Knowing my keen interest in history and culture, Kyoko takes me around the Kyotamba countryside via secondary roads. Our first stop of the day is at Kurotani Japanese Paper Museum in Ayabe. Here 800 years of making traditional washi paper by hand is still alive.
Today the site is closed in preparation for a festival which begins tomorrow; however, Kyoko’s status as the (then) president of the Kyoto ISC and her pleas for her Canadian visitor gains us entry to the site even though we can’t see it in action. Bonus, we see all of it without a crush of people blocking the view. See the process here.
We take our time to fully enjoy the site and its excellent gift shop. As I browse through the exquisite displays, I chafe more than a little at my self-imposed one carry-on suitcase rule.
I buy nothing more than a few toothpick holders in the gift shop. Those I can squeeze in without damage easily enough. The rest of the treasures I store in my heart.