Bowing to the deer of Nara in a typhoon

Arriving in Nara last night, we went in search of udon,  While slurping up our noodles in a random noodle joint, I looked up at at the TV and said to HOB “look at that weather forecast—looks like there’s a typhoon over Japan.”


Oops!  There was a typhoon bearing down on us, projected to be the strongest in years.  We checked into a hostel and assessed the situation, which honestly was pretty depressing.  I’ve been planning a hike through on the Kumano Kodo pilgrimage trail for months, but now that was out of the question since the trains were going to be suspended and anyway it wouldn’t be safe.

This morning the lady at the hostel reception told me the grocery stores would probably close, so I ran to the 7-11 at the end of the block for food.


The lady from the hostel said to stay inside because it was dangerous out, so we did…..for maybe an hour or two.  Then we got bored and said “Why don’t we just see if the museum down the block is open?”


We borrowed big umbrellas from the hostel and walked to the museum where, no surprise, a sign informed us the museum was closed due to a typhoon.  But the actual surprise was the friendly deer who met us at the entrance to the closed museum.

I mean, how could we stay inside now that we’d met these deer?  After a while HOB said “Are the deer bowing?” and so I started bowing and then they bowed back.  I mean, I’m not going to let a little typhoon keep me from formal inter-species greeting.


So then I should tell you we sensibly returned to our hostel, but okay so maybe we just walked a teeny weeny bit more (and by a teeny bit I should say we went to a lookout point above Todajii Temple.)

Then it started raining even harder so we did finally return to our hostel, where we are holed up for the rest of the night, promise.



How we got to Nara: train from Kyoto.
Where we slept: Oak Hostel Nara. Price: €60 for a double. Recommended: yes.


  1. You both are lucky enough to have avoided Tokyo. Now I have evacuated hoping the flooding etc don’t affect our lives. Anyway, take care and enjoy Japan.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re right—we are feeling lucky to be away from Tokyo. How did you manage to evacuate with the trains stopped?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Walked to the nearby designated evacuation spot. Fortunately, my neighbourhood wasn’t affected by the flooding so came home early in the morning!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Being totally blind to the meaning of images the signs puzzle me….am I not allowed to drink anything…and am I a pig if I do?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have started quite a collection of bathroom signs too.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. What fun!! Well, not the storm. Sorry about that. Just eat like crazy. I hope you’re getting good food!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Did you experience any typhoons when you lived in Kyoto? We are getting some great food, but actually lots of stuff from convenience stores since we are running around so much.


      1. Yes! Although nothing that scary looking! Looks like you’re staying clear of the worst of it. Love inari sushi from convenient stores!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I hope you remembered to get some of the strange tasting toothpaste from the konbini. Also, perhaps a khimchi flavoured KitKat and some of soda called Sweat. If not you have to go out again, I’m afraid.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Where can I find kimchi Kit Kat? Must eat immediately!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m sure I bought it at a konbini. Even better than the pizza flavoured chocolate I bought in Chicago.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I remember being in Tokyo when the tail of a typhoon – or the typhoon itself, who knows, I was 23 and in a state of mild drunkenness pretty much the entire time, as one does – passed by the city. No rain whatsoever, but a very strong wind that blew the clouds from horizon to horizon in the time it took to open up a can of Sapporo. There were non-stop announcements from loudspeakers that people told us were to remind the good burghers of Tokyo not to leave plants and other things that could turn into projectiles out. The planes were grounded and the trains were 2 hours late, something that barely qualified for 50% reimboursements back in the day in Italy but that, over in Japan, was enough to cause the fine guys at JR west to consider throwing themselves out of the windows in shame (which wouldn’t have worked because the wind would’ve blown them back in).

    Horsing around aside, you guys keep safe. I read it’s caused quite a few deaths and lots of damage. And if you go back to the 7-11, do buy some of those insanely fluffy baked goods labelled “Japan bread technology”. If you do get hooked on them and develop a habit it’s not my fault.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Afraid to admit HOB already needs a 12 step program for 7-11 bread technology….

      I have an automatic email alert for train delays in Chicago and my email is now full of them (just for the one line I take to work, miind you). Why can’t we have more reliable trains in Chicago on a boring old Wednesday than Japan does during a typhoon?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Well, I don’t remember see the funny pig sign. Hopefully the storm ended while in Nara.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, the storm was over in a day but we had to change our itinerary because we could no longer find affordable rooms in any smaller towns.


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