Thursday, 19 December 2013


I spoke at an event on Sunday and because of the post-event drinking party they put me up for the night. On Monday I was to transfer at Kyoto to the shinkansen and head home, except I couldn't. Despite the mile long to-do list waiting for me at home, I couldn't just head straight home on Monday morning, it would have been such a waste! So I stashed my bag in a locker and hopped on the JR Nara line.

A few minutes later I was standing beneath the first of many bright orange torii shrine gates.

Thankfully the crowds thinned out the further I got up the mountain and, although the weather was grey and overcast with a bite to the wind, there were only a few intermittent rain drops and my climb kept me warm.

Even without my good camera Fushimi Inari is incredibly photogenic. Much of the route up the mountain is lined with bright orange gates, winding through the forest where a few stubborn maples still held on to their autumnal glory.

There was an older man repainting one of the torii and there were others festooned with wet paint signs and in various degrees of newly painted-ness.

Then there were others that were obviously rotting from within and others that had rotted away leaving empty cement post holes filled with fallen leaves.

The calm and quiet of the surroundings and the walk did me the world of good after days of bonding with my computer in frenzied prep for my talk.

But all too soon it was time for me to head back to Kyoto and, as the rain began to fall, I bought omiyage in one of the station's stores and snagged the last empty seat on my shinkansen back home.


  1. Fushimi! Despite numerous visits, I've never written about it. That's how powerful its effect is on me ...

    1. I'm rather embarrassed it was my first trip. But I can assure you it won't be my last.I loved the calm and colour!

  2. This is definitely on my list of places I must visit, I've been to Kyoto several times and yet never made it there. One day...

    1. I had never made it there myself, despite having been a half-hour by train from Kyoto for an entire year of exchange in uni. I went to Kyoto many times, and passed through Fushimi by train and often thought I should stop and check it out but... But now I have been I will have to go back. As Ru said above, it can have a powerful effect on visitors, and I think I need a few more visits! You should definitely go next chance you get!