Solbit Takes Her First Train in Japan

Dear Nicalai,

Today, Solbit took a train with us. Her first train ride.   The train took us from Tokyo to Kyoto.  We told Solbit that we’ll be in Kyoto for more than a week.

Solbit said that she’ll miss Tokyo and that she didn’t know if she would like Kyoto.  She had gotten used to how big Tokyo is. Nicalai, did you know that Tokyo is the capital city of Japan today?  Tokyo is big, too. Guess how many people live here.  Give up?  OK. Almost 13 million!  Compare that to where you live, Nicalai, about 1 million. So Tokyo is 13 times bigger than where you live.

We told Solbit that she would probably like Kyoto, because it is smaller than Tokyo. Also, Kyoto is an old and historic Japanese city.


Tokyo is a big capital city.

We explained to Solbit that Kyoto was once the capital city of imperial Japan, for one thousand years!  That’s 1,000 years.  Isn’t that amazing?  So, it is an old city.  Guess how many people live here? 1.5 million.  It’s only a little bigger than where you live.


Kyoto was a capital city of imperial Japan for 1000 years. It’s smaller than Tokyo.

We got here on a high speed and very comfortable train.  Nona had to buy our train tickets from a vending machine.


Train tickets are purchased at a vending machine.

Our ticket said that we would ride in Train Car #12.  So, we had to find that car.  We worried that we might not be able to find it.  Solbit was no help; she doesn’t know her numbers yet.  We had no trouble finding where to get on the train.  This great big sign told us, in Japanese and English, where Car #12 would stop.


Bigs Signs Tell Us Where to Go

We sat in these seats all the way, and, every once in a while, a lady came by with this cart to sell cold drinks, hot tea, and snacks to us passengers.  We didn’t buy anything, because we brought snacks and drinks with us.


Snack cart in train car

Solbit said that she loved looking out the train window. We did too.  We saw towns, farms, rivers, hills, and, of course, people.

She said she wants to go on a train ride again.  So, that’s the story about our train ride in Japan.  When we arrived in Kyoto, we took a taxi to our Airbnb.  Solbit says hi, and she’s pooped. She’s going to take a nap. We’ll wake her to go out with us for supper.


Nona & Papa

September 2013

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