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Weekend in Shirahama, Japan: Day 1
Kickin' Back at Senjojiki, Shirahama Japan (白浜 の 千畳敷) -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/1600 sec, f/4, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Kickin' Back
at Senjojiki, Shirahama Japan (白浜千畳敷)

この間、週末旅行でパンダが多い白浜(和歌山県)に行きました。

As I mentioned the other day, we took a short weekend trip to Shirahama (白浜), in Wakayama Prefecture a three-hour drive south from Kyoto. We left on Friday after Anthony got home from school, so arrived late in the evening, giving us all of Saturday and most of Sunday to enjoy the area.

We had a nice hybrid Western/Japanese room at Hotel Laforet....

if it weren't the middle of the night, the view would be of the ocean photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Hotel Laforet -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
iPhone 5s @ 4.12mm f/2.2 at an effective 30mm — 1/30 sec, f/2.2, ISO 125 — map & image datanearby photos
if it weren't the middle of the night, the view would be of the ocean
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
It's All About the Pandas in the lobby at Hotel Laforet photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 58mm — 1/250 sec, f/2.8, ISO 220 — map & image datanearby photos
It's All About the Pandas
in the lobby at Hotel Laforet
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl

The area is known for its small white-sand beach, and for having pandas (in what I assumed was a zoo, but as we'll see in a later post, the pandas are at an amusement/nature park). It was cute to see panda paraphernalia everywhere, starting with the lobby of the hotel on Saturday morning.

What we didn't see were other customers. The hotel was 11 floors, but on Saturday morning the place seemed deserted; we didn't see anyone except a few staff. It was eerie.

(It turns out that it filled up quickly later in the day, after thecheck-in time.)

Our first order of business in the morning was to stroll down to the beach, which is actually named Shirarahama (白良浜, literally white good beach), though the town it's located in is named Shirahama (白浜, literally white beach).

at Shirarahama Beach (白良浜) photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Shirarahama Beach (白良浜) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
iPhone 5s @ 4.12mm f/2.2 at an effective 30mm — 1/4000 sec, f/2.2, ISO 40 — map & image datanearby photos
at Shirarahama Beach (白良浜)
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
Shirarahama Beach (白良浜) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/6400 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Very White, Very Clean very empty, but it's not that way during the summer -- Shirarahama Beach (白良浜) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/500 sec, f/11, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Very White, Very Clean
very empty, but it's not that way during the summer

The last time I was at this beach was 20+ years ago, when I spent a weekend with a metal detector scooping up 500-yen ($5) coins. During the morning it was as empty as seen in these photos, but during the day during the summer it was a solid carpet of people.

For lunch we stopped by a place for sushi that Fumie had seen in a guidebook.

Hand Delivered Egg “ Sushi ” at Sushi Kozushi (幸鮨) -- Sushi Kozushi (幸鮨) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/4, ISO 2200 — map & image datanearby photos
Hand Delivered Egg Sushi
at Sushi Kozushi (幸鮨)

It was lucky that I didn't realize at first that this was a real sushi place, meaning pretty expensive. I'd asked Fumie to order for us all, so I didn't realize at first that no prices were displayed anywhere, but when we got our first sushi the taste told me that this was a really high-quality place, so I steeled myself for the bill.

It turns out to have been about $100 for the three of us, which is certainly pricey for a lunch(!), but I suppose it's much less than something comparable would have been in Kyoto. I think it was my first time at such a high-class sushi place. It was delicious, especially early on when I didn't think about the price. :-)

After lunch we made a short drive to a seaside place called Senjojiki (千畳敷), a name that means something along the lines of spread out over a bazillion room's worth of area. It turns out to have been an amazing area of many different kinds of rock formations all in one much-smaller-than-a-bazillion compact area...

Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/800 sec, f/6.3, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Refreshingly Dangerous -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/1000 sec, f/4, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Refreshingly Dangerous

The modern world, both in Japan and America, seems to have gotten so regulated and controlled so as to remove even the slightest risk of injury or of having fun, lest, I suppose, someone sue. So it was refreshing that at this place there were no guardrails, no ropes, no handrails, no don't have fun signs. You were responsible for yourself, and if you did something stupid you would likely die or maim yourself. I'm a big believer that personal responsibility should be personal, so I really enjoyed the freedom to explore to the limits of my own sense of responsibility. We lived.

Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 32mm — 1/800 sec, f/5, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
iPhone 5s @ 4.12mm f/2.2 at an effective 30mm — 1/1400 sec, f/2.2, ISO 32 — map & image datanearby photos
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
Optical Illusion we're actually way way above the water photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
iPhone 5s @ 4.12mm f/2.2 at an effective 30mm — 1/2900 sec, f/2.2, ISO 40 — map & image datanearby photos
Optical Illusion
we're actually way way above the water
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
The Photo that I was taking in “ Optical Illusion ” above -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 55mm — 1/1250 sec, f/5, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
The Photo
that I was taking in Optical Illusion above

In some areas the rocks were very stratified into highly distinct layers. I seem to have been unable to capture it in a photo well, but you can sort of see a bit in the next photo, where a thin layer of gravel-strewn rock runs near the top of the frame:

Layered -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 29mm cropped — 1/3200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Layered

Some layers were just a few inches thick, some a foot thick, but the passage of time was clear and the abrupt changes in composition brought to mind cataclysmic events (volcanoes, tidal waves, earthquakes, etc.). One thing I never did notice in the 50+ meters of vertical layers were shells, so I guessed that this area had never been below sea level.

desktop background image of scene at Senjojiki, Shirahama Japan (白浜の千畳敷) -- Exploring -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/2000 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Exploring
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Finally Close to Sea Level -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/2500 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Finally Close to Sea Level
Bowl of Salt -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 40mm — 1/1250 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Bowl of Salt

Above the tidal line were bowls encrusted with a thick layer of salt. I'm guessing that sea water is blown in infrequently during storms, then evaporates and leaves the salt behind.

Others Playing -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/3200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Others Playing
More Exploring -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/3200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
More Exploring
Investigating Intertidal Life Forms photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
iPhone 5s @ 4.12mm f/2.2 at an effective 30mm — 1/950 sec, f/2.2, ISO 32 — map & image datanearby photos
Investigating Intertidal Life Forms
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
Some Kind Of Something hard-shelled muscle/clamish thing evocative of a Trilobite -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/320 sec, f/5.6, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Some Kind Of Something
hard-shelled muscle/clamish thing evocative of a Trilobite
Kings of the World photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
iPhone 5s @ 4.12mm f/2.2 at an effective 30mm — 1/4000 sec, f/2.2, ISO 40 — map & image datanearby photos
Kings of the World
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
desktop background image of scene at Senjojiki, Shirahama Japan (白浜の千畳敷) -- Gaps are Meant to be Bridged it was a pretty wide gap, but he made it with 10cm to spare -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/4000 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Gaps are Meant to be Bridged
it was a pretty wide gap, but he made it with 10cm to spare
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Red Straight Rock -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/2000 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Red Straight Rock

Yet just a few seconds away...

Creamy-Smooth Cream-Colored Rock feels otherworldly -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 58mm — 1/4000 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Creamy-Smooth Cream-Colored Rock
feels otherworldly
Wishing He Could Skateboard Here -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/9, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Wishing He Could Skateboard Here
Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 62mm — 1/3200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Rock That Looks Like Wood -- Senjojiki (千畳敷) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/3200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Rock That Looks Like Wood

We really enjoyed the area, and it was the highlight of the day.

We then took a leisurely drive along the coast without much of a destination, but at some point I noticed on the car navigation system that a kilometer or so inland was a Kinkakuji Temple (金閣寺). The famous Golden Pavilion temple in Kyoto has that name, so I thought it'd be interesting to see what this temple with the same name looked like.

Outside the Gate the Kinkakuji Temple (金閣寺) in Shirahama Japan, not the one in Kyoto -- Kinkakuji Temple (金閣寺) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/160 sec, f/9, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Outside the Gate
the Kinkakuji Temple (金閣寺)
in Shirahama Japan, not the one in Kyoto

Unfortunately, it was closed for some kind of construction. It seemed deserted.

Looks Promising -- Kinkakuji Temple (金閣寺) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/9, ISO 220 — map & image datanearby photos
Looks Promising

The Kongorikishi guardians flanking the entrance (described here) were wood-relief carvings instead of statutes carved from wood. I'd never seen that before. Too bad it was closed... the map showed lakes and such inside.

We continued our drive and ended up at a big orange something sticking out of the mountain, something we'd seen and wondered about from the hotel...

Big Orange Thing 2000' Long -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 40mm — 1/160 sec, f/10, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos
Big Orange Thing 2000' Long

It turns out that it's to support landing lights for the local airport, which seems to have been carved out of the mountains:

Mountain Airport Nanki-Shirahama Airport  ·  南紀白浜空港 -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 32mm — 1/125 sec, f/10, ISO 400 — map & image datanearby photos
Mountain Airport
Nanki-Shirahama Airport  ·  南紀白浜空港

The hotel had a ping-pong table we could rent, which Anthony was excited to try...

Ping-Pong for the First Time photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Hotel Laforet -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 36mm — 1/160 sec, f/5, ISO 2000 — map & image datanearby photos
Ping-Pong for the First Time
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl
Surprisingly Good! for his first time photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl -- Hotel Laforet -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Fumie Matsunaka Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 36mm — 1/160 sec, f/5, ISO 2800 — map & image datanearby photos
Surprisingly Good!
for his first time
photo by Fumie Matsunaka Friedl

I couldn't let him get too full of himself, so of course I had to crush him with a powerful slam from time to time. Proper parenting, you know. ;-)

The hotel has huge onsen baths on the 11th floor, separated by gender, but you could rent a private family bath for 50 minutes, which we did...

Private Bath 家族のお風呂。50分は2千円位。よかった。 -- Hotel Laforet -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/5, ISO 4000 — map & image datanearby photos
Private Bath
家族のお風呂。50分は2千円位。よかった。

We'd scheduled it for sunset hoping for a nice display, but it was overcast so sunset was entirely uneventful. But the bath was nice.

For dinner we ate in the overpriced-but-surprisingly-tasty hotel restaurant, and went to bed early so as to be fresh for Day Two.

To be continued...


Quick Update: Visit To Shirahama, a Minor Heart Arrhythmia, and the End of Lent
Lots of Pandas in Shirahama, Japan 白浜ではパンダが多い -- Adventure World -- Nishimuro, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/4.5, ISO 1600 — map & image datanearby photos
Lots of Pandas
in Shirahama, Japan
白浜ではパンダが多い
A White Beach Shirarahama Beach (白良浜) Shirahama, Japan 白浜のベーチは白いですね -- Shirarahama Beach (白良浜) -- Shirahama, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/8000 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
A White Beach
Shirarahama Beach (白良浜)
Shirahama, Japan
白浜のベーチは白いですね
Up Close and Personal some bird at Adventure World Shirahama Japan -- Nishimuro, Wakayama, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 320 — map & image datanearby photos
Up Close and Personal
some bird at Adventure World
Shirahama Japan

It's been an active week since my last post. We spent a nice weekend in Shirahama, a three-hour drive from Kyoto, about which I'll post more later.

Upon our return, Anthony promptly got a cold and I had my first heart-arrhythmia episode in 20 months. Like last time the Sunrythm I took at home didn't work, but unlike last time they decided not to shock me back into a regular rhythm. Rather, the doc gave me a different drug in the same class (Flecainide, sold in Japan as タンボコール) with instructions that I should return if it didn't help within seven days. I was back in normal rhythm in about an hour.

So, we're all back on our feet, and I'm back to my normal life feeling overwhelmed with photography and Lightroom plugin work. But I've got a great weekend to look forward to: I gave up alcohol and desserts for Lent, but it ends after Mass on Saturday evening, so I'll visit some photography friends soon after for an evening of drinks and warm conversation.


A Few Cold/Blustery/Rainy Cherry-Blossom Pics from Southern Kyoto
Canopy of Blossoms near the Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) Nagaokakyo city, southern Kyoto, Japan -- Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 70mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 320 — map & image datanearby photos
Canopy of Blossoms
near the Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮)
Nagaokakyo city, southern Kyoto, Japan

Fumie had a ballet performance this weekend down in Nagaokakyo City, and I had some hours to kill after dropping her off for the pre-performance rehearsal, so I met up with some friends to visit some local sites with the camera.

この間の日曜日、長岡京市の桜を見に行きました。雨と風の間にちょっぴり撮影できました。

The weather was unpleasant (cold, rainy, and windy), but there was a brief respite just as I was arriving.

desktop background image of a cherry-blossom scene near the Nagaokatenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) Nagaokakyo City, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan. -- Lakefront Lane immediately parallel to the “ canopy ” lane seen in the first photo -- Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/800 sec, f/2.2, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Lakefront Lane
immediately parallel to the canopy lane seen in the first photo
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desktop background image of a cherry-blossom scene near the Nagaokatenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) Nagaokakyo City, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan. -- Nice Pink Tinge -- Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/1000 sec, f/2.5, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Nice Pink Tinge
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Morning Stretch -- Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/800 sec, f/2.5, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Morning Stretch
Feeding the Birds -- Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 42mm — 1/2500 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Feeding the Birds

The little lake between the road and the shrine has a series of boardwalks on it, and it seems that they were all recently rebuilt with bare wood....

Bare Wood -- Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine (長岡天満宮) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/11, ISO 720 — map & image datanearby photos
Bare Wood

I'd think it'd look better with some nice stain, but perhaps they'll let nature do that over time. For reference, here's what it looked like a year and a half ago:

Sep 2012 18ヶ月前、再工事の前 -- 長岡天満宮 -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2012 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/640 sec, f/2.5, ISO 250 — map & image datanearby photos
Sep 2012
18ヶ月前、再工事の前

It was cold and the rain was increasing, so didn't spend much time around the actual shrine complex. But for reference, this is the location where I shot Cute Little Melodrama in Five Photos a couple of years ago.

We took a couple of hours for a long early lunch to escape the weather, during which the rain mostly stopped, so we headed into the mountains for 15 minutes to check out the Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) that we'd seen on the map.

Impressive Kura (Fireproof Storage Building) Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/320 sec, f/8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Impressive Kura (Fireproof Storage Building)
Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺)
Typical Country Temple Scene behind the main building on a path leading up the mountain -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/5, ISO 360 — map & image datanearby photos
Typical Country Temple Scene
behind the main building on a path leading up the mountain

This temple doesn't have a lot of cherry trees, so it wasn't the prime time for its foliage. I suspect it'd be wonderful in the summer and awesome in the fall. But I liked it nevertheless due to its simple authenticity. It exists to serve the locals, and as such is not a tourist destination. In fact, we were the only people there.

Dragon-Spout Detail I presume water comes from his mouth at times -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO 280 — map & image datanearby photos
Dragon-Spout Detail
I presume water comes from his mouth at times

There were two paths up the mountain to a sub temple, one of which was a set of covered stairs. We took that path down.

About to Head Down -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
About to Head Down
First Leg Down -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO 560 — map & image datanearby photos
First Leg Down
From Inside -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO 720 — map & image datanearby photos
From Inside
Cascading Down -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/7.1, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Cascading Down
Nearing the Bottom -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/100 sec, f/7.1, ISO 640 — map & image datanearby photos
Nearing the Bottom
Back Garden of the main temple ( not pretty now, but should be wonderful in summer ) -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 24mm — 1/400 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Back Garden
of the main temple
( not pretty now, but should be wonderful in summer )
Another Steep Walkway coming from the building in the background -- Yokokuji Temple (楊谷寺) -- Nagaokakyo, Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 @ 26mm — 1/640 sec, f/2.8, ISO 160 — map & image datanearby photos
Another Steep Walkway
coming from the building in the background

We eventually returned to the cherry blossoms of the first place we were at, and although the rain had stopped, the wind had picked up considerably to frozen gusts that sliced right through you, so I didn't use the camera again, and was happy when I could retreat to the comfort of the concert hall and Fumie's performance in The Nutcracker.


Controlling Exercise Sweat in a Hot Climate: Under Armour HeatGear Sonic Compression Long-Sleeve

During aerobics at the gym I work up quite the sweat. It's good to work out, but the sweat is uncomfortable and can be unsociable/dangerous if it makes for a slippery floor or splatters someone, so I've been trying a few different shirts to hopefully get things under control.

I'd been using the Uniqlo Dry T-shirts that I wrote about two years ago, but they're for daily wear, and workout amounts of sweat overwhelm them.

I finally found a fantastic shirt, the Under Armour Men's HeatGear Sonic Compression Long Sleeve (available at Amazon, though I bought mine at Amazon Japan). The Large size is perfect 6'4" (192cm) height... the sleeves are actually long enough, and the clingy/compression nature of the fabric puts an end to the sticky feeling that arises from wet fabric repeatedly draping against and away from the skin.

In my limited experience so far, they dry quickly though don't stay dry during the workout, but the drying effect makes for noticeable coolness, especially early on. It's much more comfortable than other shirts I tried. And after the workout, they dry remarkably quickly.

I tried mine the day I received it, and ordered another the moment I got home.

Recommended.


Photoshoot with Ikuko Among the Plum Blossoms, Part 2
Up Close and Personal Ikuko and plum blossoms -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/2000 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Up Close and Personal
Ikuko and plum blossoms

This article continues from part 1 about last week's photoshoot with Ikuko-san among the plum blossoms at the Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine.

先週、育子さんと一緒に撮影しました、北野天満宮の梅林で。 今日記事前半の続きです。

Bobblehead Ikuko good example of why one must be careful with a wide -angle lens 首振り人形の育子さん — 広角 レンズ使えば 注意 しないといけないね -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/2500 sec, f/1.4, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Bobblehead Ikuko
good example of why one must be careful with a wide-angle lens
首振り人形の育子さん — 広角レンズ使えば注意しないといけないね

This is at the banana-juice tree.

Less Bobbleyheadish 首振りぽくない -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 98mm — 1/500 sec, f/2.8, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Less Bobbleyheadish
首振りぽくない
Normal Smiling Ikuko 普段の育子さんの笑顔 -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/2500 sec, f/1.4, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Normal Smiling Ikuko
普段の育子さんの笑顔

Tilt your head down a bit, I instructed, and bam!, such a different look:

Strong Presence 強い · 「おでこを 一寸 だけ 下向 きへ」の後 -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 24mm f/1.4 — 1/1600 sec, f/1.4, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Strong Presence
強い · 「おでこを一寸だけ下向きへ」の後

And another slight change creates another dramatic difference:

Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/1000 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos

Here's a wigglegram to give a sense of the orchard's feel.

Animatable — slowly sweep mouse from side to side to view effect
写真の上をマウスで左右にゆっくり動かすといろいろな撮影効果を楽しむことができます。
Just Happy ただの御幸せ -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/1250 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Just Happy
ただの御幸せ
Slightly Thoughtful 考え込んでいる -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/1600 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Slightly Thoughtful
考え込んでいる

Admission to the plum grove also gets you some tea and sweets.

Plum Tea of Some Sort 梅の茶 -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 2200 — map & image datanearby photos
Plum Tea of Some Sort
梅の茶
Just Add Water -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 2000 — map & image datanearby photos
Just Add Water
Inquisitive Look -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/1250 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Inquisitive Look
Not Bad but wish it weren't cropped so tightly 育子 さんはめっちゃスマットですが 、写真 の 構図 はちょっと狭い、ごめん -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/800 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Not Bad
but wish it weren't cropped so tightly
育子さんはめっちゃスマットですが、写真構図はちょっと狭い、ごめん
Having Fun 遊び -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/800 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Having Fun
遊び
Okay, Enough of That 遊び終わり -- Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine (北野天満宮) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2014 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/640 sec, f/2.5, ISO 800 — map & image datanearby photos
Okay, Enough of That
遊び終わり