Sunday, November 13, 2011

Home from Japan

I am home from my big trip to Japan. I want to thank everyone who left a comment on my last blog post... wishing me a good safe trip. I had a wonderful time. In Japan, we spent our first 2 nights in Osaka at a ryokan... a traditional Japanese Inn... this one is Carpe Diem. Our room below had tatami mats on the floors, where we slept on padded mats. The only furniture in the room was a low table. The wood/paper doors slid open and closed. We arrived late at night...

and in the morning this is the view we woke up to... our room was surrounded by the most beautiful Japanese gardens... the weather was sunny and warm...


there were stone bridges...


which I sat on...

the pine trees were large and twisty and bonsai-like


There were stone lanterns everywhere...


there were rocks and paths and water basins...

From Osaka, we took a train for a day trip to the town of Nara. Most of Nara's sights, including temples, shrines and their famous 1200 deer... are concentrated in Nara Park. According to legend, the god of Kasuga Taisha came riding a white deer in the old days, so the deer enjoy protected status as envoys of the god.

The deer are very tame and because people can buy deer "cookies" to feed them, the deer hang around the temples and the food venders.. hoping to be fed the special treats.

Nara Park is home to several large temples. Below is Nigatsu-do, which had very large lanterns hanging.
Kasuga Taisha is a shrine that is worth visiting because it has hundreds and hundreds of stone lanterns... lining the path toward the temple.

So we spent our first day in Nara Park... surrounded by deer, stone lanterns... shrines and temples. It was the perfect wonderful beginning of my returning pilgrimage to Japan.

"The deep parts of my life pour onward,
as if the river shores were opening out.
It seems that things are more like me now...
--- Rainer Maria Rilke

I think that one's art is a growth inside one.
I do not think one can explain growth.
It is silent and subtle.
One does not keep digging up a plant
to see how it grows.
--- Emily Carr

45 comments:

Anonymous said...

Before I even scrolled down to Rilke's poem, I had the thought that you'd found big parts of yourself in your journyes through Japan. I smiled to myself, when I read, "It seems that things are more like me now". I think that is everyone's dream, his or her hope. I'm glad for you that you have found yours.

Seth said...

What a glorious start to your trip Donna. These images and your descriptions only add to my desire to travel to Japan. One of these days for sure. Looking forward to the next post.

ZenDotStudio said...

Oh my goodness, to wake up to that garden! It looks like you had a wonderful trip. I look forward to hearing more about it and the treasures you found. Glad you have returned home safe and sound! (to sleep in your own comfy bed) ah the pleasures of home too!

Ruth Armitage said...

Welcome home! I'm so glad your trip was everything you'd dreamed. Thank you so much for the beautiful gifts :) They arrived today! Your photos remind me of your own garden in many ways... refined and elegant.

eb said...

oh my!
gardens,
deer,
lanterns
and
so much quiet beauty
enjoy your trip...

xox - eb.

eb said...

ahhhhhhhh...
you ARE home
welcome home
rest...

xox - eb.

ArtPropelled said...

I can feel my body relax reading your post ..... as if the river shores were opening out. Wonderful images... memories ..... ideas brewing. Love your collage and all the lanterns. Thanks so much for sharing Donna. I can't wait to see more!

Sandra said...

ooooooh, this sounds beautiful. i'm glad you had an inspired trip. i've never been in japan, maybe i should think about it :) greetings, sandra

Magdalena said...

ooooh, you had an incredible trip...i love those stone latterns...and the garden ...and i think I love everything about this post...

have a lovely day!

grrl + dog said...

your words have a calm feel, like you are the essence of a temple,

I'm enjoying tagging along on your trip, and witnessing your soul being nourished.

Delwyn said...

Hi Donna
what a great start to your trip.
I love Nara, the great Daibutsu and the deer...the small shinto shrines tucked into the forest and the art gallery...

Barry said...

D-so glad for you that you had such a magical time immersing yourself in the beautiful surrounds of Japanese gardens and temples. Thank you for your photos that remind me again why I so love that aesthetic. Go well. B

Fiona Dempster said...

So glad the time away was refreshing and renewing Donna; those surrounds just feed and nurture our souls. I love the top collage - so gentle, grey and balanced.

lyle baxter said...

ps I like the Emily Carr quote! and-- thank you for looking at my crazieness! I have fun with the nightly drawing practice

Cynthia Schelzig said...

What wonderful captures...I feel like I just went on a quick trip to Japan...love your piece at the top too. Have a great start to your week ahead and welcome back!

Seraphina´s Phantasie said...

Wonderful photos from your journey to Japan. Beautiful work. Thank you very much for sharing this.

Sue said...

It sounds and looks as if you had a marvellous time in Japan, probably a feeling like coming home... I'm sure you are now full of inspiration, pictures, ideas - I look forward to seeing new artwork coming out of this journey.
Thank you so much for your kind comment about my encaustic trials.

diane said...

Thank you, Donna -- I've been transported. The photos are beautiful and I hope we'll see many more in future posts.

mano said...

what a wonderful post about a great journey. all pictures are very impressive. and I love your collage!

mansuetude said...

Everything in perfect harmony and quiet; everything so "you" and my fav is that path image and you on the bridge. Beautiful old world.

Jann Gougeon said...

What a wonderful experience! It was also a wonderful experience to see your beautiful surroundings in your previous post.

Judy Martin said...

Thank you for showing us some of your visit to Japan.

And thank you also for that Emily Carr quote. One does not keep digging up a plant to see how it grows. I hadn't thought of that before. The mystery we each have, yes, but not the idea of leaving it alone.

Carole said...

Thanks for sharing. Emily Carr's quote is thought provoking.

Susan - said...

The inn you stayed at is beautiful. Thank you for sharing these lovely photos. I would love to visit Japan and the Kasuga Taisha shrine looks amazing.

Lisa said...

Welcome home Donna. Pure serenity...a beautiful inn in such an extraordinary place...one that i've always wanted to visit. The garden at the inn reminds me of your own lovely backyard. I'm so glad your trip was delightful and all that you hoped it would be...thank you for sharing.

nancy neva gagliano said...

your pilgrimage brings you to and from your homes,
here and there, and always inside you...
will you rewalk that path with the stone lanterns
over and over again in dreams...?
and
wake to walk
the path you've created in your own temple.

Valerianna said...

Beautiful, did they light all the lanterns at night?
Love that last quote... really something.

Renee Howell said...

oh gosh, this is beautiful. I'm coming back to visit again tomorrow. Time for me to get some sleep. Thanks to your post, I'll have some peace filled visions to dream about.

Donna Iona Drozda said...

So very glorious.

Lanterns and deer and temples, stone bridges and bonsai-like sculpted pines...how gorgeous.

I so look forward to seeing more of your journey...welcome home.

I love the mention of a white deer...I saw a pure white fawn with its mother walking quietly along side a country road back in August....magical.

Sharon said...

Magnificent.

r.bohnenkamp said...

Hi Donna, many thanks for the beautiful photos of your trip.
Your work reflects the peace of Japanese gardens back.
I'm thrilled.
best, Ralf

Ian Foster said...

Thank you for your photographs of a beautiful place, I look forward to seeing some newly inspired collages in the future.

Velma said...

it looks, donna, like you had an auspicious first morning, what a sight to wake up to. how beautiful these photos are.

Sally Tharpe Rowles said...

How lovely. I am so glad you had such a wonderful trip.... & that you can now share it with all of us. I look forward to the journey.

sukipoet said...

thank you for sharing these amazing places, photos and aspects of your adventure. how lucky the "we" of we enjoys the same things you do. i love the vicarious travel, most likely i will never go to Japan!

Di said...

How beautiful! If that was just the start, you must have had an amazing time. Thank you for sharing.

Max the Lobster said...

oh what wonderful memories you brought back for me, Nara and the treasures it houses are truely wonderful. So pleased you had a great trip

iNd!@nA said...

beautiful...

George said...

Magnificent images, Donna. Fabulous gardens!

Anonymous said...

Wow, Japanese gardens, so thoughtfully and precisely beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

ELFI said...

les images sont superbes et ta peinture est en accord intime avec le japon!!

~Babs said...

Wonderful post,,,and most likely my only trip to Japan. The gorgeous photos make it feel like I am right there, on the paths, gazing up at the lanterns.
Thank you, and I'm glad you had a terrific trip!

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Deborah said...

Wonderful photos. I'm glad you had a good trip.

Lynn said...

Just wonderful!