So today was a more relaxed day. The beds that we have in our room here at the ryokan are kind of uncomfortable, as they are just mats on the floor. I had trouble staying asleep, so I woke up at 4:55am.
I slept in the yukata they gave us because they are just so comfortable! I'm not sure why it is so comfy, but it just is.
Taking a bath at the public bath was a lot easier once I learned what it was I was supposed to do! It was also easier when there were no other people there. It seems like such a foreign thing, to bathe with strangers, but here it is just expected. The hot springs are really nice too. They have such a good effect on the skin! They have made my hair and my skin so soft!!!!! I believe that the little booklet that came with the room said that the hot spring baths (one outside and one inside) had alkaline and calcium sulfate, respectively. The stones they were made of were also "healing" stones used by the chinese. I am really getting used to bathing this way. It is also way more environmentally friendly than how we do it at home in the USA. First you rinse off with the tub water, then you get into the tub of your choice. The hot water just feels so good. I never thought it would feel better than a hot tub, but its like 1,000,000 times better! After a good soak in the water, you go over to the shower head (which is a separate part). You lather up and get your hair all washed. Once you rinse off with the shower head, you then get back into the tub until you are ready to get out and get dressed.
|The shower part|
|The tub part (hot spring)|
Although the photos above are not the public bath, the principal is the same (its our private bath).
After our baths we had breakfast, which was quite interesting.
|Mackerel (?), soft boiled egg, Natto, and other things of which I have no clue|
After having some tea, we went on a bus to an area of Hakone with a lot of cute shops. The weather today was rainy, so there are not very many photos, although the mountains looked beautiful with the low clouds. I bought a little music box (I love those little things) made from this wood that is a specialty in Hakone. When I bought it, the lady handed me a little pastry filled with creme called Yunotamago. It was very yummy (we ended up buying a whole pack later on). We had lunch at a little food court, in which I had ramen. It was a cute little place. The little town we were in had so many cute little shops. We also saw a machine that made these little cakes filled with white bean paste and were stamped with the hot spring symbol.
|The little machine that made the hot spring cakes|
|My little music box|
|The inside of the yunotamago|
|The yunotamago wrapped|
Currently we are waiting for dinner at 6pm. This is all I will write for now!
Here is the link to my photos: