Friday, May 10, 2013

Tokyo, Japan - Meiji Shrine and Temple (Part 1)

Our first stop of the day was at the Meiji Shrine.  Our tour guide’s name was Hetsue, and she went by Sue to make things easy for us. The driver’s name was Mr. Kowabutta (I am spelling phonetically!).

 The signs were in Japanese with English subtitles.  I also think that some of them had Chinese translations as the characters seemed just a bit different in different sections.  More on that when I can find a good example.

The first eye delight was the display for the barrels of sake wrapped in straw. I had seen the barrels in my pre-trip research but was not prepared for the excitement when I saw them “in person”.  These are very colorful with a lot of graphics and text.

The next display held wine barrels.  I could build this at my house!  The wine was from all around the world.

This is a public place so people are free to visit and walk around.  The pathway to the Shrine is through a forest on a path lit by nice lanterns.  The main entrance is through a HUGE torii (gate). The sides are made from a single piece of wood. We were very lucky to be able to view this without other tourists in front of us. The magical moment opportunity didn’t last very long but we took advantage of the photo op while we could.  You can get a better idea of the scale in the photo with all of the tourists.  This is the largest wooden “torii” of the Myojin style in Japan.  (Note: I have other torii photos and will need to do more research.)  As we pass through this gate, we experience “Cleansing – Phase I”. 

From a sign: Otorii (the Grand Shrine-Gate) This gate was rebuilt and dedicated by a pious benefactor on December 23, 1975, and modeled both in form and style exactly after the original built in 1920.  The material wood is “Hinoki” (Japanese Cypress) 1,500 years old from Mt. Tandai-san Taiwan. Height: 12m Length of crosspiece: 17m Diameter of each pillar 1.2m Length of under crosspiece: 15.5 m Distance between the two pillars: 9.1 m.

1 comment:

Ginan said...

So the sake and wine are a display? I didn't get their meaning - an offering?