Golden Opportunities and a Short Farewell

Today was our second day in Kanazawa. Our day started off with a tour of the Hakukokan Museum, which is a Japanese gold leaf museum that is especially known for their thin gold slices. While on the tour, we made our own gold leaf crafts, were given a demonstration on how the gold was made, and were exposed to a variety of golden art. A few students even bought an ice cream cone covered in gold leaf!

Following our visit to the gold leaf museum, we went to the Higashiyama Higashi Chaya District. The town was set up as a demonstration of what the town would have looked like during the Edo period. We visited old houses where samurai and foot soldiers lived, stables, and walked through the town. We concluded this tour with a wonderful lunch at a small restaurant in the town.

In the afternoon, we took a trip to Seiryō University. At the university, we first listened to a presentation on the history of and pop culture in Kanazawa. This was given by three Seiryō University students and included a variety of information including a video on a popular activity in Japan called Purikura, which is a sophisticated photo-booth. Following the presentation, we chatted with twenty or so other students from the university. Afterwards, we listened to a lecture on Japanese business practices specific to traditional local shops.

After a quick dinner, we met back up with the students from the university for a night of bowling and fun! It was a fitting way to end the day.

After spending a bit more time in Kanazawa tomorrow, we will be heading to Eiheiji, where we will be spending three nights at a monastery to learn more about Zen Buddhism. As we'll be without internet during our stay there, this will be our last post until we travel to Kyōtō. Not to worry, though - we'll return with stories about our adventures in the monastery!

Luther students listening to a presentation about Kanazawa by students from Seiryo University.
A statue covered in gold leaf, of which Kanazawa produces 99% of the gold leaf found in Japan.
Author Andrew Avram after a night of bowling with Japanese students from Seiryo University.