Sensoji Temple (Tokyo, Japan)

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The boys recently got hooked on the book  I Can Read with My Eyes Shut, by Dr. Seuss and in it the big cat explains to the little cat, “the more that you read, the more you will know and the more that you learn the more places you will go.”  I hope if we can teach them anything in life we teach them to live this.  Right now they just seem to like the part about Foo Foo the Snoo.  (you’ll have to read the book to get it.  Or maybe revert to being 3)

We read a little bit about Tokyo before we visited a few months ago and we were only there for a short time.  I wasn’t sure how to explain about culture and the differences/similarities they would experience when we traveled there.  Can 3-year olds pick apart the pieces of what makes them who they are in the Japanese/Canadian/American/Singaporean/European lifestyle they know in our house?   Can they tell the difference between living in Seattle and visiting Tokyo?  Do they know how crazy we were for taking them on such a long airplane ride?

I bought this book hoping it would help explain:

But when we saw this:

and the boys had way more questions-“why are they riding in the buggy? Why are they wearing that hat? Is it a party?  Where are they going?” For me, it was pretty neat to follow a couple in wedding attire similar to what my grandma and grandpa wore in their celebration photos to a street full of treats I’ve loved trying in their kitchen my whole life.

And it was even more special sharing this with my boys.

The guys were intrigued but a little scared of this ‘parade’

And we all took guesses about what this sign could mean.

We stood back and took in the beauty of the temple.

And the boys wondered about the smoke.  (They are very intrigued with anything to do with FIRE right now.)

Somewhere near a bathroom we stopped and took this photo.

And though I don’t think they’ll remember much of this trip when they’re older, it was neat to see them exploring, wondering and taking everything in.  We still have the book at home, these neat pictures from halfway around the world,and maybe a little bit of understanding of a place different than where we live and a little bit of longing to go back.

Hopefully soon.


6 thoughts on “Sensoji Temple (Tokyo, Japan)

  1. I think your stories you tell them about it and the photos you took will help keep it in their memories. And what wonderful memories! I loved reading about that trip and seeing the pictures.

  2. We were in Tokyo last summer and though, my kids are a little bit older than yours, were still full of questions especially when visiting temples and shrines. My son was fascinated with all that smoke too and the cleansing stations. I think that your pictures and even your blog as a travelogue will help them remember this special place. You’d be surprised at little things they may remember from this trip.

  3. Japan has a special place in my heart…having lived there at two different points in my life and hoping to live there again in a few years. So glad you were able to share such a special trip with your kids. Even if they don’t remember all of the details, being able to look at these great pics will bring the trip back to life for them when they are older.

    Happy New Year!

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