Saturday, 7 March 2020

Kyoto 18th, 19th February - Hidden Needle shop

Arriving at Kyoto we found an 'English friendly taxi' He took us to our hotel - Hotel Inn Gion the second. Even though we were early they let us check in. How lovely is our room!

We went out and about at night to find somewhere to eat. It was all quite dark and you couldnt see into the restaurants. Eventually we found Chauo Chauo so we went in and sat round a counter and had gyoza and rice, so so lovely. For me this was quite brave. I really feel uneasy eating in company if i dont know them so sitting round a counter was an adventure!
19th February
Every day just kept getting better and better! First was the breakfast in our hotel i went for the japanese option. Lovely fish and bean thing and rice and seaweed with tea. Fair filled me up. We had thought we would head to the Kyoto museum and thats where we headed off too. We were walking down a main street when i realised we were at the shopping mall which had the Hidden needle shop - Misuyabari,  in it. I said to Scoobs could we have a look for it because i thought it might take more than one go to find it. So off we went. The shopping mall was long and colouful.

The instruction said go to the T junction almost at the end. Turn right and look for the pink shop on the left. Another instruction said to look for the Tarot shop and the purple hand, we found both and then you go down a small alley.
I might have squealed a bit :-) I recognised this door immediately from all the blog posts i had read about it.

There is a small beautiful garden with oranges on the trees for the birds.

The shop itself is tiny. The father (87) and son (below) are there. The son speaks good English. First thing to strike me was the inssanely small pins with animals and flowers. He gives you a magnifying glass to view them. The flowers had two versions, opened and closed :-)

The small travel sewing kits are insanely beautiful. He urges you to pull them our to see all the contents. I picked a black and white case.

All this time the father is telling Mark about the birds in the garden. I bought 8 of the animal and flower pins, one sewing kit (above) pins and needles.

It was just the most magical experience, and I am so glad i got to share it with Mark. I dont think i will ever forget it.

We went back out and started wandering down the other side of the mall. I knew that one of the Nomura Tailor shops was there and went in for a brief look around. Still managed to bag some liberty!
We saw we were beside the Nikishimi food/fish market so took a wander down there. how wonderrful it was.
Lots of stalls either side about 70% street foos and 30% gifts etc. You had to eat at the stall yhou bought the food from, no eating and walking! We walked the length first taking it all in then walked back down to choose our food.
First we had fried chicken.
Then shrimp on a stick

 Then rice balls with sweet soy sauce.

 It was a brilliant market but oh my goodness sensory overload!

 We tried to go to Kyoto Museum but it was closed so we went to a small cafe for a seat. Mark had orange juice and i had hot chocolate.

Totally shattered we went back to the hotel for a chill out, we went back out at tea time and after a bit of a wander found a place where you cook your own beef on a grill at your table. Service was a bit iffy but the food was amazing, I had skirt! My gran used to cook skirt a lot and it was amazing! We saw some Geisha I think they were Maiko getting in and out of taxis on the way home. Just an incredible day!

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