First is a picture of sunrise over Animate on the morning of January 1st. ...Er, well, not exactly. You see, we had glorious plans of waking up early to watch the sunrise over Animate, and our hotel room windows were conveniently facing Animate. The catch is that Animate is actually WEST of the hotel. Thus, all we could see was the sunrise being reflected in the windows of the building next to Animate.
Japanese people traditionally go to a shrine on New Year's Day. This shrine visit is called hatsumoude, the first shrine visit of the year. We had thought about going to Tokyo's famous shrine for the occasion, though it would surely be packed with other people doing the same. As it happened, we were saved the trip, because Animate decorated its front door as an Otome Road Shrine. Hatsumoude and manga shopping at the same time--what could be better?
While we were wandering around Kyoto with gnine, we stumbled across a brand new parfait shop. Now, many Japanese restaurants will serve a few kinds of parfaits, usually five or so, and they have lovely displays of plastic models of their food in a showcase at the front of the restaurant. This parfait shop had a display as well. What set this shop apart was the sheer size of the selection. (Note that this photo only has one of the shop's two showcases.) The shop itself is huge, with multiple floors. They kept the heat blasting, presumably so the patrons wouldn't get too cold while eating ice cream, though this did cause the ice cream to melt fairly rapidly. We each ordered a different type of parfait so we could get a good sample. Here is a shot of three parfaits that we ordered.
Now for a Warcraft update, which I haven't done in a while. megory and I enjoyed the Feast of Winter Veil holiday in December by running various quests, making our mounts look like reindeer, and various other activities. Our characters have reached level 62 so far. Only 8 more levels to go! Meanwhile, my guild made several attempts at the major 25-person raid instances, but we couldn't get more than about 22 people online at the same time, so we weren't able to make much progress on that front. We have, however, been running the new 10-person raid instance Zul'Aman every week, and today I was there for our second successful kill of Zul'Jin (the final boss).