I am lucky to have many New Zealand family members who seem to love Japan as much as I do (or perhaps it is just the great company.....). Most of my family have been here at least once and there are a few who make the pilgrimage annually. However our current visitors (my sister, brother-in-law and 2 year old niece) are making their first trip here so it is interesting to see their reaction, rather than the reactions of the regular visitors.
I always forget where I have taken different people so as a record for me for when they come next time (because we all know once you have been here once you just can't resist coming again...) I'll briefly record each day here.....
Day 1 - arrived at Fukuoka at about 4pm so a quick ride home on the highway in time for some tea, quick conversation and some sleep!
Day 2 - a slow day while recovering from sinus problems and general tiredness. A visit to Usa Shrine... and that was about it.
Day 3 - A far more active day with a visit up the mountain on a ski lift to visit Rakanji. Shopping at the mall on the way home.
Day 4 - A day at the big park with Emily. Lots of slides, running and a huge walk around the lake. Home for icecream and leg resting!
Day 5 - Today - A HUGE day... Started out by going to watch some of a kindergarten sports day. Abigail even got to run and get a balloon attached to some snacks. Next a trip into the mountains to visit my favorite temple, Futagoji. Peaceful as ever and kind Japanese people as ever, with random Japanese people giving Abigail icecream. She is slowly learning that a smiling face is more effective than a grumpy one if you want to get treats from total strangers! A short stop at the park on the way home then a quiet evening for Abigail and I, but a much louder evening for Fiona, Jeremy and Tom at a drumming concert in Nakatsu. Haven't heard how they enjoyed it yet, but I'm sure it will have been a highlight of their trip.
And that is an update for now - I'm sure there were a few other bits in there, but I'm glad I wrote it as I'd already almost forgotten what we had done! Here are a few photos in random order...