Travel is good for the brain – part 2 Japan

The second half of our spring trip that gave my brain a good shakeup was in Kyoto, Japan.  I’m really drawn to the Japanese way of life, sense of style and history.  Kyoto especially had long been on my travel wish list.

We spent most of our time there visiting gobs of temples, admiring beautiful cherry blossom trees just starting to bloom and eating like crazy!

We decided to make Kyoto an adventure in food as well as history and natural beauty.  We tried high end kaiseki, low end (but great!) conveyor belt sushi, fermented wonders, yummy sweets, street food, you name it – we tried it!

beautiful tamago rolled omlette (not done by me but something to aspire to!)

Loved so much of what we ate – and how we ate – that I’ve tried to incorporate it into my eating at home.  After the trip, I figured out a bunch of recipes that mimic what we had in Japan – including eating fish for breakfast(!), cooking mushipan steamed cakes, and working on perfecting my technique of the tamago rolled omelet in the new purple tamago pan I bought (oh so good!).  I got a little book of 300 bento style recipes and have been experimenting with all sorts of new things.   Cooking lotus root is a delightful new find!

The way we ate while in Japan made so much more sense to me, it felt much healthier than what we do at home even though we’re pretty healthy eaters by North American standards.   I’m eating so much fish now that I can probably ditch that Omega-3 vitamin!  😀

Our last day in Japan we left the traditional beauty of Kyoto for the lights of Osaka.  Capsule hotels are so fascinating and I always wanted to try one, but they don’t often allow women.  The husband was able to find one that did and he generously put up with a crappy room all so I could sleep in a tube on the women’s floor.  He’s a good man! 🙂  The experience was super fun but not one I will repeat.  Love the energy in Osaka, so many people, crushing almost – but everyone is respectful and polite.

a few of the mushipan experiments

Japan shook up my brain in a great way, exposing me to some beauty and giving me renewed interest in food and cooking after having been in a rut for awhile.  I was so set on getting just the right mushipan recipe that I went nuts trying tons all in one day.  The husband saw the day’s production all laid out on our counters and wanted to know if I was starting a mushipan factory!  But it’s great, stimulating new areas of the brain and learning new things can only be good for all other areas of my life.

Below are some pics from Japan.  Next blog is back to stuff about glass and mosaics as summer is now upon us and I can get to work under the glorious sun outside. ☀


8 thoughts on “Travel is good for the brain – part 2 Japan

    1. 🙂 Sorry it is so delayed in my reply – but you’re so right, restaurants are expensive there! Besides, it is always fun to poke through a supermarket and see new fun things that you can’t get at home, isn’t it! Love finding fun candies or snacks that are different. 🙂


  1. Your text is really interesting, dear Mercedes, and the photos are fabulous. Real nice voyage you made there.



  2. Cool pictures and story! Yeah, with eating that much fish you don’t need the highly processed fish oil capsules. Fish is also a good source of Vitamin D. There’s a reason Japan and other European countries don’t have a rampant obesity problem. Culture and lifestyle play a significant part. Looks like you both had a great time.


    1. 😀 so happy to see your name pop up!! 😀 thanks for the really nice comment! you’re so right, there is a reason they don’t have the obesity problems we do here. it is such a healthier way of life in terms of food, walking way more than we do as well and a seemingly calmer society in general. i ate pretty healthy before, but now it is even more so after trying to follow more their ways. hopefully it does some good. 🙂 hope all is well with you!!

      Liked by 1 person

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