Kamilah Taylor
Before leaving for Tokyo, we spent the morning sightseeing, at the Golden Pavilion and the Zen Garden.  Rokuon-ji Temple is known as the Golden Pavilion, or Kinkaku, because it has a Pavilion which is golden. Not fake gold either, some shogun went all out when designing his retirement home, and used actual thin sheets of gold on the outer walls.
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Now his will apparently stipulated that there should be a Zen temple there upon his death, so I got to see my first Zen garden. I stared at “15 rocks expertly laid out on white gravel” for 15 minutes, and maybe I would have gotten a taste of the infinite teachings if it had been slightly more quiet, but they were doing construction that day (restoration), so there was banging, which they of course apologized for.
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This miniature model of the zen garden may be more useful in giving a full picture of what it looked like.
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Then we went through more gardens, still part of the same property. I missed the Nara deer but there were cute duckies instead.
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So that was it for Kyoto. It has a lot of amazing historical stuff, but the city itself is not so charming. Still, I enjoyed my time there.
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