Visiting the Gassho-zukuri

NUFS' latest excursion sent us blazing across three hours of open highway, to Shirakawa-go and Gokoyama. 

We spent the day visiting Gassho-zukuri, Japanese farmhouses which are at least 250 years old. They are made of wood from the tatami mats to the thatched roof, and completely sustainable. 

The best part is, you were able to walk inside some of them (removing your shoes first, of course). Some of them had exhibits and artifacts from every day life. To see the second level, you had to ascend a thin wooden ladder with steep steps. 

Shirakawa-go was mostly cheesy omiyage shops and cafes. On the map there was a lot to do, such as a nearby onsen, and a famous manor you could enter for an additional fee. However on our student cash and time limit, we barely had enough time for lunch.

My friend and I popped into this little hole-in-the-wall restaurant. The dining room was small, with service for about twenty people. Since the tables were full, my friend and I sat at the bar, next to an older man who was smoking a cigarette nonchalantly. There were just two tenants running the entire shop, including a window for ice-cream and kaki koori (shaved ice). 

My friend opted for the soba set, and I chose 'wild vegetable' udon.

Delicious! I am getting spoiled with this home-made Japanese food. 

I really want to return to the Gassho-zukuri houses on my own, so I can explore, observe and take the time to see it. I especially want to come in the winter, so I can see them covered in snow. I have seen photos, and they're so beautiful!

Wouldn't that be great to see such a sight? Then you could visit the onsen, and I here some of the Gassho-zukuri are run as simple inns where you can stay one night. Ahh, that sounds so cool, but also a little scary! 

To find out more about these amazing houses, visit this link! It explains their structure a lot better than I can.

And now, to move on with the lolita meme. Something I was craving during our sunny field trip!

Day Thirteen
... a picture of your favorite sweets.

photo source

Dango! I never had one until I came to Japan. Now, they are my favorite treat!

Oh, and in my last post, my friend Patrick asked about something on the Sakae Nova shop directory sign. There was something called 古いのコレクト on there, which I couldn't remember seeing. But I went back this week, and found a booth set up behind a curtain. A gothic lolita sat at a table, giving palm and tarot readings for a reasonable rate. There were diagrams of palms tacked on the walls, it was pretty cool! And so, that is what 古いのコレクト referred to.

I'd really like to have my fortune told! But maybe next semester, after my Japanese improves...

The rest of the meme:

Day 1 – 10 things about your lolita bubble.
Day 2 – 10 things you love about lolita.
Day 3 – 10 things you hate about lolita.
Day 4 – 10 different kinds of food you like.
Day 5 – 10 items on your wishlist.
Day 6 – 10 things you can’t live without in lolita.
Day 7 – 10 people who inspire your lolita style.
Day 8 – 10 songs that inspire your inner lolita.
Day 9 – 10 things you will never do in lolita.
Day 10 – What’s in your lolita bag?
Day 11 – A day in your lolita life in pictures.
Day 12 – A picture of yourself before lolita came in to your life.
Day 13 – A picture of your favorite sweets.
Day 14 – A picture of your dream item.
Day 15 – A picture of your last lolita purchase.
Day 16 – Your outfit for the day.
Day 17 – What do you want more then anything right now?
Day 18 – A picture of your favorite lolita style.
Day 19 – What’s in your make-up bag?
Day 20 – A picture of a lolita friend.
Day 21 – Your favorite fictitious lolita.
Day 22 – A picture of your room.
Day 23 – A picture of your handwriting.
Day 24 – A picture of you from a meet.
Day 25 – Your favorite lolita themed artwork.
Day 26 – Your Facebook profile picture.
Day 27 – A song that fits your favorite lolita style.
Day 28 – A picture of the perfect lolita location.
Day 29 – A picture of a lolita you would love to meet for real.
Day 30 – A photo of yourself taken today and 3 good things that have happened over the last 30 days.

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