After visiting the exhibition at the Sanno Club in the morning, we explored various places around Yuza with my friend from Yuza Board of Education, Hideo Abe (he's now the teaching supervisor for the JET teacher, and perfect for the job). First we went to the Aoyama House, one of my favourite old houses around Yuza and always on the 'must-see' list. There are photos of my visit in May here. The house is always decorated appropriately for the season, so now the summer screens are installed instead of the paper shoji in some rooms.
The summer noren are gauzy, probably asa (hemp).
The kakejiku scrolls are chosen for a feeling of coolness, like this waterfall.
This beautiful summer irotomesode kimono seemed to be in perfect condition, despite being 100 years old.
The Aoyama house was used recently for some of the locations in the first part of the movie remake of 'Oshin'. There were some clothes where you could dress up like someone out of the movie. The straw raincoats are so heavy.
I dressed Emily for the part.
The house has a very fine example of a typical Shonai roof style.
In one of the kura, there was an exhibition of c1900 summer kimono.
Emily in the garden.
We visited a small but perfect private garden that is open to the public, near Uwadera village.
I love the purple hydrangeas, a flower that always makes me think of summer in Japan.
There was a bees' nest in one of the trees.
We visited the shrine at Uwadera, where I last went for the festival at the beginning of May. It was so quiet this time. When it was the festival, there were thousands of people there.
This lizard was enjoying the sunshine.
The way the corners are made on a shrine veranda (hisashi) is interesting - the boards are arranged rather like sunrays (an idea for a quilt corner?)
The rafter construction is also magnificent. The carvings are some of the best in this region.
These smaller shrines were at the edge of the forest, near the main shrine.
The main shrine building or haiden. You can really believe you have gone back in time 200 years here. It was recently used for a movie location - the shoot took place last month.
Hideo told us that the director shot one of the fight sequences under the veranda.
You can read more about Japanese shrines here.
At Kataribenoyakata, a restored minka farmhouse - more photos from my last trip here.
At Maruike-sama, the blue pool near Mount Chokai - we went there in May too. This time, there were so many mosquitoes and buyo (the Japanese version of the Scottish midge!) that we couldn't stay long.
We also had a short visit to the shrine at Fukura, where Glyn and I watched the Hanagasa mai festival last May.
Finally we watched the sun set at the Sixteen Disciples of Buddha - Juroku rakan iwa at Fukura. I found this info on another blog with gives more details of the history (and more visible disciples too) - click here.
Hideo and I made the comment that, in life, sometimes 'you only come this way once'. Although I lived in Yuza for a year and have visited many times, I have never seen the Juroku rakan looking so beautiful in the sunset.