September 19th, 2007 – by: nausicaa
Last week I finally went to meet my academic adiser, Abe sensei, because there were some papers (in portuguese) to be signed and sent back to Universidade do Minho. She's very nice and probably I won her over when stating my deep interest in Japanese History and Literature (wich is very honest). Anyway, she probably was well impressed, for she invited me for the Japanese advanced class field trips, even though I'm not registered for those. And the first trip was to this Shinto shrine nearby, it took us 20 minutes by bus to get there. The shrine grounds are very beautifull, and she was explaining the history and traditions of Shinto, as well as the various Kami worshiped there. The main purpose of the shrine is for women to pray for children and safe births, though there were also a mountain kami or a construction kami.
Suddenly, this elder man showed up with his dog, later we found it was caled Taro. Actually the man was the main priest there, and, to my surprise, he belongs to the Mononobe family. To all of those who don't know much about History of Japan, I'll just say the Mononobe were a very powerfull clan and their origins can be traced as far as the Yamato period (around 7th century). For an History geek such as myself, that was a treat indeed. And he as so friendly he gave us all O-mikuji
for free. After seeing the shrine we took the bus again and went to visit a Nô
theatre, we didn't get in, but we could see most of it from the outside. Man, am I ever glad to have visited the avcademic adviser, this trip was great and there are more to come. Professor Ashmore, from the Manga/Anime class promised to take us to the Manga Museum in Sendai
, and, if we're really lucky, we might even go to Tokyo
and visit the Ghibli and Bandai museums. By the way, Helen MacCarthy (co-writer of the Anime Encyclopedia) is coming to AIU to give us a lecture. Life is good :-)