Sunday, January 5, 2014

Christmas in Japan and Korea

We went to Japan and Korea at Christmas time. It was interesting seeing the decorations in the stores and the hotels. Japan does not celebrate Christmas but that doesn't stop stores from trying to convince people to buy gifts. We spent very little time in the stores. One interesting store was the Japanese stationary company Itoya. There were some fascinating envelopes for giving people cash or checks as gifts. They appeared to be decorated with quilling and other paper crafting.
Our hotel was near the intersection where Cartier and Bulgari battled for glitz and glitter.
Bulgari building by day
Bulgari building by night

Street decorations in the Main Street of Ginza

A live cello player in a store window in Ginza.
Tree in the lobby of the hotel where we had lunch on our Mt. Fuji trip.

We went to Mt. Fuji on Christmas Day and were treated to Christmas carols by a group of hand bell ringers
Korea has a lot of Christians. I think it is the majority religion in Korea although I am not sure if there are more Buddhists or more Christians. We also got to Korea around New Year's Eve so some of the Christmas decorations were being taken down.
Tree in the plaza at N Seoul tower
Tree being taken down in the plaza of N Seoul Tower
A very unusual tree in the plaza of N Seoul tower. This is a close-up of one of the set below. I'll tell you more about it when I discuss that part of the trip.
I am going to try and do this with themes rather than a diary because it is too overwhelming to try and capture all the information I want to share in a day-by-day account. So there will be some text only posts where I try to share some interesting tidbits and some photo heavy posts on the things we saw. Let's see how this works out. I am hoping to get some shorter, more frequent posts out to cover the information more quickly than in the past.

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