No curve was too sharp for them and their bicycle. No puddle was deep enough to stop them. -- Friends by Helme Hein

30 August, 2009

Renewed appreciation for Picasso

This weekend I took advantage of the nice weather left in the wake of Typhoon 18 and visited Hakone, Tokyo's playground about 90 minutes away by train. The Hakone region is in the shadow of Fuji, but I didn't get to see it this time because the clouds closed in, leaving the first snow of the year on it's flat top. Instead of hiking, I visited the beautiful Hakone Open Air Museum halfway up the mountain.

The grounds are huge and I probably spent 2 hours just wandering around.

This is the called the Symphonic Sculpture. The tower was entirely made out of steel and stained glass, which looked like nothing from the outside, but the inside was gloriously colored. Each panel had some little hidden gem of a picture. It also made a beautiful echo sound as people walked up the staircase.

I would love a window like this in my dream home.

More koi...I love these greedy fish.

In 1984, they installed this Picasso exhibit, full of many of his original drawings, tapestries and clay pots. I hadn't known much of Picasso prior to this, but I developed a real appreciation for his art and the development of it over time after this exhibit.

This large Lincoln Log-like structure housed the incredible hammock below...

Oh, to be a kid and play around in there!

Hakone is bubbling with volcanic waters. One of the hiking trails I wanted to take was closed because of too many toxic gases from the ground. The museum had a hot spring foot bath for visitors.

After the museum, I took a dip in this onsen (note: I didn't take this picture, and there were no men in my onsen.)

I had lunch with this gray heron. We both had the fish, but mine was from Seven Eleven.

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