji beach, watching the world go by.
  3. Flying a small plane in New Zealand.
  4. Ross and Athena’s wedding in California.
  5. Climbing the Sydney bridge.
  6. Visiting the glow worm caves in NZ.
  7. HOBBITON!
  8. Singing “I Want It That Way” at open mic nights and at every karaoke opportunity.
  9. Riding 35km on a bike through some beautiful New Zealand scenery with mountains in the background.
  10. Hugging a koala bear.
  11. Japan…I just love that country so much
  12. And of course…everyone I met!

Like I said on the previous post, this page will go on a break until I decide what to do next with it. I’ll probably end up with more food posts as I love eating and of course, when I visit a new country!

Thanks for joining me on this journey šŸ˜˜

Japan tour complete!

So that’s another tour done! I’ve always wanted to go to Japan and it definitely did not disappoint! After another early morning start we were off to the see Bamboo Forest! I’m holding my phone in the second photo as I was video calling my best pal at the time and wanted to include her in the shot haha.

My favourite dog šŸ˜

Once we’d taken enough social media photos of the forest we trekked up a “mountain” to look at monkeys at the aptly named Monkey Mountain.

View of Kyoto from the top of the mountain.

After that we went on an elegant boat ride featuring the beauty of the seasons (their words not mine).

Our final train ride to Osaka (my balls). It was also at this point that I left my bag on a train but Japan being the lovely country that it is I managed to get it back with all my stuff in it. Phew.

Our last speech by our tour guide extraordinaire Jack as we embarked on a food tour which would end in surprise surprise Karaoke! What did I sing? You already know if you’ve been following this blog šŸ˜‰.

Group shot outside the running man sign.

Octopus balls.

Assortment of deep fried meats.

I didn’t take many photos after this as I got very very drunk. Thanks to all the guys on the tour and to our guide Jack who made sure we all had an amazing time. Special shout out to Ben who did my washing twice on this trip for me.

So it’s nearly home time for me! One more country to go and it’s the homeland of Hong Kong. I’m looking forward to seeing some family who I haven’t seen in years and eating dim sum until I explode.

The red torii gates

After an early start we headed to one of the most important shrines in Kyoto, the Fushimi Imari Shrine. It’s famous for its thousands of tori gates and leads into a wooded forest trail.

A quick train ride led us to the next destination which was the Higashiyama District which is one of Kyoto’s best preserved historical district.

The five part act of me drinking from the love fortune which hopefully blesses me with eternal love…something along those lines anyway.

We had a free afternoon so headed to Nari Park which is famous for the deers who bow down to you when they offer you food. The below is the first thing I saw when I got there…

BOOP! Ok this is a short one was its 1am and I really wanted to write something down. I can’t believe I’ve only got one day left of the tour. It has gone really really fast and I’ve made some good friends on it. I was “gifted” tonight with a Japanese pornography magazine which i have promised to take home with me. Really hope I don’t get stopped at customs as it will be an awkward experience.

The way of the samurai

This morning we headed to one of the oldest dojos in Japan where we were going to learn the basics of Kendo – the way of the sword. Our sensei was a fourth generation samurai who had many fascinating stories with my favourite being when his dad taught him the art of seppuku which shocked him enough to stop speaking to his father for over 12 years and move to America to gain western culture. They talk now by the way just in case you’re worried. He definitely picked on me (must be that Asian bond) and I won my 1v1 match against my American friend Dan (that’s revenge for leaving England).

One of the most enjoyable activities I’ve done and I felt like I was shown you the real Japan. I needed a piss just before we started and the lesson was two hours long. You can imagine the relief I felt when I finally was able to relieve myself.

A quick break at home to get freshened up and then we got on a cramped bus to head to Kinkakujicho to visit the golden pavilion temple which was given to the last shogun general. The gardens leading up to it was beautiful as well!

Then it was time to zen out at the Ryogen-In zen temple where they had 5 zen gardens. It was great until I could hear some dude click his SLR camera constantly.

The above is a very well acted photo of what being on the bus was like haha.

Thanks for reading!

Memoirs of a Geisha

I mean, I’ve woken up to worse views in the morning!

We headed to Kyoto in the morning but not before heading to the morning market in Takayama. below you can see a cookie based coffee that I had. It was probably one of the best coffees I’ve had and eating the cup afterwards was a bonus.

Chopsticks with my name on it!!

The long walk to the hostel.

Great name for a shop and yes I went to McDonald’s as well. They had a burger with a hash brown and I couldn’t resist.

We had a tour this evening learning about geisha culture and it was very interesting. Did it make me want to watch the film I mentioned in the subject title? Probably not. We managed to see two of them during our walk and apparently it is very rare that it happens so that made me happy.

The shoes the geishas who are learning have to wear!

Chocolate!

Our amazing bar host!! Yeah two drinks got me a bit merry haha. Tomorrow we are having a kendo lesson with a real Japanese samurai which I know is going to be a once in a lifetime experience.