Sunday, February 23, 2020

Another Visit to the Japanese Garden on Sunday

Today, I picked up friend R and we went to the SuihoEn Japanese Garden to attend a Japanese music and dance event.  The garden opened at 10:00 a.m. and we got there around 11:30 a.m., but the parking lot adjoining the garden was full and they had closed the parking lot!  We were directed to additional parking located in a different part of the park.  By the time we parked the car and walked what felt like a very long distance (it probably wasn't), the parking lot had been reopened!  Oh, well, I guess we got our exercise for the day!

Friend R insisted on paying our entrance fee of $3.00 each (Senior discount!).  The music and dancing was held at an outdoor tent set up near the main entrance to the garden:

Traditional Japanese String Instruments Called Koto

The music was followed by three traditional Japanese dances.  The first dance paid tribute to the four seasons, we were told:

The kimono was lovely!

The movements were graceful and deliberate

The dancer was very elegant

The next dance was very popular during the Edo period, we were told:

This dance was a little more energetic

The pace was faster

With much measured stomping of the feet and the pole

The third dance was meant to depict a geisha with an iris flower:

Geisha with an Iris 

Her kimono featured irises, too

It was another very elegant dance.  With a costume change, midway through the dance, when one of the other dancers helped her out of one sleeve of the kimono:

Costume change!

We weren't told what the significance of the costume change was

But, it matched her fan!

I enjoyed watching the dances.  It was all very measured, the movements very deliberate and elegant, but, the dancers were very serious, throughout. 

Afterwards, R and I strolled around the garden and took more pictures.

Spring Flowers

Then, we trekked back to the car and went out to lunch.  We went to the Sri Lankan restaurant, which wasn't too far from the Japanese garden and, afterwards, we stopped at the Sri Lankan store, as well.  I bought more frozen grated coconut, a bottle of kithul (Caryota urens) treacle, and a packet of frozen stringhoppers to try.  I invited R to have a cup of tea, but, she preferred to go home, directly.  I think we were both more than a little tired by then and she has to go to work in the morning.  I dropped her off at her apartment and came home to have a cup of tea.  I've been spending the rest of the evening, relaxing.

Today, I am grateful for:
- A lovely day spent in the company of friend R
- Lots of walking exercise!
- Being able to take in some traditional Japanese music and dance
- A nice lunch out
- A safe drive, both going and returning

Today's joyful activity was visiting the Japanese garden, again.


  1. The dancing must have been so wonderful to watch and the costumes are beautiful.
    The spring flowers are a joy to see. I think it will be a while until we see some here as, following on from the strong winds and heavy rain, we've woken up to snow this morning! X

    1. It was quite lovely, Jules, and a very enjoyable way to spend a spring day. Oh, no! Not more snow! Well, I guess it makes a change from the rain! Stay warm and cozy!

  2. Japanese culture is fascinating! Beautiful event ☺

    1. It is quite fascinating, Natalia, and I enjoyed the music and the dancing. :)

  3. I've only seen Japanese dancing once before but enjoyed it. It was very graceful and expressive ... much different to our Western traditions. I glad you enjoyed your day out with your friend, despite the long walk to and from the car park. It's one way of fitting in some exercise I suppose 😁😁

    1. We definitely got our exercise, yesterday! LOL. But, it was good. I also took one or two pictures for the photo scavenger hunt, as well, and I'll post those, later. :)

  4. What a fun day and not very expensive.

    BTW, what are string hoppers?

    1. It was a fun day and the admission to the garden is quite affordable ($5 for regular entry, if one doesn't qualify for a discount).

      String hoppers or idiyappan is best described as a type of noodles, I suppose. It is usually made of rice flour, made into a dough and pressed through the holes of the specially made mold onto woven rattan round trays and then, steamed. The mold is moved in a circular motion so that the rather fine threads or "strings" of dough form a circular mound of lacy strings of dough, which, when steamed form the string hopper.

  5. Such lovely photos. Thank you for sharing your afternoon with us. It must have been a wonderful day spent with your friend strolling through the gardens full of cherry blossoms(?), lunch at the Sri Lankan restaurant and a little shopping in anticipation of your daughter's visit. What a lovely time to end out the week. I am just wondering.....were you able to sit out of the sun?

    1. It was a very nice afternoon, Susan, and I enjoyed it. Yes, cherry blossoms, as well as other spring flowers. Unfortunately, there weren't a lot of shady places in which to sit in this particular garden, especially not with the sun directly overhead! The weather was nice, though, in the mid-60s (Fahrenheit), so, not too hot and there was a cool breeze. :)

  6. What a lovely way to spend a day with a friend. The photos are great, thanks for sharing them.
    I didn't take my laptop away with me at the weekend and I have been catching up since, but we did go out this morning for groceries and to take a car to have an oil change, coming home in our truck.

    1. We both enjoyed it, Bushlady, other than for the extra long walk to the car park and back! LOL!

      You wouldn't have wanted to be reading blogs, etc., when you were spending time with your DGD, anyway. Time enough to do that once you are home. You've had a busy day with grocery shopping and car service. Hope you have a lovely evening.

  7. The day looks lovely. Your photos were able to give us a sense of the dances - thanks for posting them.

    I didn't know what stringhoppers were either. Glad someone asked.

    1. It was a good day and a nice outing, Debra. I'm glad you enjoyed seeing the photos.

      Well, now you know what stringhoppers are! :D They are not to be confused with grasshoppers! :D


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