Thursday, 29 March 2007
I did not sleep well at all last night. I think it was due to the backpack stressing my shoulders. After packing a little, we wandered for breakfast and ended up at Mister Donut again. This time we brought our food back to the room to eat. We checked out promptly at eleven. I had not realized how expensive our stay was (nearly six hundred dollars), and wished we had taken the robes that were provided with the room. Instead of searching for our next hotel, we decided to put our luggage in a locker at the station. However, they were all full, so we took them with us on a rapid service train that passed through Kobe. The train ride was longer than expected, taking over an hour to reach Maiko station. We passed through beautiful mountains on our right with the ocean inching closer on the left. Maiko station is right on the beach under the bridge that loomed above us. Hoyt took care of the luggage to give my body a rest; I felt really bad not helping much, but it was a welcome relief at the same time. Too bad we were unable to store them, but the promenade to the bridge required us to, and they had lockers. The promenade is built under the bridge with a small viewing room with café in the middle. Hoyt befriended a woman whose brother helped engineer the building. I waited for our food as they spoke, me being shy about speaking to others. Hoyt had a fried shrimp sandwich while I had four odd potstickers, some with squid or octopus (I can never tell). The last half of the promenade in the floor that we found amusing. What I am still not sure about was the woman Hoyt spoke to gave us some parsley. I think she was being friendly, but she handed it to me, not Hoyt. I am never good at accepting gifts, and I think she thought Hoyt was my brother. I suppose we look slightly similar in hair color. I don’t know! Afterwards, we went to the Exhibition Center where we got a tour from one of the bridgemasters who helped design the bridges! We spent almost three hours though, so I was getting a little sore from standing and all the information. He was very kind though, and he gave us several postcards when he found out we were on our honeymoon. The train ride back was terrible. We started or a local, which hit every stop. Then two very packed trains before finding space on a rapid to Kyoto. It was dark by the time we arrived, so we found a taxi who brought us right to the front door of the Sunroute Hotel. It is actually a good location near the Philosopher’s Walk, Gion, and the places we visited earlier — Imperial Palace, and Handicraft Center. I should have planned this out better! We had some troubles with the room rates. Rie may have quoted much lower than actuality. The manager said he would investigate further tomorrow. The room itself had a bad initial impression on me, being small and having fairly obsolete furniture. We did just come from the Granvia though, so it started to grow on me. We fell asleep right around nine.