Shopping in Kyoto

Maja in japanese robeHide went home to Osaka the previous day, so Josefin and I decided to do some serious shopping in Kyoto this Tuesday. We visited numerous stores, mostly selling Japanese souvenirs, and we found some things we liked.

For instance, I bought a Japanese robe for my sister in law and my niece, and some Japanese tea for my brother. The woman who sold the robes had been in Sweden once and she told me that she knew one Swedish expression: “Tack så mycket” (“Thank you very much”).

Magazine stores

I loved to visit magazine- and book stores in Japan, ’cause i knew they always had something that would interest me (something jrock-oriented). I found Yoshiki’s biography (adorable drummer in X-Japan), but since it was completely written in japanese, I found it a bit overkill to buy it. I bought a bunch of jrock- and visual kei magazines instead.

Japanese magazines

I wish I could see Gackt and the Gazette on the magazine covers like these in Sweden…

Magazine store

It amazed me how people just could stand in the store, calmly reading magazines. Browse threw pages is one thing, but this gentlemen seemed to do some serious reading. It would never be accepted in a Swedish store, I believe. At least I feel bad when I find myself reading a magazine that I haven’t payed for.

Daruma dollDaruma Doll

Among other things, I bought a Daruma doll and a fluffy Totoro. A Daruma doll (also known as Dharma doll) is a representation of Bodhidharma, the founder of Zen (a school of Mahayana Buddhism).

You paint the right eye with black ink while making a wish. When the wish finally comes true, you paint the other eye.

Totoro and Tjeburasjka

Totoro seems to be very, very big in Japan. Maybe Totoro and Asta Kaskthat’s not so surprising. Totoro figures were sold everywhere in different shapes and material.

This blue Totoro has followed me home back to Sweden.

What kind of surprised me though, is that the Russian creature “Tjeburasjka” (known as “Drutten” in Sweden) appeared here and there.

Tjeburasjka was a character in a popular children’s TV show in Sweden during the 70s, but I seem to be the only one knowing it among my friends. I used to love it as a child… I wonder what it’s called in Japan?

Split-toe shoesSplit-toe shoes

They have the weirdest shoes in Japan, and since I saw them rather frequently, I guess they are kind of in trendy now?

They are so called “split-toe shoes” and here you can see an example. I just can’t imagine how that kind of shoes can be comfortable?

At the post office

I’ve been told that it’s more expensive to pay excess-baggage fees at the airport than to post it to yourself, so I did. I can’t say it was cheap though, but on the other hand, I guess my parcel was quite heavy since I’ve been shopping so many souvenirs and magazines the other day.

Tip: If you want to save time at the post-office, do some preparations that I apparently didn’t think about. Before they can send your parcel, they need to know exactly what’s in it and what every item cost (and the summary cost). I had a big package with millions of knick knack and didn’t remember their prices at all, so I had to open it at the post-office, dig it through and guess.

Japanese graveyards

We had a graveyard outside our hotel-window in Kyoto (Hotel Alpha Kyoto). Japanese graveyards looks very special and very cramped. When you see them squeezed in between the houses, almost like a piece in Tetris, it looks almost surrealistic.

Japanese graveyard

So many people and so little space. There’s no grass or flowers like at a Swedish cemetery. I thought they were beautiful though.

Drink corners

You will always have access to fresh water in Japan.

There’s drink corners and vending machines absolutely everywhere on the streets. That’s really helpful those hot humid days in June.

Blog posts from this journey:

Shoppingday in Kyoto

30 June 2009

Today have been our shopping-day in Kyoto. I have bought so much stuff so tomorrow morning I must go to the post office and ship some it to Sweden. I mean… it is not everyday I am in Japan, so it is OK to shop like crazy…

They have so much beautiful things. And I found more jrock magazines!!! Among these; “Fool’s mate” that I have been looking for. The Gazette is everywhere in the magazines! Maybe because of their tour? I also see Ken’ichi (“L”) and Gackt everywhere. They are so adorable.

Japanese guys are sooo gorgeous. I just like to sit at the cafe and watch them. ^^ And today we met a japanese woman who had been to Sweden and who could say “Tack sa mycket” (thank you).

Tonight we will prepare our journey to Tokyo! Mata ne!

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Welcome! This is not an actual news site but a personal blog, run by an ordinary person who loves visual kei. This is my space where I ventilate thoughts and values and shares happenings within the scene. My goal is to make information easy to access and to support artists and movements that I admire. Especially smaller bands that need an extra push in the djungle of major bands. English is not my native tounge so please condone my linguistic mistakes.

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