Barcelona part 2 - Other than Gaudi

Barcelona is such a lovely city. It is too bad I had a very limited time to explore. But here are some of the things I got to see.

There are many souvenir shops on La Rambla Street.

At the end of the street is Port Vell.

There stands Columbus Monument.

TRAMMET Light Rail System - this photo was taken right by the zoo.

Bicycle sharing system - bicing. That's a very eco-friendly way to move around the city.

Hard Rock Cafe is located at Plaça de Catalunya - The Who came to Tokyo in Nov. 2008.


Barcelona Part 1 - Gaudi

I spend three days in Barcelona, Spain this week. It is such a beautiful city - weather was perfect and the whole city is like art.

I was very lucky to have gotten a wonderful tour of Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família.

Of course, it is far from being finished. I was told that they are trying to at least be done with the construction of the exterior in 2026, the 100th anniversary of the death of its architect, Antoni Gaudi.

This is the model of the hyperboloid that is used as holes to have the sunlight come into the temple.

Here's the model of the structure of the sunlight hole. It is a composite of bricks and concrete, making it light, yet strong.

Our tour visited Parc Güell, also a work of Mr. Gaudi. The tour guide told us that it was supposed to be a planned residential development, but the plan came to a halt when the developer faced a financial difficulties. It must have been such a disappointment, for it would have been very interesting.

This is the view of Barcelona from the park. It is such a lovely city!

Finally, we visited Casa Batlló. It was so interesting to visit this building. Every floor and every room was so unique!

This is the view of the window of the 2nd floor looking outside to the Passeig de Gràcia.

In Barcelona, there are many Gaudi works thorough out the city.


Scenes from Tokyo This Week

Tokyo Sky Tree as seen from Shuto Expressway on Monday afternoon. The steel structure tower is now over 300 meters tall. It is now almost as tall as the tallest structure - Tokyo Tower, but this construction is not yet half way finished!

That night, it rained - a couple walks in a narrow street of Kagurazaka.

It snowed in the morning of Thursday. My yard was getting covered with snow.

This is Sendagaya Station around 8:30.

The Japanese Garden of Hotel New Otani in Akasaka had some snow.

But today, we had a spring-like beautiful sunshine.


Kanda River (the start of)

Kanda River or Kandagawa is very familiar with people that live in Tokyo. There was a famous song that bears the name of this river by a folk song group - Kaguyahime in the 1970s.

The river starts from Inokashira Pond and it used to be an important source of drinking water for the residents of Edo, an old name for Tokyo.

It starts here, on the western side of Tokyo and goes through the residential areas and through the city and finally ends up at Sumida River on the eastern side.

There were ducks that were playing together in the river. This picture is taken from the first bridge away from the start of the river.

It was very cold in Tokyo on Saturday. We had rain and snow most all day with very low temperature for the region. In the morning, I walked through Inokashira Park on the way back from my dentist appointment. Usually, there are many people, but I saw almost nobody.

This was the only boat on the Inokashira Pond that moment. There was a man with an umbrella sitting on a bench, reading a book.

I did find a runner - maybe he was getting ready for the Tokyo Marathon later on this month. The same lonely boat is seen on the pond beyond the bridge.


Beautiful Mountains seen from Toyama City

The City of Toyama is the capital city of the Prefecture of Toyama, surrounded by the Sea of Japan to the north and the mountains to all other directions.

In the winter time, it snows a lot and clouds cover the sky often. But the two days I visited the city recently, I got very lucky with the weather. Mountains were seen beautifully:

From the city center.
From Toyama Ohashi Bridge.
From the airport.