Sunday we spent the morning at church for their Autumn service. It was basically the same service as the one during Obon except this time they had chairs for everyone to sit on.
After the service, Satoshi, my MIL and I went to Uji. It is about 40 minutes from the Higashiyama area by train.
I have visited Uji with my Aunty Merle and with Satoshi during various times of the year. This was the first time to visit the Tale of Genji Museum. This museum showcases "The Tale of Genji" and the culture of the Heian period in Japan.
I studied this in college but to tell you the truth, I don't really remember much about the story (guess I should go back and read the book I have stored away...somewhere...)
Anyway, my MIL had been wanting to visit this museum for some time now. Last year was the 1000 year anniversary of the tale being written by Murasaki Shikibu.
Most of the displays were in Japanese, so I couldn't understand most of them, but did find the display on incense intriguing. The display had different items like clove, sandalwood and other items which were combined to make different fragrances for incense.
After walking around the museum and the Ujigami Shrine (the shrine is a UNESCO world heritage), we walked across the river to the Uji shopping arcade.
My MIL was interested in checking out the sweets at Nakamura-Tokichi, a famous green tea shop in Uji.
We found the shop and a VERY L-O-N-G line waiting to get into the cafe. Instead of waiting for a table, we went across the street to Yamakawa, a patisserie.
This tiny patisserie also had a cafe, so we signed our name to their waiting list and after about 15 minutes, had a table.
If you are going to eat anything in Uji, get something made from green tea because Uji is known for their matcha (powdered green tea).
Satoshi got their sencha (roasted green tea) roll. My MIL got the matcha ice cream and a slice of baked cheesecake (she found the ice cream too strong and made Satoshi eat most of the ice cream). I got their matcha vanilla (matcha cake with matcha mousse, a layer of vanilla mousse and adzuki bean and a layer of vanilla whipped cream). This dessert was really light, and the sweetness of the vanilla layers balanced out the bitter matcha layers.
It was a beautiful day and we were glad to get my MIL out of the house.
Tale of Genji Museum
45-26 Uji Higashiuchi
Admission: 500 yen (about US$5)
Open: 9:00-17:00, Closed on Mondays
Closed Tuesdays and every 3rd Thursday