**Sakura(Cherry blossoms) are in full bloom normally from late March through early April in Tokyo.
Sakura starts to bloom almost five days before of full-bloom. Then full blooming continue almost
5 days. And they start to fall little by little. This beautiful "falling Sakura's petals" we call "Sakura Fubuki".
The scene of falling petals of Sakura is quite beautiful and emotional for Japanese.
It means that you can see Sakura's life(Cherry blossoms) is very short. This may be one of the reason
why Japanese likes Sakura very much because of good grace. ^0^ Another reason is when Sakura are
coming out, we feel that spring is coming together with Sakura.
Close friends of Canada visit us in Japan, March 2017
Our close Canadian friends visited us from late March through early April in 2017. We really appreciate their friendship and were very glad to see them. They actually did very good to us during our stay in the States and they appear in two topics down of "Dear friend from Japan, Jul. 2013". ^0^ Because when we and our friend visited Seattle in the summer of 2013, they passed across of the border and came down from near Vancouver, Canada.
And we visited several places of Seattle and took nice lunch and dinner together. These good memories are treasure of our life. Thank them.
This time they wanted to see Sakura which is cherry blossoms in Japan, and made all of schedules(time and the places) carefully since almost half years ago. But unfortunately Sakura came out almost one week later. So they could see Sakura just last two days at park of Ueno in Tokyo. But instead we visited Yokohama, Kamakura(almost 800 old city neaar from Tokyo), Kyoto and Osaka together. So we do hope that they were satisfied about this trip. ^0^
**Second day of this trip, we visited Japanese Emperor's palace in the middle of Tokyo. Weather was not so nice but not-rain. At the end of one day, we went very traditional style japanese restaurant, Gon-pach, which is very famous for the movie "Kill Bill".(We have another close friend who is Bill in the States. So sorrry Bill. ^0^) Our friend likes this movie, so he was excited of this place.
**Kyoto. Unforttunately Kiyomizu-dera("Tera" and "dera" means "temple" in Japanese) was under
construction for repairing. So we visited Kinkaku-ji("ji" means "temple", too), Ryoan-ji, Fushimi-inari
(--Red gates photo ; here is very famous Shintto shrine), Kenni-ji and others instead.
**We can see interesting old calligraphies and paintings including Fusuma-e and Byoubu(folding screen)-e
in old cities of Japan like Kyoto, nara and more. Few ones are here.("-e" means painting in Japanese.)
**In the season of Sakura(cherry blossoms), hotels of Kyoto are completely packed from almost one year
in advance, and became very expensive. But fortunately we could get very nice hotel which is Nikko-hotel
-Osaka located at Mido-suji in the middle of Osaka by helping of our friend. So we visited Shinsai-bashi
and Doton-bori, then ate Kamo-shabu which is shabu-shabu of duck. So we were easy mark visitors of
Osaka during our stay.(^0^ Joking. ^0^) But nice taste. ^0^
And then some, we could visit Osaka-jo(castle). These photos are from there. Nice beautiful castle, right? ^0^
**After Kyoto and Osaka, we came back to Yokohama. Then visited 800 old city Kamakura together. We saw old temples and big-Buddha there. ^0^
Our farewell party
Before we left the States in November 2015, we had great great our farewell party at the gallery in mid.
of downtown Dallas. This beautiful gallery is belong to TVAA which is Texas Visual Arts Association.
Fortunately we had(still "have" ^0^) great friends who were director, assistant and best supporter of
this gallery. Jan, Jenny and Shari. They supported us very much for this farewell party. Thank them.
Also we had great support from our best friends, Rosanne, Bill, Lona, Steve, Andrew and more of course.
**Left; In the middle of preparation. ^0^
**Center; Our close friend Andrew lead jazz combo for us. Thank you Andrew. ^0^
**Right; Gradually many of musicians came and played for us. It was wonderful concert.(Oh no. It was
our farewell party. ^0^ ^0^)
**Left; Center is Jim who was a professor of famous university for jazz music for long time. We call him
"Father" because so many of students adored him like their father.
**Center; Transient free time for musicians in the middle of party time. Musicians were chatting about
music? About us?? We don't know it. ^0^ ^0^
**Right; Many of friends helped us for this party. ^0^
**Left; Musicians played special music for us. We felt sad and loneliness little bit. But nice music,
nice friends. We won't forget them forever. Thank you all. ^0^
**Center; Saxophone maddness. Our favorite style. ^0^ ^0^
**Right; From out side of gallery. You can see many of visitors. Thank you for all.
We had uncountable supports from jazz musicians in DFW(Dallas-Fort Worth and Denton area). Almost 30-35 jazz musicians and they played jazz for free for more than two hours. Our best friend Andrew led all music. Special thank you, Andrew. And thank you all the players Buddy, Chris, Quamon, two of Brad(^0^), Dave, Brian, Jeff, Pete, Melani, Ben, more and more. Also two of great classical music players from Dallas Symphony. We won't forget your help.
And much more. ^0^ ^0^ Many of art friends and some professors of mine from Northlake College. Even we need to leave Dallas, all are still great great friends and all are still great great memories. Thank you.
Dear friend from Japan, Jul. 2013
Our dear friend Toru came to visit us again. This was second time for him to visit us during almost 17 years. We enjoyed not only DFW, but also Mt.Rainier in Washington State together this time. Unfortunately we could not get nice weather in Washington State this time(We were stoped at lodge of Mt.Rainier for one our and half because of thunder storm ^0^), but we had good memories in Seattle for Chifuly gallery and more. Nice time. ^0^
On the other hand, we had very nice weather in DFW(Dallas-Fort Worth area). We enjoyed jazz, wine, friends, shopping and swimming under the clear sky together. We do hope that he cloud enjoy real American life with us. Great visit of him. ^0^
**From famous Chifuly gallery.
**Left; In front of famous Pike market place in Seattle. Smoked salmon here is the best we think. Really good. ^0^
**Center; First Starbucks coffee shop. Started Starbucks from here.
**Right; At the seafood restaurant near from Pike market place. We enjoyed all of foods and wine also. Nice place to visit. ^0^
**Regrettably rainy Mt.Rainier. But fortunately we could get nice small hotel without any reservation. It was just lucky.
**Left; Infamous the assassination place of president Kennedy in Dallas. One of the worst history of the United States.
**Center; We had very nice weather in Dallas. So we enjoyed swiming pool of our house during day time for two days. ^0^ ^0^
**Right; City of Denton has UNT(University North Texas) which is very famous for jazz study.(Of course not only jazz,
but also they have very nice educations for classical music, science and more.)
And during hiss visit, one of the restaurant has big band jazz led by Jim Rigs who was a greaat professor of UNT
for long time. And more. In this band players were all great like Jim of course, Chris, Peet, Cray on saxophone
Tony and Greg on trombone, Ron and Jack on trumpet, and Stefan(p), Lynn(b), Ed(d) on rhythm section.
Great great big band jazz from them. ^0^ ^0^ ^0^
**Left ; Dallas Cowboys Training Facility-1-May 2nd '09
**Center ; Dallas Cowboys Training Facility-2-May 2nd '09
**Right ; Neighborhood-Tree fell over-May 2nd '09
Grand Circle, August 2006
This is second time we visited Grand Circle. First time, we drove from El Paso. Second time was from Dallas.
Second time, we drove almost 3000miles this time. Dallas - Amarillo - Santa Fe(we chose this way) -
Flugstaff - Grand Canyon - Lake Powell - Bryce Canyon - Arches - Monument Valley - Mesa Verde.
Please do not say how we were greedy. ^0^ But yes, we were greedy. We are realised it after this trip. ^0^
But surely you can see how marvelas our earth is here. Everything were terrific and everything astounded us.
NPs in the States teach us how marvelas the working of nature is.
**No words. This is the "Grand Canyon NP".
**We passed just beside of lake Powell and visited "Bryce Canyon NP".
We didn't go down to the bottom of this canyon. But so many of huge rocks are standing like soldiers.^0^
**After almost two hours works from bottom of this places, this is "Arches NP".
As the name implies, many of rock-bridges there. You can see how huge they are. First photo, I was
standing almost 50m far from "Delicate Arche". Then second one, you can see my husband. He was
just bottom of this arch. Now you know how huge these arches(rock-bridges) are. ^0^ ^0^
Mt.Rainier and Seattle, End of July in 2005
Mt.Rainier. We have three of our the most favorite places to visit. Yellowstone/Grand Teton, Grand Circle
and this Mt.Rainier. Why Mt.rainier is because so many difference from the middle of mountain to top of it.
"Paradise" is famous for so many of wildflower meadow and hikes among these beautiful flowers.(See photos)
And top of mountain, they have great glacier. Huge contrast of flowers and ice(glacier). No other place
like this I believe. I heard this glacier is the second largesst one in North America.
According to people who lives there told us that the best timing of wildflowers is just one week of the year.
So you can see how we were very lucky because we visited the best timing which is the end of July. ^0^
**Mt.Rainier, hike road and wildflower meadow.
**Left;A man whom I don't know(^0^). **Center & Right;At wonderful small hotel there.
**Left & Center;Second day of Mt.Rainier. **Right;At the central of Seattle.
North CA Trip
We visited Redwood National Park, San Francisco, Napa and Yosemite NP in August 2004.
Our first stay in the States from 1995-1999, we visited many of cities in the U.S.A. NY, Boston and so on.
But after several years, we realized that the most wonderful places in the States belong to in the nature.
So we were trying to visit many of NP(National Park) and nature in the US.
Also we like wine.^0^ So one of the best place to visit for us is North CA, like Napa and Sonoma area.
**Left & Center;Redwood National Park.(Huge redwoods ^0^) **Right;Beautiful San Francisco Bay Area.
**Visited several winery. **Center;Grape field from winery. **Right;My husband was tasting some wine.
**Great Yosemite NP. We visited in August. But one of park-ranger said that late spring must be more
beautifle because they have more water in the rivers and falls.
Grand Teton and Yellow Stone, August 2002
This was second time Yellow Stone and Grand Teton for us. As you know Yellow Stone NP is first
national park in the world. So you know how wonderful this place is.
We think that Yellow Stone has four faces. If I remember correctly(^0^) south-east side has
beautiful lakes and peaceful nature. South-west has wonderful and calm streams(small rivers)
and big-nature "geysers". There are many of terraces at north-west side. And many of animals
in north east.
Also Grand Teton. If I remember correctly(again?? ^0^) these mountains came down from
Canadian Rocky mountains. Beautiful mountains, lakes, flowers and many of hiking trails weaves
perfect nature world.
Then if combines Yellow Stone and Grand Teton, you can imagine how wonderful world here is.
**Great geysers. If I remember correctly almost 70% of geysers of the world are located in Yellow Stone.
**They said these kind of hot springs as "pool". Very clean hot water but different colors because of different
kind of bacterias.
**Diffrent faces of Yellowstone. Terraces, water falls and so on. So many of interesting things in Yellowstone.
**Many wild animals. Bisons of course, black bears, mooses, wolves, coyotes, elks and more and more.
Especially bisons walks on the road without any fears. If we meet them on the road, scary. ^0^
**Left; One of photo from few our two shot. ^0^ ^0^
**Center; Famouse cabin foe the movie ""Shane".
**Right; Hike road.(We didn't meet anybody during hiking. Beautiful but scary hiking because of
many wild animals. ^0^)
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