Saturday, October 9, 2010

Gardening at the Museum

One of the great benefits of having so many visitors is that we get to visit so many fantastic places in Tokyo. Our most recent visitors, two old and dear friends, hankered after a trip to the Tokyo National Museum after visiting the Tokyo-Edo Museum. Their timing was perfect as torrential rains pounded down outside, so we strolled about soaking up some Japanese history and culture.

Despite being indoors, there was plenty of nature present in the assorted objects on display. The tea bowl pictured at the top of this post caught my eye for the large praying mantis displayed on the side. A welcome guest in any garden, the praying mantis makes short work of garden pests by simply eating them. Boldly looking out from the side, this little guy makes for a serious cup of tea, if you ask me.

As the days gradually get cooler and the slant of light changes Japan happily moves toward fall. Famous for its seven flowers of fall, this large bowl (or plate, your choice) showcases one of them - bush clover - simply and to full advantage. It is perhaps also evidence of the historical significance of these blooms.

Melons are truly one of my favorite things in the world, and this bowl was too lovely to just pass by. While the melons do remind me a bit more of squash (another favorite thing of mine in this world), the vibrant colors started my mouth watering.

Planning to go
Rain or shine, the Tokyo National Museum is well worth a visit. One of a number of museums in Ueno Park, schedule a full day to peruse the collection and surrounding gardens at ease. A few minute's walk from the station, and you'll be surrounded with any number of delightful objects telling the story of Japan (and other parts of Asia) in no time.

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