Day two of our honeymoon in Kyoto can’t be shoved into one post. It just can’t. First up, I’ll talk about my two favorite/most picture heavy activities from the day: Arashiyama Bamboo Forest & Monkey Park Iwatayama.
Kyoto’s Bamboo Grove in Arashiyama
This place is all over Pinterest and a billion or so “must see before you die” lists that end up on Buzzfeed and clickbait websites. As I’ve told my husband, “You only Kyoto once” (YOKO). We had to check it out.
But first, let me take
a selfie an ice cream cone.
These ice cream cones are all over the tourist areas of Kyoto, and I had been eyeballing them TOO LONG during our first day. The top swirl and inside of the cone is a sweet, decadent deliciousness that the signs call “silky tofu”. That middle scoop is gelato. They had tons of flavors but the signs in the display didn’t have English, so I picked strawberry to be on the safe side. It wasn’t until after she began making my cone that I saw that there were cool flavors like currant and red bean. Oh well!
I took a few bites but then made the hubs hold it as I snapped a jillion photos while attempting to keep the crowds out of my shots. Remember, this week is the busiest of the year!
When we made it to the end of the grove, we headed toward the Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama. As we were following the map and crossing a bridge, we saw this mountain:
I had told Mark that the park was at the top of a hill and is the location of the monkey’s natural habitat, and during our approach he was all, “We aren’t climbing that mountain, are we?!” To which I replied, “Of course not! It said a hill, that totally looks like a mountain.” (Hashtag: HoustonianProblems) We paid at the bottom of the “hill” and on our way up, we started to believe that we indeed were climbing a mountain. It was one hell of a hike, and it had some great views. However, one of the few posted rules was no photos on the way up, so I have none.
AND THEN THERE WERE MONKEYS.
This was so exciting to me. SO EXCITING. The monkeys totally ruled the joint, and you could feed them as long as you were inside and you did so through a chicken wire covered window, to be sure they didn’t bite your fingers off.
I told you I was excited! I know, not a flattering picture. That girl behind me thought I was a hilarious, and I’m sure she thinks Americans are rediculous now. Little does she know, my ridiculousness is excessive in any culture.
Her mom talked me into trying to shake the monkey’s hand. I referred to the English rules and had a hunch it wasn’t right, but she was so convincing! I reached out and touched the monkey’s hand and he slapped my hand in disgust!
…I don’t know if they were trying to be mean to me or not, it doesn’t seem very nice. But I did what I always do when people laugh at me: I laughed too! I’m happy to bring people joy, even if the intention is for it to be at my expense.
Once Mark got a hold of the monkey food, he handed it to the monkey more quickly than he could eat it. The monkey just kept shoving everything in his mouth. If anyone ever wonders why I’ve gained so much weight over the years I’ve dated Mark, I give you the following photographs: