by Donnie Hayden © 2014, all rights reserved
Actually this post is not about Golden Pond, but a Golden Palace on a pond or be it, a small lake. But one has to name something, something and it seemed like a good idea at the time.
I must digress here to state what may or may not be obvious. These posts from our travels are neither a journal or in day by day, hour by hour chronological order. Part of this is due to my love of words and my tendency to write many of them. I do try to think of others in that I ask myself, what would I want to see or want to learn about while in Japan? I try to keep these posts interesting and informative to the best of my ability.
Another issue is that even in the short time that we have been here, we have done so much; seen so many things. I have taken lots of pictures and when we return, I will just have to decide on what to do with them. Lastly, there is the lack of WIFI in Japan. With iPhones, an iPad and a laptop with us, we certainly have the means to post content and pictures in several ways, but outside of where we are staying, there is no internet access.
Oh, there are, WIFI access points everywhere and most are secured networks which require a password. In order to use one of these you have to pay for them by the day or even the month. In order to do that, you need to be living here basically, as the Japanese are not too particularly fond of sharing their WIFI or broadband internet with foreigners. Many Japanese have WIFI at home for their devices. Their smartphones are tied to a prepaid (monthly) satellite service so that they can use their phones, pads, and devices pretty much wherever they are. I have seen several people on trains here, communicating over the internet through social media like Facebook. But, alas for us, we have to wait until we get back to where we are staying to access the internet and use services that require WIFI. I do not know what it will be like in Australia, but we are soon to find out.
But as you walk in Kyoto, soon you find yourself within the woods and then suddenly in the distance, you see this beautiful and phenomenal sight with a background of nature like a picture frame as if made to feature it. Here is the Golden Palace, actually overlaid with 24k gold.
I’m not sure why the bottom first section is not gold, perhaps so that no one could scrape it from the structure?
It is beautiful, but I am more awestruck at how it blends in with nature and the angles and the way in which such structures are built.
The material again is from nature and the construction by human binds hollow reed so tightly, it insulates and protects against insects, wind, snow and rain while keeping the structure warm in the colder months and cool in the warmer months.
Yes, it is the harmony of nature’s art and the art of humans which make so many things so beautiful in Japan! Though to build such a structure which still stands after so many centuries was long and difficult, naming things in Japan is often short and simple! These are contrasts or more like understatements, figures of speech that call our attention.
A golden palace on a pond is, what this is, but the words cannot describe its effects and affects upon the senses when they are first experienced and long remembered! The words are almost like a haiku poem of just three lines and 17 syllables, but hold great depth of meaning and purpose. But stated so simply and so matter-of-fact, they seem not able to convey the difficulty to master the art form and construct them like, the golden palace. It is just there as if it is supposed to be and always was, waiting only on you and I to discover its truths.
Oh sure, this place is a tourist attraction and many people come here to see it, both foreigners and the Japanese. And why not, wouldn’t you want to see a palace of gold on a pond, we did! So, perhaps this was an intention of its builders that even after the deaths of those it was built for, people would continue to be drawn here; support it and etc. But it’s importance is so much more to the Japanese and to me! It is an example of the art and harmony of, nature and humans simply drawing others to it as if calling out and stating simply; beautifully; poetically, here is…
…The Golden Palace on the Pond
I will close this post with another example of this understating and harmonious blending of the art of nature and humans.
This fountain is also part of the compound of the Golden Palace. The up righted or vertical stone looks like a fish that is leaping up the fountain. Notice the rainbow! 🙂