Japan, Post #3: Nara

I know, the disclaimers are getting old but you never know when someone new will tune in.  And while we can’t imagine how anyone could be anything but glued to our silly vacation photos, if you are in fact seeking our professional work, don’t forget that you can view this blog by category (weddings, wee ones, etc.)… just a helpful hint! 

Disclaimers:

1) These are just tourist pictures, the cheesy ones that everyone takes on vacation, and are not meant to be viewed as professional photography.  We took only one camera, a couple of zoom lenses and no lights: we were on vacation afterall!  We’re definitely not seeking employment with National Geographic here.  

2) We’re not experts on Japan, Japanese culture or religion so take everything I say with a grain of salt. Estimate that I’ll have my facts right about 54% of the time.

Nara was the capital of the empire for a stint in time and makes a great day trip from Kyoto.  Famous for Chinese architectural influence and the plethora of deer that roam the old section of the city like large, horned squirrels, its a trip we highly recommend.  We were definitely missing animal companionship and took an immediate liking to the deer, who in turn took a liking to us because we usually had food on hand.  Deer biscuits are for sale at nearly every shop though its not uncommon to see a gaijin tourist such as ourselves munching on them mistakenly since we can’t read!

Here’s some photos of Sam making friends as well as a photo of a deer who stole a map from an unsuspecting tourist…mmm, tasty.

Todaiji temple is the largest wooden structure standing on the planet today and it houses a massivie bronze buddha known as the Daibutsu Buddha.  I just think its a cool temple because it has horns:

Housed within the temple gates are the most amazing wood sculptures I have ever seen, a pair of massive warriors carved in the 13th century who guard the temple.  Unfortunately the picture below doesn’t do them justice due to the protective wire mesh and general lack of scale but they look as though they could spring to life at any moment.  Similar but smaller scary looking dudes were in the main hall of Todaiji but they don’t come close to the guards.

Here’s more photos from inside the temple of the Daibutsu Buddha:

Speaking of the Buddha, in the back of the temple there is a pillar with a hole carved in it, legend has it that its the size of the Daibutsu Buddha’s nostril.  Legend also has it that if you can crawl through the Buddha’s nostril, you are guaranteed enlightenment… not a bad deal if you happen to be small.  Its a big attraction with the school kids, this little guy had to corkscrew himself a bit to get through!

Tomorrow we’ll take a break from Buddhism and talk food…. Mmmm…..

Purifying myself before entering a temple:

View of Nara:

 

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