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.