Meta (Dropdown Menu):

August 16, 2007

Daimonji and Kyoto and Trains

Filed under: Uncategorized — espeed @ 11:20 am — Tags:

I’m back with more interesting tales of my time in the land of the rising sun.

The first thing I’m going to talk about is trains because they’re awesome and thus worth mentioning.

Japan has pretty incredibly figured out how to make the trains run on time, even without being fascist or italian.  So every subway and regular train always comes on time to the minute unless theirs been an accident.

That is to say, there’s a marquee at the station that lists the train and the minute it will come.  You wait there and it comes at that time or before.  It leaves when it’s supposed to leave.  Being the efficiency hack that I am, I can’t help but love such a system.  Trains I can accurately plan a schedule around.  Pretty awesome.

The standardization is also pretty awesome as well.  For the shinkansen and other long distance trains, (even some city trains)  tell you where to stand to get into the correct car, and you stand there, and that’s where your car is when the train comes.  This is true on countless numbers of stations on numerous different trains.  Everything works so much better when your country acts as one instead of a bunch of separate selfish entities.  Stupid federalism.

It was by such a system that I arrived in Kyoto, and while in the station I was able to grab some authentic Japanese ramen, which was good as one might expect.  A full meal, not the stuff you get in the states of course.  But actual goodness.

Kyoto is a pretty cool place as well.  There’s all sorts of history and stuff, which is important because history is from the past, and we all know that that shit repeats itself.  In this case, any day now, people are going to go on a temple and castle and shrine building frenzy, just like they did in the past  Be prepared.

Today (Thursday), I saw a pretty cool castle, and a cool “Golden Pavilion”  riding the buses around is pretty awesome, especially now that I understand how they work.  Unfortunately, not in an efficient way.  Usually you throw your money in the top.  But that only accepts exact change ( I’ve lost like 250 this way) it steals your money.

If you want change you have to put your money in a separate slot which is just for making change.  It seems like if you have put both functionality into the same box, you could use just one slot.  I just can’t imagine the reasoning behind separating it.

In any case, this evening I went to club and heard loud music and also saw giant bond fires lit in the shape of chinese characters, and also possibly a shrine gate, but that one was fuzzier.

Tomorrow is the Imperial Palace, and maybe some rafting, we’ll see.


  1. Well, perhaps like when we played Tanks, you are mistaking the aim of the slots. Maybe the main goal is to subtly, and in a seemingly justifiable manner, steal people’s money, with a second aim of accepting money for getting on the bus.

    I wonder how the ramen stand here stacks up to authentic Japanese. As always, I’m jealous.

    Since you mentioned standardization, I started to wonder what a country run by you would be like. Ah yes, fun times…

    Comment by Manny — August 17, 2007 @ 2:59 am

  2. Wow! You so lucky! I love your “history and stuff” beautiful pagodas etc but no Zeros or
    Kates and no memorials to the Kamikaze I’ll bet-I envy you seeing the pagoda temples and
    the torii! You talk about efficiency-that’s what I remember about my trips to Disney World
    how efficient Disney was in moving huge numbers of people around. You and I have deprived

    Do they still have paper dividers between rooms in the museums.

    You haven’t said anytning about the floor level toilets or have you found any yet?
    I hear that you sort of take a sumo position to do your business. Oh Ah So!

    Glad to hear you tried some ramen-no squid chips yet? D-ciduous

    Comment by Darrel — August 17, 2007 @ 4:24 pm

  3. Not in the museums I’ve been in. And I’ve seen those toilets, and that’s pretty much what you do. More interesting are the normal looking toilets and the fact that almost all of them are electronic. I’ll have some photos of them when I get back.

    Comment by Erek Speed — August 18, 2007 @ 8:07 am

  4. Haven’t you ever wanted to get change without buying a train ticket?

    Comment by Tom — August 26, 2007 @ 11:26 am

  5. Yeah, but I feel bad about asking. Usually, I just strategically buy things like train tickets in order to have enough small change. (Machines which take 10,000 bills are awesome.)

    Kyoto bus system is annoying simply because I didn’t understand, and that means it must have a poor UI.

    Comment by Erek Speed — August 26, 2007 @ 1:24 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment