My friend Masumi and her friend Mariko took me to Asakusa. (pronounced a−sa−ksa. The ks is pronounced like the X in fox) There is a temple in Asakusa that is very popular probably because it is in Tokyo so it's close.
At the beginning there is this road with a bunch of little shops mostly selling traditional Japanese items and foods.
This is a paddle for Japanese badminton.
Here is the "birdie" you would hit around. Masumi told me that in the past it was a game only for women to play. Just like in most cultures in the past men and women had very defined roles and in Japan those roles were defined even down to appropriate sports.
These are huge sembei which are Japanese crackers. Usually they are small like the size of an average western cracker like a Ritz.
Here is some guy making them
I'm not sure what these are called but they have anko beans inside. Anko beans are in many Japanese desserts and snacks and are usually used as a semi sweet red bean paste.
Here is the finished product.
This is the entrance to the street with the shops.
And this is that street.
And again about half way down walking to the temple.
Here we are almost to the end. You can see the gate to the temple in the back.
And here is just at the end of the shopping area. That building in the back is not the temple. It's just a gate.
I'm not sure what all these lanterns are for or what they say.
Here we are at the gate. You can see the temple in the distance.
And here is the temple.
Lots and lots of birds.
This is just to the left of the path to the temple
Some of the decorations
The smoke from this fire is supposed to bring you good health.
This is a picture of the ceiling in the temple. If you want to see what's really inside you'll have to go yourself 😊
Some of the grounds around the temple.
And birds everywhere. Fortunately they didn't target me 😊
Near by some people were making mochi. Mochi is made by smashing rice into a dough and then you can make other things out of it.
Also near by was a parade. It was a holiday on that day, November 3rd.
I believe this is the Asahi Beer complex which was also very near the temple.
There are two cities in Tokyo that often get confused. Asakusa and Akasaka. Asakusa is where the temple is. Akasaka is the business district with very expensive hotels and restaurants.