toshogu, nikko

Jenn wanted to check out Nikko, so we hopped the train up to Tochigi and checked things out. The main attraction Toshogu is a series of shrines and cool buildings housing the spirits of The Tokugawa family; the first shogun of Japan Ieyasu, his grandson, etc. It's a giant world heritage site, and despite the lovely random vending machines are power lines (only in Japan?), it's damn impressive. 15,000 artisans labored for 2 years to build an incredible assortment of carved, painted, gold-gilded wooden buildings. Weather managed to stay not rainy, but was lovely muggy and we was dead tired on the train home.

jenn & p @ shinbash!

jenn & p @ shinbash!, originally uploaded by renfield.

On the train coming home from Nikko.

alien tonchan

alien tonchan, originally uploaded by renfield.

15th week checkup and we have: a spinal column in a bag of juice. There were some skeletal arms and legs in there, too, but Tonchan looks way too much like an alien. Not sure if boy or girl yet, either. Maybe next time.


Various updates: been working a fair amount, and studying. Gearing up to take the Internal Control/Sales Manager Exam, so haven't been practicing much.
I have been getting up early every day for the past several weeks and sitting for 15-20 minutes. It is very boring.
Hiroko is working on a nice gut, btw. I know I'm not supposed to call it a gut; she makes the distinction that my gut is fat and therefore isn't going anywhere, whereas hers is a 'bump', and once the little alien comes out, she'll be back into fighting style.
Tsuyu, aka typhoon season, has begun. It is rainy and muggy and hot and generally nasty.
When the rain clears up, I need to fire up the BBQ again. I use domestic charcoal, but I'm thinking I need to mix in some wood chips and get the cool smokiness. Also, I want to try BBQing some ostrich meat. Just because someone at work described it as "More porky than chicken, more chickeny than pork."

hiroko & dad

hiroko & dad, originally uploaded by renfield.

After hanging out with grandma in the hospital, we went to get some sushi with the parentals Kuroda.

club sandwhich @ royal host

club sandwhich @ royal host, originally uploaded by renfield.

Took the train up from Ueno to Tsuchiura to see grandma in the hospital. Not doing much better -- still can't move her left side, though she is eating and talking. After grandma had lunch Hiroko and I walked down to RoyHo for some lunch.