Thursday was another beautiful Autumn day that warranted getting out for a little leaf peeping. I caught a morning train to the Bunkyo area on the north side of Tokyo. Once again, I arrived with an onigiri and was able to eat lunch at the garden. Simultaneously, thanks to modern technology, I could chat on my phone untethered to wifi and for free with my friend Sara in the U.S. all while sitting on a bench in a Tokyo garden. It was great catching up with you, my friend!!
Now, back to the beautiful garden. The Rikugien Garden is a traditional Japanese garden. The garden highlighted the natural landscape of the area and incorporated water elements. This small section of water was actually part of a very large pond.
I spent about an hour and a half wandering through the many paths within the garden. One path took me up a small hill. The view from the top was beautiful. I was a little early to see the peak Autumn foliage. Instead I only had a peek.
The island is also an important part of the traditional Japanese garden. Typically, entry to the island is not permitted. The large island in Rikugien is made of weathered rocks with a single pine tree. This island represents Mount Horai, the legendary home of the Eight Immortals.
Stone lanterns are also significant in a traditional Japanese garden. Originally, they were used to line the path to a shrine. Within the garden, they are decorations used to remind visitors of the passing of time.
I truly enjoyed my afternoon. Please don’t get mad at me for saying this, I’m starting to get into the Christmas spirit! I know, it’s not Thanksgiving yet. However, the Japanese don’t observe Thanksgiving. Instead, it’s straight to Christmas and Christmas decorations. Christmas decorations are starting to appear everywhere and I just can’t help but get excited when I see this Christmas tree!