Daily Life 8: Animals Speak Japanese?

We went to the Kyoto Zoo with our friend Atsuhiro-san, his wife Saori-san, and two sons! While the Kyoto Zoo is just a humble zoo, it was a lot of fun because we went with our friends, learned tons of animal names in japanese, and of course, we got to see some cool animals!
Disclaimer: Yes, it's crazy that Zoo's have animals living in captivity and it's totally morally, ethically, economically, politically, regionally, dangerously, and nautically wrong. Let's avoid debates, and just enjoy the pictures and adventure we had with our friends.

I'll try to let the pictures do most of the speaking

The morning started like any other. We got up late, wolfed down a meager breakfast while figuring out which clothes were clean, and left. Quite proud of ourselves for getting out of the house so fast, we were off on a good start. We had to bike for about 30min to our arranged meeting place (this was before my bike accident). The morning was super freezing and we had to move fast to keep on schedule. We biked east to the river, south along the river, then east again to our meeting place.Then we walked to the Zoo.

The meeting place was at a train station. Meet Atsuhiro-san, Saori-san, Yoshiharu-kun, and Saneyuki-kun.
Picture taken later that day in front of an Elephant!
Kailey and I quickly switched our brains into "Japanese-mode" and then we all walked 10 minutes to the Zoo.

And here starts the photo's! I posted them in the order we walked around. Try to explore everything about the photo's. Remember, this isn't just any ordinary zoo....it's a zoo in Kyoto! Are people's reactions the same in Japanese culture? When we see a cute animal do both cultures react the same? How does a parent act when their child is misbehaving? How do parents act when their kids are around? Is everything strict? relaxed? stressful?
Our friends and hosts Atsuhiro-san's family is super fun and relaxed; so, we had a good time.

Mountain Cat
See explanation: left
This photo deserves an explanation. This animal is called a "Mountain Cat" in Japanese, and so we were thinking it would be something like a cougar or mountain lion when we first read it on the zoo brochure. Nope. It's just an ordinary cat.... the sign says "What do you mean an ordinary cat!" and then describes how this cat is different because it has a shorter tail and smaller ears.

Looking at the Mountain Cat

There's a lion behind us

I said the lion was just chillin but then had to launch into an explanation about the meaning of this idiom. (in Japanese)


Tiger kept on coming up to the kids near the fence when they stood for a picture there
I got there just in the nick of time to catch the falling tree with my finger.
in front.

Afterwards we accidentally returned home with the monkey instead..

In Yoshiharu's hand, they love playing with our electronic dictionary

Going Inside

Koopa Troopa's !!

Playing / hiding from Kailey

Drawing the animals onto the electronic dictionary
It was dark in there, almost pitch-black

back outside...
"Hey look! an anteater!"...
...Anteater loses to electronic dictionary...


Where'd he go?

Lunch Time


Petting Zoo and rain

They had a place to hold rabbits and guinea pigs for the kids too




Eating time, making sure nothing is left
 This guy is so huge!

Back outside to walk towards the exit!

My favourite, the Red Panda - thanks Suzi for the name!

We all warmed ourselves up a little and then we were off home!

Until next time!



Completely Different Post: Japanese Restaurants display what?!

Ben and Kailey lived in Japan not too long ago and also visit Kyoto every year.

Ben is developing a Japanese Practice site. It's current main functions are:
1. a Flash Card system that features a leveling system where you must answer correctly and "level up"to gain new cards, receive money and buy new decks - anime decks included!
2. Fill in the Blank system where you can choose to focus on particle practice or verb practice etc.
Japanese Practice Blog is here. Check out the Japanese Practice site here

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing your story of the animals and zoo. We enjoyed your visit to the zoo. It's nice to see the kids having so much fun. Looking fwd to seeing you in a month. Happy Valentine's Day! I hope you got your bike fixed Ben.
    Ken's sister Betty is coming out of the hospital tomorrow after having a broken hip from a fall in her apartment. Your Mother and Father, Kailey, were very helpful along with John and Bonnie to help get Betty's apartment cleared out so she can return with her walker and get around ok. The weather continues cool and rainy,just like Japan, I guess.
    All my love,
    Grandma xoxo


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