Saturday, April 22, 2006

京都 2005 - 34 Kamogawa

[261105] a walk along e 鴨川 Kamo-gawa river from Kamigamo-jinja to 出町柳 Demachiyanagi, passing under several bridges, watching Kyoto residents spend a late Saturday afternoon by e river, & simply basking in & soaking up as much of e 'feel' of e city as e cat could before its return to Singapore....a walk recommended by KK (10-Q!), although he probably covered another section of this river, & in a different season (winter).

this upper section of e 鴨川 Kamo-gawa is also called 賀茂川 Kamo-gawa - different kanji characters but same romaji spelling:


starting point = little red dot. ~4km & 7 bridges to cross under before reaching Demachiyanagi at e confluence with e 高野川 Takano-gawa:


船形大文字 funagata daimonji on e slope of 西賀茂船山 Nishigamo Funa-yama:


along e Kamo-gawa:


e glorious sky above, painted with swift brushstrokes of clouds:



why this river is called 鴨川:


bottoms up (below left) & pigeons kooning beneath a bridge (below right):

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friend =)) with a 阴阳 'yin-yang' face:


& then e cat looked up & realised that its new acquaintance belonged to one of e homeless men living beneath one of e bridges:

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a pair of washed trackshoes drying in e sun, aluminum drink cans & PET bottles collected & sorted for sale to recycling companies (above left), washed gloves hanging out to dry, dustcart neatly covered with blue tarpaulin, & some sort of clothing hanging in home-made 'suit covers' fashioned from e same type of blue canvas sheet (above right). homeless they may be, he & his friends (there are other homeless men living beneath this & nearby bridges) are still incredibly neat & 'house'-proud.

here he is, neatly dressed & in e very Japanese combination of socks & 'bedroom' slippers, enjoying a book, like any other Japanese uncle spending a Saturday afternoon in e comfort of his living room:


& he was happy to meet this gaikokujin cat, & allowed it to take photos of his humble abode & furry companion.

Kyoto City bus on one of e bridges:


e cat has been taking buses here at least twice a day for e past two weeks during e morning & evening rush hours. & it has yet to see any standing passenger thrown off balance (daily sight on Singapore buses). instead, it has watched a schoolgirl eat cup noodles with chopsticks while standing on board a Kyoto City bus, & elderly passengers with walking aids make their way along e aisle of a moving bus without stumbling.

buses here glide so smoothly to a stop, many a times e cat thought that e driver had stopped for e lights....only to hear him/her announce e name of e stop & e sound of e doors sliding open, & realise that e bus had pulled up at a bus stop.

a real contrast to e SBS32 driver who sped into a bus stop & crashed his vehicle into a stationary bus in front, bruising most passengers (including e cat) & covering them with broken glass. & sending a lady flying straight into e two smashed windscreens, embedding plenty of shards into her that e SGH A&E doctors couldn't remove. & then denying all responsibility for e accident & trying to persuade/threaten e cat to change its version of events in its statement to blame his colleague, e driver of e bus in front. NO #$*!&@^ WAY - not even if he promised e cat a lifetime supply of fish *GRRRRRRRR*

when will SBS/TIBS drivers realise that it is possible to drive without those sudden jerks & stops?

tennis court + open space for soccer & baseball on e opposite bank:


& beautiful trees =)


e setting sun - a reminder that this trip is coming to an end:

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interesting plant:


in someone's garden:


e evil ginkgo that will grow & grow & grow, one day it will be so big fat it will eat up e house behind it, gorging on e humans within, & then *MUNCH* start preying on unsuspecting *MUNCH* Kyoto residents strolling past along *CRUNCH* e Kamo-gawa:




stepping stones - one small step for humans, & a not-so-giant leap for dog-kind:


nice to see people 'getting involved' with e river instead of just keeping to e pavements on either bank & telling kids not to touch e water 'cos you will get wet' (super *DUH* things e cat has heard many times in Singapore) & 'it's dirty'. & nice to see a waterway not barricaded by ugly green railings (which have gaps big enough for kids to fall through anyway - when that is something they are supposed to prevent?).

fellow biologist spotted! checking her line transects:


also an indication that e cat was reaching e confluence at Demachiyanagi, where e Kyodai campus is.

practising some classical piece:


she is really good, & many stopped in their tracks to listen & join her in getting carried away on e beautiful stream of notes that flowed forth from her instrument =)

e confluence:


looking upriver along e Takano-gawa:


there is something beautifully poignant about sunsets:


& e cat's heart sank lower & lower with e glowing sun as e sky breathed its last orange hues of life =| something that always happens when e cat has to return to Singapore.

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