Autumn colors & X-Mas lights

September/December 2009

[27 September] Hike with Naruoka-kun from my lab and his father. It was our plan to climb Nyohō-san close to Nikkō. We took the earliest train and a taxi from Nikkō station to a chair-lift, however, there we already found ourselves in dense fog... We decided to give it a try, and see how the weather would be at the top of the lift by the time we would arrive there.

It was slightly better and we decided to walk.

Nice autumn colors everywhere!

[HDR] Slowly it got better, but in the valleys below us there was still dense fog. Finally we decided to go back the same way, as there was a lot of fog below us, it would get dark early, and the final stretch of our planned route was known to be hard to find even in good weather... Better next time.

[29 November] Every year when the autumn colors get nice, gardens and parks in Tōkyō are lit up, just as when the cherry blossoms are out in spring. This year I went to Rikugi-en, the garden just around the corner from my house.


In the back of the garden (North side) they had a light-up with the theme "river of light" or so. I'm not sure whether it is still beautiful or over the top...


[December 4-8] At the (Hongo) campus of the University of Tokyo, where I work, there are many Ginko trees which change to a beautiful yellow color in the end of Novembver/beginning of December. The only drawback is that these trees carry "ginnan" nuts, which have a cover that gets really smelly when it starts rotting on the ground. Inside the stinky cover is a hard nut, and inside this nut is a bean like thing, which is actually quite tasty with a bit of salt. It is often served as a garnish with some small dishes in izakaya (Japanese eating/drinking bars). In this season you often see elderly people with plastic gloves collecting these smelly things, to get the treasure out at home.

For the Chrismas light-up we went to Ōtemachi/Yurakuchō this year. This is roughtly the business & government district between Tōkyō station and the Imperial Palace.

This was my "nengajō" (New Year's card) this year. 2010 is the year of the tiger in the Chinese calandar. Furthermore you see the cherry blossoms at Hirosaki castle, where I went with my parents in May 2009, and a sunrise with Mt. Fuji which I shot during the hike through the South Alps in September.

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