In Hiroshima, we visited the Peace Museum. Ms. Matsubara, who survived the bombing, talked to us about her experience and of the bombing and recovery. In the lobby there was a peace sign, and the US was planning for another war.
Then scenes from the Kio-mizu dera Temple, Heian Jingu Shrine and Nijo Castle in Kyoto. We shopped at the Open Air Market, had a serious tofu dinner at the Nanzenji Temple. In the morning, we rode the JR Super Train for Tokyo.
Asimo and the Earth, viewed at the Emerging Technology Museum in Tokyo. More high tech at the Akihabara Electric City district.
Some interesting architecture, and Roppongi HIlls - A 1/1,000 model of Tokyo; a view of a model of the new development, and a view from the top. The Louise Bourgeois spider sculpture, now at Roppongi, and my original view of it at the Tate Modern in London (look in the background, above my head).
Arrived late the next day in Bejing, where we stayed at the very elegant Peace Hotel. Rooms very modern and comfortable. Woke up to the typical view of Beijing smog.
Day one, a tour of the Forbidden City - where 30,000 tourists a day visit! While we posed for our first group photo, a Chinese lady left her friends, giggling, and joined us for the photo. They were having good fun.
A climb up Prospect Hill - where the Forbidden City view disappears in the smog.
A richshaw ride then to lunch in the home of a pair of entrepreneurs in the tourist trade. Wonderful plates of food prepared in a Hutong kitchen. The Hutong is a contrast to the modern parts of the city. We wandered a bit in Tienanmen Square. Ate an amazing duck dinner and saw an acrobatic show.
In a park in Beijing, old-timers were singing in groups. Asked what they were singing, our guide seemed embarassed. They were singing songs from the good old Mao days.
A trip out to the countryside the next day took us to a small-town elementary school. Then to the home of the local party secretary, who also was getting into the tourist business. We had a fantastic lunch, and then saw the kitchen it was cooked in. The tiny, knee-high wood-burning wok was the amazing source of the feast.
Leaving, we had a vew of the countryside, and then, sadly, it was off to the airport and home.
This is only a sampling of the pictures. Others in the group took many interesting ones.
Wish I could return. There is so much more to experience.
Click each picture to view it larger.