|We ran across this container just lying on a sidewalk, and I have no idea what it was. They don't eat pickled turtle around here, do they?|
|The Warner and Fowler boys yucking it up outside a 7-Eleven, which are very common here on the ground floors of tall buildings.|
Our first order of business was finding an ‘English-speaking’ ATM, which wasn’t as easy as you might think. Having lived in Japan, Mike and Julie guided us through town to find a place to have lunch, where Tate had the misfortune of having miso soup spilled all over him (I felt even worse for our non-English speaking waitress, who seemed positively horrified that the poor little guy got a miso shower!).
|This is what the entrance to a Japanese parking lot looks like; the robotic system 'files' your car, then retrieves it when you want it.|
The town of Kobe is very clean and very modern, with no hint whatsoever of any earthquake-affected structures (other than the fact that many seemed recent); apparently the Port of Kobe was literally rebuilt from the ground up after the earthquake. Mike (firmly in the lead with map in hand) then led us to the subway, which took us a few miles to the base of the hills. Fortunately the clouds parted a bit so we could see below, and we had a nice walk down through garden paths and a lush, green forest, with great views of a waterfall along the way. Although Tate is usually warm, he was uncharacteristically huddled inside his rain jacket, and occasionally complained “I smell like miso soup!” Poor kid will probably never eat the stuff again.
|The view from the top very much resembled the view from the Berkeley Hills.|
|Flower beds being tended to at Kobe Nunobiki Herb Gardens.|
|Construction by large monkeys in the area?|
|This appeared to be Kobe's official 'symbol', or perhaps it is a representation of Kobe in Japanese?|