I didn’t have this city on my list, but since I heard so much it on my way I considered spontaneously to give it a try. Thanks to the instruction of my friends Manaya and Mariya traveling with the train is easy now and I find my way to the city of Nara. This city has been the first capital of Japan in the history.
Directions and traffic signs usually have an additional English description, so finding the way to the right platform is easy. At the train ticket machines you also can switch to English mode, so it’s also not too hard to get around in Japan. The people hardly speak the language though, but most people are still very helpful and patient when you ask them.
I notice also in this city how clean it is. There is no litter, but still everyone produces a lot of plastic waste and there are no litter boxes in public. Whatever garbage you have you need to carry around the whole day to dispose it at home. This needs a lot of discipline, but it’s working fine in Japan. At least in the areas that everyone can see… In exchange there are public toilets everywhere, of course free of charge.
I find my guesthouse in tiny street in the center of the old town. The city is especially famous for two things: deers running in the streets and a giant Buddha statue – without deer.
First I march to the big park nearby. There are Sika deers living for centuries that are holy and voracious. They are not shy, don’t stay between the trees but just walk on the streets and know that people have food. There are little shops where people can buy some special crackers that the deer love so much that they sometimes get pretty offensive to get them. I make videos of girls who start offering a cracker to one animal and a few seconds later is chased by ten deers. It’s hilarious.
The temple of the famous Buddha statue is close and a giant statue must be inside a giant building. The size of the temple and the statue take my breath away.