Kyoto rain

We'd given up on seeing this 1000-year parade as Hazel doesn't like
staying still for long, but we came across it at the end of our walk

It was a tad wet.

More posts to come after our return along with much advice. iPhones
have been fantastic but composition on a tiny phone when there's a
baby needing wrangling is hard.

In Hiroshima at the moment; it's a profoundly moving place. Today,
though, is a Hazel day. Not much travel and lots more playtime.

Bamboo and crowds

We've been all over Kyoto and around in the last few days. West to
Arashiyama and south to Nara, to bamboo forests and parks without
grass, to stunning gardens with few visitors and to so-so gardens with
hordes of people and deer poo.

Highlights? Hazel has been feted by so many people so far… given
gifts, food, had her photo taken. A lovely cafe owner gave her a
squeaky octopus. Some great temples and gardens, the best ones off the
main tourist routes.

What can we recommend if travelling with a baby? Don't bring a pram;
too many steps. Don't try to do too much. Relax about bedtimes but be
ready for crazed squawking. Don't underestimate how far distances can

Eep. Enough for one post. Email is good here but not voip so
apologies; no phone calls at the moment.

So we got here

A 2-3 hour delay is not the best way to start a 9 hour flight, but a
father-in-law in hospital was visited and good vibes ensued all round.

Flights with babies are long. Take lots of toys, books and food and
take turns with the wrangling. Hazel wandered up and down the aisles
making herself cute and only cried during the descent.

We're at the Cross Hotel in the heart of Osaka, a luxury oasis we'd
heartily recommend, in a corner room with fab bath, one of those fancy
toilet seats you've heard about and many comfy trimmings.

Outside it looks like this at night, with local goths and fashionistas
strolling the alleys. Huge, well lit, safe, overwhelming. All yay.