Japan: Mystic fascination
The book “Memoirs of a Geisha”, which I had literally devoured during a week’s beach vacation in the fall of 1999, opened the doors to this fascinating country for me. After that I literally ate up everything about Japan that came into my hands. The foreign and unknown has always held an incredible attraction for me and so it was clear that I would travel to Japan someday.
When my mother attended a medical conference in Tokyo in the spring of 2004 and my dad did not want to join her, I jumped at the occacion to accompany her. The first trip was only a short stay of 10 days but it opened a new world to me, of which I wanted to learn more. My curiosity to get to know Japan, its culture and, above all, the freindly people, has not broken off since. In the fall of 2004 I decided to take Japanese lessons for two years, because for me communication is essential and a big part of getting to know another country and its culture. Of course, Japanese is not the simplest language, and by all means after taking classes for two years I am far from conversing in Japanese, but it has opened some doors for me and rewarded me with many unforgettable moments.
For both my mother and myself it was clear that after the first short trip, where we did day trips to Kamakura, Nikko and, of course, Kyoto, we really wanted to go for a longer time to get to know Japan better. After we kept talking about this fascinating country, with a culture so foreign to us and the warmth of the people, my dad was finally convinced to join us. So in autumn 2008 we went to Japan for the second time, this time for three weeks. We visited Himeji, Miyajima with Hiroshima and of course Kyoto again.
What fascinates me about Japan the most is the unknown, the unique and certainly also a bit of the legendary. Things and customs that we simply do not know in the Western world. What overpowers me again and again is the calm that I encounter in Japan. Even in the hustle and bustle of the metropolis of Tokyo, there are countless oasis of peace. In Japan it was the first time that I came into contact with this sense of unity and tranquility. What a treasure. And as a food lover, I always get my money’s worth in Japan, because the exquisite cuisine offers so much more than just sushi and sashimi!
After many blows of fate, triggered by the illnesses and the deaths of my parents within a very short period of time, I decided in the fall of 2013 to travel to Japan once again. This time, however, I was on my own. In just over three weeks I got to know many new places: Koyo-san, Takayama, Shirakawa-go, Kanazawa and Kurashiki. This time, I even spent a whole week in Kyoto, because this city has so many incredible sights and quiet spots to offer. I was there for the climax of the autumn coloring, a spectacle beyond comparison.
Meanwhile, some years have passed since my last trip to Japan and I am drawn back to discover more. At some point I hope to be able to offer you a retreat in this mystical country and to be able to bring places of peace and wonder, and above all, also the warmth of the people closer to you.