This day seemed daunting at first because I had to navigate the train system myself, but it turned out to be very fun and adventurous! Being thrown into situations in a foreign country always makes one learn! :)
I took a train to Umeda to meet up with the daughter of one of Mari's friends. Her name is Yu and she is so pretty! I was a little nervous at first, but as the day went on we became friends~ :)
We went on another train to begin our journey to Arashiyama, a town in Kyoto that is very old and lovely! We got off at a town called Katsura and I had to use the bathroom. Much to my surprise and dismay, this bathroom was Japanese-style!! Which meant the toilet was just a sink-like hole in the floor....and one has to squat...needless to say I was not happy and didn't like it one bit! >.<
We made it to Arashiyama quickly and as soon as we stepped out of the train it was hot! Arashiyama is so beautiful! One of my favorite places EVER! There is a huge rushing river going through it that is so powerful and people walk and play along the banks of it! We crossed a bridge into the town part and I loooved how old it is! Lots of people and children on school trips were there, but it wasn't as crowded as Shijyo-dori. We went to see Tenryu-ji, a huge temple with a lovely garden! I bought some goodies at a sweets shop, and we walked around a bit before going to lunch. I ordered a soba set at the cutest restaurant! It came with cold soba, tempura, and the most amazing rice ever! The rice was stir-fried with seaweed, green onions, and maybe garlic! YUM!
After lunch, Yu-san wanted to take me to Kinkakuji and meet up with her friend at Kyoto station. Before heading on the bus to Kyoto station, I bought a roll cake sandwich with matcha flavored mousse. It was so tasty and sweet! MMMMMMM....I can't wait to go back to that stand! :) The bus ride was kinda long but easy enough. We met up with her cute friend at the huge Kyoto station and boarded a crowded bus to Kinkakuji.
Kinkakuji is an amazing feat-- It's so large and beautiful! The gardens are amazing and even prettier than the garden at Tenryu-ji! I bought some goodies at the little shops along the way and we talked about how the garden made us think of Totoro! Yay!
After that, we took yet another bus to Kawaramachi, a shopping arcade. We went in some cute shops and bought some fun things! :) Since I had told Yu-san I liked ramen, we went to Ippudo, which is a famous ramen chain!!!! OMG It was so good! I loved what I had! It was the red bowl, and so rich!!! XD I was in ramen heaven! The place itself is interesting because you sit at communal tables. It's not awkward at all though.
After dinner, they wanted to go to a cafe. I was getting pretty wiped out, but we had fun talking at a cool cafe. :) I took the train back to Mino and was so tired from the surprisingly super fun day!! :D Thanks you guys!