I had an amazing two weeks of travel in Japan. There are so many personal stories and highlights from this travel. From having a language barrier to the strangers helping me out when I was lost, Japan lived up to its name as being one of the best and friendliest countries in the World. I am truly blessed to have had this amazing experience during the Sakura festival. The whole of Japan was either pink or white. It was mesmerising and very pretty to travel around.
However, I would like to talk about two of my personal favourite stories from Japan. Stories that I would love to share with you all. The first one is extremely close to me as it is about a loyal dog’s tale and how the dog waited for its master to return. Japanese have paid their respect and love to this dog by constructing a statue just outside of the Tokyo train station. The other one is mostly about all the interesting facts and things that I learned about Japan.
My personal stories from Japan
Hachikō – a loyal dog
I had cried very emotionally when I had watched the movie ‘Hachi: A Dog’s tale‘. If I remember correctly, it was my mother, my cousin Veena and I who had watched this movie together, we had all cried in fact. I still feel and have the same emotional feeling even when I think about this beautiful dog now.
‘Hachikō‘ was an Akita dog and he is remembered for the loyalty he had for his owner, even after 9 years of his owner’s death. Story goes that one day the owner went to work at Shibuya station in Tokyo and never returned, as he died on the way back home. The dog would come every single day for the next 9 years, in the evening waiting for his owner to return till it died.
The movie ‘Hachi: a Dog’s tale’ was released in the year 2009 and the role of the owner was played by Richard Gere. It was a true story of the love between a human and his dog. The dog that was known for its loyalty.
In remembrance of this loyal dog, there is a sculpture of Hachikō, just outside the Shibuya station and the exit is also known as Hachikō exit (exit #8).
When I planned to visit Tokyo, I had to go see the sculpture of ‘Hachikō’. Visiting and looking at the sculpture of ‘Hachikō’ was very close to my heart. Call me emotional, but I was dumbstruck and overwhelmed. I do not have the words to describe what I felt looking at the sculpture of this amazing creature, which I always wanted to see from the time I had watched this movie. To make it even more adoring, there was a cute cuddly cat sitting at the paws of ‘Hachikō’.
I am very glad to have seen ‘Hachikō’ and ticked off my bucket list item. I would definitely recommend each and every dog lover to
- Watch the movie and
- Visit this sculpture as part of their travels to Tokyo.
Interesting things I learned in Japan
Japan sure has some interesting and intriguing things. Below are some of the interesting things that I came across traveling through Japan.
- Trams, here are known as Streetcars.
- Mt Fuji is a girl 😊, the reason my tour guide gave me is that she always hides behind the clouds. That’s the cutest story that I want to believe.
- Every shrine has two sculptures of lion-dogs called Komainu on either side of the shrine gates. One with an open mouth saying ‘a’ and the other one with a closed mouth saying ‘um’. The lion-dog with an ‘A’ represents the birth or beginning of life and the lion-dog with an ‘um’ represents the death or end of life.
- There is a set procedure that is followed while praying in a shrine. In the beginning, since I was not aware, I struggled, and then I learned the right way. The tradition of praying in a shrine:
- Ring the bell
- Throw a coin in the donation box
- Bow down once
- Bow down again
- Clap once
- Clap again
- Make a wish
- Bow down for the final time
- Japan has a service for everything, you can ever imagine. From having a service to cuddle to service to hire a boyfriend or a girlfriend, you can hear all possible things in Japan.
- There are no monkeys on Mt Fuji, they are around the mountain but not on the mountain itself. There are deers and lots of birds though.
- Mt Fuji is 3776 meters high. Just to provide a comparison of how high Mt Fuji is, Mt Kosciusko, Australia’s highest mountain is 2228 meters high. There are travel agencies that take you on a hike to Mt Fuji.
- There are about 300 species of cherry blossom trees in Japan.
- Cherry blossom is the turning point in Japan, reminds of the important memories. Japanese have a custom of cherry blossom viewing. Read ‘10 Insta pictures from Japan‘ to view the cherry blossom pictures from my visit to Japan.
- Before entering any shrine, the person must purify themselves. In the Hindu tradition, the Hindus entering the temples have to wash their hands, legs and sprinkle water on their heads. Similarly, the Japanese also wash their hands and rinse their mouth before entering the shrine.
Even though I have many more stories to talk about, I specifically wanted to share these two amazing stories. I would love to go back to this country again to have more memorable moments. I will truly cherish all these memories that I experienced while traveling in Japan. Lastly, I also wanted to thank the Japanese people for making my stay and travel in Japan truly memorable and pleasant.
If you have any personal interesting story that you would like to share with me, please drop a comment or write to me on Solopassport@gmail.com.