One of my favorite things about the Navy is how frequently paths will cross with former shipmates. Even in Japan. Eric, who was the Command Master Chief at SWOSU for about a year while Dave was the CO, was here in Yokosuka attending a conference. Dave and I met up with him last night for dinner in Yokosuka.

The conference ended on Wednesday and Eric’s flight didn’t leave until Friday morning. That gave him all of Thursday to explore and experience a short one-day Julia tour around Kamakura.

I decided anyone who visits must see the Diabatsu, the giant Buddha of Kamakura.

I mean the giant Buddha is just so chill and such a Japanese experience. I like to think of the Diabatsu as the Willis Tower of Japan! Except cheaper and not as tall. Haha

I decided I would take Eric to the Diabatsu via a hike. Dina was able to join us for our adventure. I took them on the hike I did a couple months ago, The Trail With 4 Buddhas. On our way to the trail, we made a quick stop at my favorite temple, Jōchi-ji, for a quick visit to see the God of Happiness, Hotei.

It was a lovely early spring day.

When we reached the Kuzuharaoka Shrine, Dina saw this sign.

We decided we all needed to throw a dish at the rock!

And so we did! Be gone malign influences, impurities, and obstacles!!

My throw might have been a little overzealous. Parts of the dish ricocheted at me.

We continued on our hike and eventually made our way to Diabatsu. How could Buddha possibly be spelled wrong!?!

And we made it!

With photos taken as proof of our visit, it was time for lunch! Eric’s request was ramen. Google Maps helped us find a little ramen shop off the beaten path and absolutely delicious.

After lunch, we made our way back to Kamakura. In Kamakura, Dina headed home. Eric and I walked through Komachi Dori and made our way to the Tsurugaoka Hachimangū Shrine.

As always, my first thought is – “so many people!” Second thought, “don’t these people have to work!?”

I was super happy to be able to incorporate a hike into my Julia tour today. Unfortunately, it wasn’t clear enough to see Mt. Fuji. Maybe when you visit and we go hiking, it will be clear enough to see her!