Meeting Maikos

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16 days in japan series

On our first full day in Kyoto we had not one but two breakfasts. One western, one Japanese-style, split 50-50 between the two of us. Since you might be familiar with the first, I’ll briefly describe the latter. Grilled salmon, sardines and eggplant, soft tofu, white rice with nori, toasted sesame seeds and jako fish, miso soup, steamed greens, pickles, and the list goes on. A breakfast fit for a pair of champions that had bikes reserved for the day.

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Just a block away, our first stop was Sanjusangen-do, a temple that houses 1001 statues of the buddhist goddess of mercy Kannon, and hosted archery events back in the day. There are still some arrows and a bunch of their holes around. Unfortunately, we weren’t allowed to take photos inside, but the statue collection was impressive.

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We then pedalled our way to Gion, Kyoto’s old district that is known for it’s Geikos and Maikos (think Geishas).

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Right in the middle of Gion, standing on a bridge above Shirakawa river, we stumbled upon a couple of Maikos (meaning Geiko/Geisha apprentices), but that had all the tell-tale signs that they were not legit and these outfits were rented rather. Nevertheless, and despite the crowd making them uncomfortable, it was a really nice and colorful surprise.

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For lunch we stopped at GO!GO!CURRY, which is a Japanese franchise, but don’t let that fool you. It’s cheap, full of delicious goodness and very convenient. My plate was only 9000 Yen and I had chicken filet, pork belly, potato cake and fried egg on a bed of rice with a handful of cabbage, topped with yummy spicy curry sauce. Fork for scale. I still try to recreate this dish at home every so often.

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Moi

The final shot

Hi there, welcome to my blog! I'm Filipe Varela, a designer at Automattic, and am passionate about photography and video. In this site I post photos from my journeys and daily ramblings — in sum, a slice of life. Browse through the archive or check the homepage for the latest posts.

  • Another great one. Please keep them coming, I’m using them as inspiration for our Thailand log…

    • I will. That’s the plan at least: one post per day until I’m done. I’m splitting each day into several posts so it will take longer than the trip itself, but it will be good to have a bigger archive of photos. Thank you so much, can’t wait for yours.

      • I’m doing it the other way around, a whole month in a post. Almost regretting that choice, it’ll be HUGE… Maybe it’s time to change my plan.

        • Maybe that’s the way to go, but I didn’t want to deal with picking shots more than I already do. Granted, I end up with crappy ones mixed with good ones, but I like having more than less to look at in a couple of years.

          • I can tell you, almost for sure, it’s definitely not the way to go. Writing the thing is turning into a nightmare, and I haven’t even started dealing with the photos. That’ll be another issue…

            I’m also enjoying the hell out of your photos, what are you talking about ? They’re great, as usual! Your theme is brilliant for that, I’m having some difficulty setting mine up the way I want in Medium.
            Wouldn’t like to change again, maybe I’ll give my squarespace blog a run for it’s money, it’s just sitting there, in shame…

          • I gotta say, I’m loving this theme as well. And it has inspired me to post a lot more, so it’s been working. I love looking at your handy work in Medium, think it works brilliantly.

            And thank you again, I’m not sure you know what that means to me. :)

          • (blush)

            Maybe it’s time to give WordPress another try ? ;-)

  • Frederiko

    damn proud…I’m almost proud of this for myself, just for knowing you! hahha great stuff

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