The next day, we went to brunch at the Officer’s Club on base. There we met up with one of the general surgeons and her parents. She was actually roommates with SMS’ sister in medical school so she and SMS’ family go way back. It was serendipitous that the parents could meet up again and everyone could catch up.
Unfortunately, this was the morning I figured out that I had no idea where my id card was. After lots of searching in multiple places over the last few days, the best idea I can come up with was that I had it in my pocket at Narita and in the midst of running (literally) like a madwoman (figuratively), the card inched its way out of my pocket. *Sad trombone!*
|Our Machiya! (SMS)|
After brunch, we got a ride to Yokosuka-chuo, went to Shin-Yokohama via Yokohama and headed down to Kyoto on the Shinkansen. It was a smooth ride and the whole trip takes about 3:15 from base all the way to Kyoto main station. We took the bus to the upper Northwest in the Nishijin district where we had booked a Machiya, or traditional Japanese house. It was very cool. Tsutaya-san showed us the house and some of the workings (lights, hot water, etc). The stairs were very steep but we all navigated them like champs. There was a sitting area, enclosed small garden with a porch that led to the bathroom, a kitchen, dining room table and two upstairs bedrooms. One had some room while the other just barely fit two futons. We loved it and I would highly recommend it unless someone had balance issues. I also would not rent it in Winter because I think it would be terribly cold and potentially uncomfortable.
That night, we went to the Gion district and walked around. We ate at a little restaurant we came across that only served New Zealand lamb dishes. We had a lovely meal in the cute, small dining room and spoke with a customer who taught physiology at UCSB from 1979-1981.
We walked around a few more allies, bought some ice cream and then hopped back on the bus to the Machiya. We all crashed almost as soon as we got there. Another successful, full day!