I wanted to visit Fushimi Inari Shrine this trip because it looks so cool and is one of the top tourist destinations that I haven’t been to. In the past I wasn’t so interested in seeing the touristy stuff, and since I was always with a local (Mariko), I enjoyed going to places that a native Japanese person enjoys. But lately I see a lot of photos from friends who visit the touristy places and I start to think… “Shootz, I haven’t even been there even though I have visited Japan so many times!” And I kind of have a new outlook on life… where I want to experience all sorts of things and not really care about stuff that doesn’t matter. For instance, looking like a tourist used to bother me a little, but now I don’t care about it. Anyways, the feeling of being a tourist might last only a short while, but the memories of visiting an amazing place will last a lifetime! And you know what? I am a tourist after all! Why try to pretend that I’m not?
Also, as I try to look for positivity in all things, I realize that being a tourist can actually be fun and that you can have some interesting interactions with the locals, who are almost always friendly and generous with their time.
So this trip when Mariko asked me what I wanted to do and see, I included Fushimi Inari Shrine and Himeji Castle on the list. I also mixed in some local stuff, like seeing a baseball game, and it turned out to be a great mix of activities, with items being removed from the bucket list, and precious memories created!