Saturday, November 20, 2010
thanksgiving Countdown #18...
Yesterday was New Adventures...Today's thankful post is about Family Adventures!
Today was one of the first days that we were able to go out of town as a family and go on an adventure since we have been in Japan. Patrick's work had been so busy, we had parties or other activities, etc - so we were so excited to get a chance to go away for the day together. Patrick had never even been on the train yet (the kids and I are pros by now :-)! So when Patrick mentioned he wanted to go to Mt Takao I was happy to oblige!
Mt Takao is said to be a sacred mountain, with temples and statues of the Gods, and is a highlight of Japan in the autumn months. The foliage is to be one of the best in the Tokyo region. We hopped on the train (about 30 minutes total to get there) and waited in line for the chair lift (we thought it was more fun than the cable cars). The kids absolutely LOVED the chair lift (and so did mommy and daddy) as we rose up and up and up and up into the tree line. I am glad it was not too high off the ground (and there was nets and trails under the whole thing too). I would have been happy to just ride that all day! But, we didn't!!!
We got off the lift and hiked for a little while. We found a good resting place and ate lunch to gain some energy and then we were back up the hiking trail. The kids did great, although we did have to carry Evelyn a few times (she still has a cold and was getting hard to breathe at points). But all-in-all they did awesome! We walked past all the stations, enjoyed the views of the temples, the statues, the markets selling fun items and food, but especially the views. It was a clear day, slight breeze, perfectly sunny. Simply breathtaking. I made sure we stopped a few times just to enjoy the moment around us. We had the kids carry a plastic bag and collect some of their favorite things from the trip (acorns, leafs, rocks) and we will make a craft with them tomorrow.
There were some steep stairs, but we hiked to the summit (599 meters)! The trip down went way faster!!! All said, we were there for about 4 hours. It truly was a great family adventure. It was super-duper crowded because a) it was a weekend and b) it is prime koyo season (colorful foliage) but we didn't mind. The only waiting we did was for the chair lift - which was only 1/2 hour or so. It was pretty fun to see all the people gawk over Gavin and Evelyn and their blonde hair!
I wanted to go to the "trick museum" when we were done - but we are going to save that for another day! For now, this family adventure was awesome, and something I will always be thankful for!