The Imperial Palace

Quite a while ago I went to the Imperial Palace grounds with a few friends for our Contemporary Japan class.  The class requires us to visit a different part of Tokyo each weekend and do “field work” so that at the end of every third week we can pick one place or monument and write a paper about it.  Nobody actually goes to all of the places, but rather picks one to write on and visits it with that in mind, but that’s beside the point.  My first paper was on this place, and I think I picked a pretty nice place to go.  We didn’t do a whole lot other than look around, take pictures, enjoy the scenery, and get a whole lot of sun, but it was still a good day.
So, we went to Tokyo Station, and when we walked out of the station itself, we saw this, which is depicting what Tokyo Station is supposed to look like (what it used to look like).

But this is what it really looks like right now…..

Saw some Engrish as we walked toward the Palace grounds.
It took us a while to find the entrance we wanted to go through, so we stopped and took some pictures that had nothing at all to do with what we were there for.
Olivia, Kim, Me, Loren, Elika, Xin
You can tell I’ve never done a jumping photo before.

We thought we were pretty clever.  I was the K!

 Our professor went on and on about these HUGE rocks that Daimyo (the government officials at the time, aka the head samurai) had to contribute to the building of the castle grounds back when the Edo period started.  He told us all about how one boat could only hold two rocks, and it took 100 men to carry each one.  We had all expected some magnificent rocks ten times larger than our bodies.  He stressed how important it was that we go up and touch the rocks, and realize just how amazing they really are.  These were the rocks.  We took this picture to give to our professor because we are kiss-asses, but impressive is not the word I would use to describe them.

 These rocks, and some other ones we saw later, were a little bigger, but I did not have chills going down my spine as I touched them.

The entrance!

An old guardhouse.

The gardens.

Something with religious significance.

I think the size of the fish were more impressive than the size of the rocks.

This bridge is only open to the public on Christmas and New Years, because it lets you in to the actual Palace.

I wasn’t kidding when I said we got sun.

 There was a lot of stuff to see, but most of it wouldn’t be very exciting for you to look at pictures of unless I typed out descriptions of what everything USED to be, which I don’t really feel like doing right now, so you can just enjoy what you got.
Oh, and I got a B on my essay.