京都 2005.03.31 () - かつら

This day, かつら. I got coffee in the morning at the cafe, then went to 四条 and 河原町 and took a private (はんきょう?) subway to the かつら area; only 180! The downtown busses are 220, and かつら is just outside of that zone. The train is also faster than the bus; going to かつら was a pretty good transit experience, all told.

The かつら area is twisty and turny and seems not as clean as downtown, with not much around for tourists. And apparantly, no one has bothered to make a very useful map of the area; every map I saw showed the large streets only. So it took me a little while to find the villa, but once I found it I had some time to spare anyway. I wandered a little, just straight down one street so I wouldn't lose myself again, and I found a main intersection I'd passed when looking for the villa. Huh! I went to a ラーメン shop there for lunch, which was very good. Then I headed back... and got lost! Not sure what I did wrong...

Time was short, so I asked a couple people for directions and jogged a bit, and made it on time ok. The villa tour makes a big deal about the buildings (no fires here, so they are pretty old), but I liked the garden and bridges a lot more. They didn't ask for my passport here either, but they did have limitations on what you could take photos of (the other imperial residences don't have this restriction).

I took a bus back, because I wanted to go to some bookstores near 京都駅; the busses go there, but not the private subway line. Slower, less nice, and spendier than the subway. There are a few large bookstores around the station, but I still didn't have any luck finding what I was looking for. On my way north, I left a note at the Tour Club for Matt and Lara regarding dinner the next day. Then I went back by the きれじや and discovered that the only patterns that were both pretty and affordable were invariably 中国 made, and I wasn't comfortable with that, so I decided to pass.

At the guesthouse, I asked みちる and later えいじ to help make the reservation, but it ends up the restaurant is closed on Thursdays, so the reservation would have to wait until Friday morning.