Day 17: Japan’s Vegetable Garden (20 March 2019)

Most of Japan’s land is mountainous. The Kochi area is one of the largest flat plain areas. Although urbanized, a significant portion is devoted to vegetable production thus earning Kochi the title of Japan’s vegetable garden.

Indeed, most of the walk was flat. At the beginning, we came upon Kagami’s Tulip Festival which is during March. Not the Keukenhof in the Netherlands, an unexpected field of tulips spread out before us. I thought that this day would be somewhat boring. Kukai had other plans.

Before we reach Temple 28, I had to take four photos of modern Japanese life – no theme but some images of how Japanese and by extension how we live in current times.

The first are the tofu choices. You think that we have choices between brands? I then passed a recycling center. Ever wonder what happens to those cans after you toss them into those blue bins? I could not resist recording my first sighting of a 100 yen shop. Given that the yen to dollar exchange rate is 111 to 1, the 100 yen shop is cheaper than the Dollar Store! How about having a granite effigy of MM in your backyard?

1001 Tofu
Jasper Johns? No, a Ron Yoshida
100 Yen Shop
MM and Friend

Back to Temple 28. When you think that you caught a break in walking flat ground, here comes another steep hill and then more steps to climb to the temple grounds. Here is a henro leaving the temple. He came by car.

Fortunately, the trail from Temples 28 to 30 and finally to the hotel was flat. Here are some images of Japanese Vegetable Garden.

Henro Trail Marker
Cemetery With Food For The Anscesters
A Greenhouse Uncovered
Shrine in the Fields
Preparing Rice Paddy
Beehives By The Road
Kochi Rice Paddies
Unfinished Urban Structure

I seem to emphasize topics and images that unrelated to temples. A henro’s time is less than 1% spent on temple grounds. We are also living daily life confronted with what we encounter “on the road.” These experiences are assimilated along with those moments of facing the hondo with our hands clasped. In my opinion at this moment, is how we generalized that spiritual moments at the temple into our seemingly mundane and routine lives. I leave you with images from temples and a Shinto shrine.

Hondo, Temple 27
Buddhist Temple and Resting Place For Henro
Think Before You Enter
Temple 30 Hondo Towards Sunset

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