Thursday, June 02, 2005

Day Two of Conferencing

Oh, boy. My brain is T.I.R.E.D. Between the conference and the grant proposal (due tomorrow), I've been overwhelmed, overworked, and exhausted. I tried to think of one more 'over' word, but I couldn't think of anything.

I'm posting my non-food pictures from my last trip to Japan today, because I am not feeling very passionate about food right now... The Conference Food has taken a toll on me after four meals... I still have a horrifying ten meals to go...

The food here has been largely disappointing. Every meal is buffet-style with food soaked in their sauces for too long, inevitably escaping that temperature when food is really good. I realize they are trying hard to please us. I really do. The dining servies provide a wonderful variety with at least three meat selections per meal. The problem is that none of those selections are particularly healthful and their vegetarian selection is...salad. And even then, the salad greens are shiny with oil, over-greased beyond my range of acceptably healthful or tasty. Sigh.

To compensate for my dissatisfaction with the meals here, I went for a run today. I know, this sounds a little bit wierd, but I often eat or exercise. For example, the choice for an evening activity is usually between going out to dinner or going to the gym. I'm not exactly sure what the reasoning behind my thinking is, but it works. If I can't find anything good to eat, I up the exercise quota and it keeps me happy. Maybe this trip will help me lose some of the weight I gained back last month while I was frantically working on my grant proposal.

These pictures are from a tea house in the gardens next to the Hikone Castle in Japan. Hikone Castle's claim to fame is that the original architecture is preserved in the Tenshukaku (which is what we all think of when we hear 'castle') as you see below. The Tenshukaku is more like a fortress than anything and the living quarters are in a separate section within the grounds.

We had a lovely break at the tea shop with matcha green tea and a sweet treat, looking out the terrace by the pond. The red umbrella signals the presence of a rest stop, and on a glorious Spring day, it was truly a beautiful sight. A break like that is what I need right now...


Clea said...

These pictures are really beautiful! Sugoi!

Alice said...

Thank you so much, Claire! It's easier when the weather is so gorgeous...