Hase, Enoshima and Why Things Look Up When You Look Up
After the week of training that I have had this post will feel a little like regaling you with tales of the past. It was only last weekend that we decided to make the trip to Hase and Enoshima, but it feels like a decade ago.
To get to Hase, we first had to make our way to Kamakaura. As you probably know, Kamakura is one of my favourite places in Japan as a whole. The temples are great and the atmosphere has a special solitude to it on a weekday. Despite its merits, however, the first thing anyone asks you if you tell them you have been to Kamakura is ‘have you seen the Buddha in Hase’. It was repeated with such frequency that I decided I’d just go and see the bloody thing. As it happens, it was actually Enoshima that turned out to be the treat of the day.
From Kamakura, we boarded a rather dilapidated looking, if charming train to Hase. Walking towards the Daibutsu, we also stumbled across a pretty impressive temple, with an equally impressive view. The cost of the view was a huge amount of steps, but I’m still young(ish). We had lunch at a small cafe near the top, and were seated next to the window overlooking Kamakura. A good view can make even the foulest of food palatable. Luckily this food was pretty good anyway.
The Daibutsu itself is fairly impressive. I wasn’t bowled over by it or anything, but its size is something to marvel at. The place was a little crowded, so we moved on fairly quickly. From here we boarded the same train but stayed on it until we reached the station for Enoshima.
Enoshima is an island very close to the coast, much in the vein of Miyajima, although probably a little smaller. This too required a lot of step climbing, but the things to see made it more than worth it. Once we had passed the temples and shrines and made our way to the back of the island, we were presented with a beautiful view of the sky and its reflection on the sea. The way home was very novel as we caught a suspended monorail. This basically means that the train hangs from the rail, with nothing but open air underneath. It sounds very futuristic, but the station looked a little like an air raid shelter. All in all, I would go back to Enoshima in a heartbeat.
So now I have finished my training and officially work for Gaba. I’ve opened up a few slots this week, although I imagine it will take time to build up a steady clientèle. I’m the patient sort. I enjoyed the training, but the knowledge that over the three days, even when I was not teaching, I was being monitored and assessed, put my nerves on edge. I was glad when Saturday came and I could relax and act natural. I am looking forward to getting my teeth into the real teaching, although I imagine the first lesson will be a hurdle. You never know.
Have a better one.