Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Outdoor Happenings

The kind of Spring that my Californian sensibility longs for (a warm, sunburn worthy, whimsical dress-wearing one) has finally hit Kagoshima. So we hit Nichinan beach, a couple hours north of Kagoshima in Miyazaki prefecture. Near Nichinan is Udo Jingu (shrine), which I think is by far one of the most beautiful shrines I have been to in Japan.

You walked a path right along the cliffs that leads down the the main shrine which is inside of a sea cave!

It's hard to see in this picture, but there is a hole in this rock that you try to throw blessed clay stones into from the cliff above. Women throw with their right hand and men throw with their left hand (because women need all the help they can get?). If you make it in, then you know, eternal happiness and good luck and all that jazz. And I made it!
The shrine inside the cave. So cool and nice in there...
A different weekend, a different outdoor excursion! A canola flower snack!
Takachiho gorge!
Lounging by the river. Oh river nap, you are so nice!

An early Saturday morning, heading out to the beach... and wild dachshund attack! There were at least four wiener dogs in this car who all wanted to jump out and bite our ankles. I can still hear their barking ringing in my ears as we sped off.
A pachinko (annoying Japanese fake gambling) parlour that I drive past every morning on my way to school. It reminds me of an aging casino in Carson City, Nevada, and that makes me like it. What a tragedy that they don't have breakfast buffets or lobster and steak dinners in pachinko parlours.
These are pictures of 2 out of the 3 legit cheese sources in my city. Now you know how dire my situation is. Gone are the days of artisanal goat cheese and farmer's market splurges.
Holding the largest block of cheese available. Not very large. Also called "Extra Extra Mild Cheddar," which isn't good news. Most cheese that Japanese people eat comes pre-shredded and is labeled either "pizza cheese," "cooking cheese" or "toast cheese." I can never figure out which one sounds better or will meet my cheese needs most appropriately. I am now used to paying at least $10 for a wedge of cheese that is too minuscule to do anything with but take small nibbles of.

Mostly, I try not to think about cheese.


Scott said...

Ah, Kelly!

Everything about this seems extremely pleasant.

It's always comforting to learn that good people are doing good things.

Darcy said...

I was thinking it might be nice to make some fresh cheese with milk. Not that I've ever done it! But I hear it's easy.