Nara: Nara Park

Day two of the Japan trip saw Senpai and I heading down to catch some deer :D

This is Sento-kun, Nara’s mascot. He kinda freaked me out a little… but hey, in a country full of Cute, he does his job by standing out and being extremely memorable. I’ll probably never be able to erase Sento-kun from my memories T^T

Anyway, that’s the special express train behind him. In addition to the train tickets that we’d already bought, we had to purchase another 500 yen ticket just to board this special Sento-kun train, which means that this particular train trip from Kyoto station to Nara station cost 1,110 yen (SGD $17). Whoa!

And then we reached the park. It was huge!

There are old women selling deer senbei (biscuits). If you buy them though, beware of acquiring deer gravity powers.

The old women are also in charge of cleaning up deer poo.

And then there was more exploring through the park. Seriously, it’s more like a small town, only greener. You have to walk hell of a lot too.

Senpai was very amused by this very short bridge.

My favourite picture from this bunch :D

We passed by another spot of deer hangouts.

These bunch of jokers were pretty rude. Senbei-Hidden-in-Propped-Ass-san was even seen tugging a poor deer’s antlers. Ouch!

The only good thing that came out of their antics was that if you hold deer senbei and run away, a horde of deer will chase after you. No joke. o_O

This deer had some amazingly warped antlers :D

And then we went to Todaiji, one of the temples in Nara Park.

Amazing architecture~~~

I’ve always been fascinated by the musculature of demon door guardians. And these two dudes here were gigantic! XDD

Just look at their doors <3

Giant Buddha, or the Japanese call it Daibutsu (大仏).

This was next to the giant Buddha, but I have no idea who this is. The hand gestures and urna is very Buddha-like, but if that’s the case, then why are there two!?! Oh well, if I had to choose I’d say that this is Avalokiteshvara because she is my favourite deity :P

A replica of Todaiji inside the temple.

I think we got our omikuji (fortune) here. I got half luck! Pretty bummer, but I kept it as a souvenir :P

This was a statue of some disciple I think. Didn’t really read the plate. But people were touching his feet for good luck. I was reminded more of an ascetic Buddha.

Also, Huiz saw this picture and said, “Why is he wearing a raincoat?” lol

If your fortune doesn’t read well, you can tie it here.

And then we set off exploring Nara Park again.

(It’s interesting to add that while passing by stalls selling souvenirs as we exited Todaiji, I overhead an old lady comment to her friends,「せんとくん可愛いね!」(Sento-kun is cute isn’t he?) While behind them, I mimicked Edvard Munch’s The Scream. Internally, of course. Seriously tio stun sia XDD)

We stopped by a store selling soft cream and senbei. While Senpai was ordering matcha (green tea) soft cream for the both of us, three deer came over and bowed their heads at her back, thinking that she was buying senbei. Wow!

And then when she passed me my matcha soft cream, one of the deer softly headbutted my back… Was pretty much traumatised after that incident XDD

Anyways, perhaps it was the weather or something, but the cone for the soft cream was as soft as paper. The dripping was a sight to behold as we tried to salvage whatever was running through our fingers as we headed for our next destination.

Next up, the gardens of Nara Park- and why we should have gone in autumn.


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