In November Laurent spent a few weeks on vacation in Japan - yes we do occasionally take separate vacations. He had been there about three years ago to visit our friend Colette but had restricted his activities to Tokyo. This time he did some serious touring around on their great train system - Kyoto,Nara,Osaka and Himeji. He can't stop talking about how efficient and user-friendly their service was, but keep in mind most of his recent experiences has been on TrenItalia.
One of our guests on Christmas Day was another Colette, a friend from Canada who teaches English in Japan. As well as some gelatin sweets adorned with good luck symbols she presented us with a length of obi silk. Well over 14 feet long, its lacquered silk which gives the pattern extra depth and makes it easier to tie the obi. The band of solid orange silk towards one end would be the part of the obi closest the body. It doesn't show and given the cost of patterned silk it is more economical to use the plain silk.
It is a lovely piece of material and Colette suggested cutting it up to make place mats, though I think I would find it difficult to cut into such a beautiful piece of material. We'll have to think of some way to use it.
And a click on the Chrysanthemum will lead you to the first of Laurent's Flickr photo sets of his trip. "Nara is a small town a former Capital of Japan prior to Kyoto. Lovely temples and sacred deers roaming around the parks of the city."
09 gennaio - San Marcellino