This was our only full day in Kinosaki-Onsen, and thankfully the weather was perfect. We took advantage by walking all around the town — along streets that looked like this:
. . . but various stores had crabs in tanks . . .
. . . and on boxes in cartoon form . . .
. . . and dried in packages:
I’m tempted to say something snarky, but I live the Upper West Side, and that’s how we are with bagels. Oh, what I would’ve done for a bagel at that point. Or some ice cream:
In addition to all the crab-related products, I noticed another theme while wandering in and out of stores: baseball trinkets. Here’s a collage of six that I saw throughout the day:
(In case you’ve forgotten, 100 yen equals $1.20.)
I should mention that we weren’t walking around aimlessly. We actually had a specific destination. Check it out:
There were two ways to get up there:
1) Walk up the mountain for 30 to 40 minutes.
2) Ride in a cable car for a much shorter time.
I wanted to walk. My mom and half-sister said something along the lines of “HELL NO.” And that was that. Here they are at the entrance to a short-ish staircase that led to the cable car:
This is what the mountain looked like just before we rode up . . .
. . . and here we are at the very top:
See the water on the upper left? That’s the Sea of Japan.
In addition to the view, there was something else at the top that was photo-worthy:
In case you can’t tell, it’s a crab shrine. No joke. These people are obsessed, I tell you. Obsessed! (And I love them for it.)
Here’s a random photo that Martha took, which I have to share because it’s so damn cute.
That little guy and his parents rode the cable car down the mountain with us.
Our afternoon continued with more walking, at times along this canal:
In the photo above, you can see my mom waving on the other side.
Here’s more randomness, which I photographed . . . just because:
Those are drainage/gas/sewer covers. I made sure to photograph them all with my feet in the frames for perspective. As you can see, some are much bigger than others.
As we made our way back to the hotel, I stopped inside this store:
After 10 minutes of browsing, look what I found in one of the many magazines:
It’s an article about Texas Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish, the first page of which (pictured above) appears beside some risqué material. The white boxes that say “censored” weren’t in the magazine; I photoshopped them in because . . . America.
Here are the next two pages of the article:
The whole thing was pretty long, but that’s all I got. Cool to see Darvish as a kid, no?
Not bad, Japan.