New friends in Nara, Japan

Hello my deers!  Yes, that is how I meant to spell it!


Doe a dear, a female deer.

Now we have visited “The Land of Heavenly Deer,” or Nara., Japan. IMG_3525 So you were wondering why this place is called the Land of Heavenly Deer?  Legend has it that a mythological god arrived in Nara on a white deer to guard the newly built capital.  Now, you can see tame deer roaming all around Nara. IMG_3518After a beautiful drive from Kobe, we reached a place where I learned how to make a traditional Japanese roof tile from a well-known artist who is very skilled at the art. Kawara tiles help protect houses from damage and they also have other meanings.  I looked on line and my design was similar to the Moon design, and it is said that it will purify and protect your home.IMG_3480


It was really cool when the artist spun the ball of clay into a “top,” so it would be easier to put into the mold.

IMG_3483 The roof tiles are put on many traditional buildings, including Buddhist Temples. IMG_3478 IMG_3491 IMG_3494 IMG_3495 IMG_3498


Guess what I wrote on mine? Yep – Keep calm and travel around the world! This will set and be fired and be sent back to me in American – thanks Akemi!

Then we went to Mariko’s friend Akemi’s house and had a delicious lunch including two hamburger patties, soup and salad and desserts!  Her house is a traditional Japanese house.


Beautiful and Yummy!


We met wonderful people and had fun, as usual.



We enjoyed more singing, and lots of laugher, as usual.

We ate in the tea room with a beautiful alter and decorations.IMG_3505 IMG_3507 I met her great niece, Rinko. She was very fun to play with. IMG_3513 Akemi got us VIP passes to the Todaiji Temple, which is the largest wooden building in the world! See that window in the second floor?


Above our heads, you can see the doors that open twice a year during celebrations

Later on, Akemi took us to a temple containing the world’s largest Buddha in the world. Imagine this. Someone my size is as big as its pinky finger! It was humungous! Two times a year, a window is opened to reveal Buddha’s head. IMG_3541 IMG_2727 IMG_2828 There is a pillar that has a hole in it for an unknown reason.


There was a huge line of children waiting to crawl through the hole. I was going to skip it until a nice girl let me go in front of everyone.

It is believed that the hole is the same size as Buddha’s nostril, and if you can get all the way through it, you will be granted enlightenment in your next life. IMG_3565


I did it!

After we peeled our eyes off Buddha, we went to another part of the temple which has stone sculptures of Japanese guards. You do not want to mess with these guys! IMG_3563 IMG_2857 Back to the deer.  We went to another area within the temple grounds to feed them. They were so tame, even though one was nibbling at my mom’s bottom (it was quite a laugh)!  We had such a fun time in Nara, but it is time to go home to Kobe now! IMG_3527 Look for more posts from your world trek reporter! IMG_3477 Keep calm and travel around the world! IMG_3549 PS. Guess what we had for dinner that night? Sushi! Mariko planned our trip in such an amazing fashion! We had such a wonderful time in Japan. I can’t wait to see her next year in California! Kazu is coming too this time. We have some terrific plans for when you come to see us! IMG_2950

2 thoughts on “New friends in Nara, Japan

  1. Your reporting is awesome, Makenna! It’s really fun to read about the places you visit and all the cool stuff you do….and your home hosts are amazing with the special trips and sites they arrange for you. What a great experience this is! Give my greetings to your moms. Looking forward to your next update!


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