Well, we made it on the train and were headed toward Zushi station...the one that I just can't figure out where I'm supposed to go...ever! We get to the station and get off the train because I'm pretty sure we are supposed to switch trains. I look at my train app, look at the train next to us, figure that's not the right one, think maybe we weren't supposed to get off our train, and so we get back on the train we just arrived on, but in a different car so people don't think we're lost. Ha! Two minutes before it leaves I decide to get back off again. We head up the stairs to look at the other options. I walk back and forth up here a couple times trying to figure out which way to go. Luckily, the janitor stopped mopping the floor and came over to say, "Where you want go?" I say, "Ofuna," hoping I pronounced it right. He walks me to a window and points down at a train that is just arriving. He says, "That one. Three stops. Ofuna." I then thank him profusely and run down to catch the correct train. Shew!
In about ten minutes we arrive at Ofuna station. I managed to find the correct exit, sometimes eenie, meenie, miney, moe works! We walk past a lot of yummy looking station restaurants and then out of the station. I've got the place bookmarked in my phone and so we start heading toward the dot. We walk on the bridge across the river and then to the left. We stop to look at the early cherry blossoms starting along the road. We also checked out the neat looking flowers sitting outside a flower shop. Not sure what they are called, but they remind me of cabbages.
We made a right turn at the next intersection and walked about a block when I realized that we were going in the wrong direction. So, we turned around and went back out to the main road then went left. Again, we walked by the flower shop, and again, I discovered we were going the wrong way. Garytt said, "Hey, I think I know where we are supposed to turn. It's back there where the bikers are." So, I listened to the five year old and followed him to a little alleyway. I also actually told my phone to give me directions to the temple. He was right! So, now we are on the right track. We get to the entrance and start our way up the steep road to the temple.
On the way up the hill the kids were able to reach out and touch bamboo trees. They were pretty impressed by how smooth a tree could be. There were also a few fallen trees so we were able to check out the inside of the tree as well. "Boring" was Mackenzie's report.
At the top of the hill I paid 300 yen for myself and 100 for Mackenzie. We got our tickets and walked in. Just inside the grounds we were able to get a nice view of the statue's head. It was also here that Mackenzie said, "are we going to see the lady with the person on her head?" I couldn't figure out what she was talking about...maybe it's time to change out my contacts.
From here I let Garytt, who definitely got his sense of direction from his Daddy, lead the way.
First we walked past the office and over to look at a few statues.
The statue on the left has a flame inside it. Apparently, this flame was lit from the fires left behind after the bomb was dropped in Hiroshima and there are rocks here from ground zero of both Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The purpose of this whole temple is to promote world peace and remember those who died in the blasts.
The statue is about 75 feet tall. Construction started in the late '20's and the outer form was finished in 1934 but the rest was put on hold due to wars and then it wasn't finished until 1960.
The trek up this hill took about five minutes. The RUN down took about thirty seconds. I'm pretty sure I almost dislocated my knee trying to keep up.
When we left the temple Mackenzie said she liked Ofuna so much that she wanted to explore. Garytt, who did not get a nap that day, was getting a little tired of walking around and was ready to go home. So, I let Mackenzie chose a path for us to walk for about five minutes before turning back and heading to the train station. I found the platform for our train and we had about a twenty minute wait for the train that went straight to Yokosuka. On the train Garytt got out is DS and played Mario Cart. Mackenzie sat back and watched the cities go by. At one point, she turned around and looked at me, then rubbed her hand on the seat and said, "Ooh la la! Such soft seats!"