Friday, February 11, 2011

Ikaho Onsen *hotspring* Gunma

DSCF0102For a short winter break with the in-laws we all planned to go somewhere for my father in-law’s retirement celebration. He just turned 60 years old and that means he can now retire because that’s how Japan works.
So we all decided to visit the picturesque Ikaho Onsen in Gunma Prefecture. I’ve been there a few times before, a couple of times as an exchange student and once with Yuko a few years back. This time instead of visiting there in the dead heat of summer, we somehow managed to find ourselves in a historical, record breaking snow storm.
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We had a good time despite the super cold temperatures and relentless snowfall. I got to take a bath in one of those outdoor baths on the roof of the hotel we stayed at. It was cool seeing snow falling from the starry night sky into the hot pool I was in. Of course, no pictures of that I think…
DSCF0008We also visited a Showa period toy and car museum nearby. The Showa period for Japanese feels a lot like the 50s in the US and held in just as high regard. It would have been interesting living in Japan just as it was starting to become a decent manufacturer of electronics and machinery.
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It was the first time any of my in-laws and especially my father in-law had ever been to Ikaho, so it was a really good experience. Maybe next time I won’t be so up tight and soak in a large outdoor bath with dad the next time. I must build up good relations and try to fit in as best I can after all.

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