5:54 PM, Wednesday, May 18th 2005:
Strangest place I've ever been in my life and I don't mean Japan...
Every answer is wrong.
It's probably because I'm asking the same question over and over and the answer isn't wrong, it's just really hard and has absolutely no guarantee of happiness. In fact the road is so similar that it's almost assuredly going to lead to the same place... but how will you know unless you walk down it?
Wow, I just realized how much relates to walking around in Kyoto. Every time I look down a street, it looks exactly like one I was just down - but I continue down the road and always seem to find something new.
I miss Jessica the way I would miss her if we were married and I was on a business trip. It's not a question of whether I can make it without her, I just don't want to try anymore. We're at a place where the only way we can know if we should get back together is to do it...and see.

It's like looking down this road at the sign way off in the distance that you can't read and assuming it's the same as the one at the end of the last street. I guess you could do that, but if you're even questioning it you might as well answer it.
Jess and I seem to have gotten to that point. It's no longer "what-if" we get back together and we regret it... it's "what-if" we don't try because we keep second-guessing it and we miss out on a happy life together? And really, that's what I meant by every answer is wrong. But I'm in a place now where I want to fault FORWARD. I talk about this all the time, but in all my decisions I'd rather fall UP the stairs than down the stairs. I say time will tell, but time can also pass you by and sometimes you have to act before you're 100% sure. Ahh, life is grand...

So this city is quite bizarre. It was one of the only major cities to not get decimated by the bombing in World War II so the majority of the old temples are still completely in tact, yet it's in the midst of this bustling city. Apparently Kyoto is in this mad dash to modernize almost at the behest of the incredible beauty and sanctity of these temples.

It's amazing how out of place these temples seem to the surrounding areas. I know a city can't just stop evolving because of temples that have been around for thousands of years, but they just don't belong next to a McDonalds. :-( That was the inspiration for the song and video for this entry. Trying to mix the sounds of the outside world with the epicness of these temples.
What's even more interesting is as you walk the little streets you'll come across these tiny shrines. It's literally a 7-11 and then Boom:
You go in that little door which opens up to a garden, like so:
And behind that door...
People's ashes are buried under these tiny shrines.
Thanks to Tim (short for Timer) for taking all these shots with me in 'em. He's handy to have around. But again, I just can't get over how all this incredible stuff is just stuck next to a friggin' Lawson's selling anime/porn mags. Then again, there just really isn't a lot of space so they're making due I guess. I'll be taking an all-day tour tomorrow that will get out of the inner city, so I have a feeling that this is just the tip of the iceberg and that the real temples will obviously not have so much of the modern world around it. Oh, and a tip to the angry emailer: half of what I say in this entry may be a moot point by the end of the day tomorrow, yet it will stay posted as that's part of the progression of the story. ;-)
And yes, the words that lady emailed me (and continued to email to me, but it's really just more of the same so no need to post) have stuck with me as I walk the streets. Not because I'm afraid she may have a point, she lost that respect by the second paragraph, but because I think I can make her understand. LOL. It amazes me I have the intelligence to recognize how angry she is with her own issues, yet I don't have the intelligence to let her go. I don't know the connection, but it is a glaring insight to every decision I make. As I walked the streets today I kept thinking of entries I could link her to that would give her more insight to who I was as she's so off-base. I thought of so many instances and then I went... "WHAT THE FUCK ADAM?!?! You can't SAVE everyone dude - let it GO." But if left to my own devices I feel I have to help EVERYONE to see universal truths. It is so hard for me to let go of something that I feel is so obvious. I guess I should be happy that I have those instincts, but man it's a bitch to feel responsibility to absolute strangers. Expecially pissy hateful strangers.
Before I sign off for the day, I gotta share a few cute things I saw. First up, my breakfast. What could be cute about a breakfast? What they considered was suasage and eggs:

Hot dog with ketchup.


That brought a big smile to my face early in the morning.

This old pup was cravin' some lovin' outside someone's shop and was very happy to have the highly experienced dog scratchin' hands of yours truly pay him a visit.

I know, they're the friggin' Beatles - but it's still crazy to out of the blue see them in someone's window just out of respect for their greatness.

Even on the other side of the earth getting out of school is 'cause for exuberance.

And finally, in my comedic mind I can pretend that this city was named by Chiyama's mortal enemy, but I have a feeling I'm just reading into it. ;-)

Expect some incredible stuff tomorrow...