Nagano-ing Around

Final Part of our Nagano trip. And it's too bad I finally started shooting in RAW format instead of Jpeg on this final day because i learned that RAW can save so many pictures with the wealth of light information stored in each file. Any amateurs out there like me that care about editing your photos later you gotta start shooting in RAW!

The main lobby of Senshinkan Matsuya Ryokan - highly recommended!

the local Shiga Kogen Beer we drank. good stuff. we passed the super small factory/house they were making this in on the walk back from the monkey park.

Oyaki is one of the famous foods from Nagano. Its kind of like chinese buns filled with various stuff.

the lady we went to said they were all vegetables only. we got white bean, pumpkin, green veggies, and some other stuff. okyaki is good stuff.

on the street leading to Matsumoto castle in Matsumoto city. I guess its a frog city cuz i saw frog stuff all over the place.

whats the word im looking for? i'm drawing a blank. dichotomy?

check out this awesome shrine to a parking lot. i dont know if thats what it is but you know, what is going on here.

Matsumoto Castle is one of four castles designated as National Treasures of Japan. made of wood. this is a bootleg HDR made from combining the best elements of overexposed and underexposed shots from 1 RAW.

it was pretty cold and dark, especially because you had to put your shoes in a plastic bag and walk around in slippers.

lots of super steep stairs.

Swans through slots used by archers and gunmen

these are for my pops

this is a bootleg HDR made from combining the best elements of overexposed and underexposed shots from 1 RAW. but this one came out kind of weird.

Apples from Nagano are famous too. I kind of like how this ultra wide angle takes product shots and distorts the background.

Miso is famous from nagano and so is miso icecream. tasted like vanilla basically. see! doesn't this lens take cool product shots?

Nagano is a good example of a town that developed around a temple as opposed to a castle. Zenkoji temple. It's one of the most visited temples in Japan. Its super sacred. You're not even allowed to eat icecream on the grounds we found out. But why the hell is there Country music blasting out of it right now?!!! How about you're not allowed to play country music at this super sacred Japanese temple dudes? Hey girls, are you enjoying trying to pray to the super loud sounds of twanging music made by the bastard red necked red haired great great step children of imperial invader commodore Mathew perry? check the video for a listen

The Rokujizō are statues of the six Bodhisattvas, who gave up Buddhist enlightenment, in order to provide salvation to others. The Bodhisattvas are said to be able to commune with the six realms of hell, starvation, beasts, carnage, human beings and divine beings.

Two guys who are so popular their eyes have been rubbed out. The temple contains a statue of Binzuru, a physician who was said to be Buddha's follower. Visitors touch the statue and then their corresponding body part in order to cure that ailment. Do Japanese people have bad eyes? cuz they certainly rubbed the sh!t out of ol' Binzuru's

It hasn't snowed in tokyo for the 2 winters i've been here. so its cool to see temples with lots of snow on them.

come on now! a charm vending machine!

a dude and a tanuki at some random alter place near the temple.

Soba is maybe the most famous food from Nagano. we had it and were super hungry still, just like every time I eat soba. maybe i'm just a neanderthal or unrefined, but i just don't get soba. I could eat 10 plates of this and still be hungry.

A side note, at the monkey park while photographing those little baby monkeys fighting, another baby monkey was diggin' into my back pocket. Everyone including me thought it was funny and cute. later during the walk back i realized I lost my phone. I way! thats totally awesome and cute but totally sucks if that little bastard stole my phone! I ran back for 5 minutes along the icy snow trail, but my phone ended up being on the floor next to the ticket office counter :) and :( We saw like 1 olympic facility in Nagano, but they weren't even on my list of things I care about so we didn't see anymore. again if you're in Japan for like 2 weeks or more i recommend it, but for shorter trips you've got plenty else to see. So that's it for Nagano! What's next?