Since coming back from being up North, I have had some time to rest before preparing to head off to Kyoto, Nara, and Osaka for a couple of days (a jam-packed couple of days!). However, that doesn’t mean I have been without some soft adventures.
I recently went to the zoo with a friend. Despite the view being mostly animal butts and closed for the season exhibit signs, I learned that Japan has a love for the Ueno Zoo pandas.
My friend and I decided to get in line to see the pandas as well, and this line was probably the longest line I’ve ever seen in my life. It was over a 70 minute wait time, but the time passed pretty quickly since my friend and I got to talking. When I finally got inside to see the pandas, there were people wearing panda merchandise and carrying cameras that looked like they should be on movie sets.
The people working at the zoo were moving people from section to section, making sure everyone had a chance to see different angles of the panda’s in their living space. When the pandas walked to another end, everyone RAN to the edge of the section they were allowed in while trying to snap photos. The pandas seem to find themselves in the Japanese news often as well. I guess the rarer an animal, the more popular they’ll be.
The Cherry blossoms were just about getting ready to start blooming around Ueno, and probably should be blooming now (there will be a post about that too!). Since there were no cherry blossoms yet to enjoy, my friend and I decided to get dessert at Nana’s green tea, one of my favorite places to treat myself to something sweet. They have all kinds of tea based desserts, but I especially enjoy their parfaits (Japanese parfaits are very different than the American idea of a parfait).
Sometimes more relaxed adventures like these while you’re abroad are good for the soul!