It was May 25, we visited Flower Festa Memorial Park at Kani city, as we heard it was about the best time for the rose garden there. As we expected, roses were really fascinatingly beautiful, very much different from when we visited a few years ago.
2013 roses in full bloom
Right inside EAST Gate, inside the conservatory named Flower-topia, there was an exhibition of dwarf azaleas. We ware able to see many unique azaleas we have never seen, before.
珍しそう New to me.
The sign "Matcha, 500yen/cup" caught our eyes after we walked rose garden for a while. -Match is green powdered tea - Responding this, we found ourselves a little tired without noticing, and decided to visit the matcha house though we have never heard of the facility.
No sooner than we started to doubt we might took a wrong path after we walked switch back downhill and turned a corner, a Japanese gate came into our view. There was a sign of "Oribean, teahouse". Since we expected something like a makeshift tent with benches covered with red rug, this was a delightful surprise.
渋い門をくぐると、大きな池の前に中々の和風の庭園と数寄屋造りの建物、その向こうに大衆向け ^^; (靴のまま、椅子に座って頂ける)茶室がある。立礼席と言うらしい。数寄屋造りの建物では、陶芸展が催されているらしい。後で寄ることにして、まず抹茶と和菓子を頂きに奥へ。満員だったが5分もすると席が頂けた。
Going through the low-keyed gate, there was a traditional Japanese tea ceremony style house with also traditional Japanese garden in front of a large pond. Beyond these, we could see a casual teahouse for general public where we can enjoy tea sitting on the bench without taking off our shoes. In the tea ceremony style house, it appeared there was a pottery art exhibit. We decided to visit that later, and went into the casual teahouse to enjoy tea and Japanese cake. Although it was fully populated, we were able to sit down in several minutes.
It was cool inside, and the tea and cake tastes wonderful. We heard the beautiful cups and dishes used here were works of local artists.
Finishing our tea, we went to the exhibit. It was a local Kani Pottery Art Association Exhibition. The house itself is designed by famous designer, related to Shisendo in Kyoto, etc. etc. The design of the house adopted unique styles called "Oribe's favorite" that is originally introduced by a local warrior Oribe Furuta who was became the "Top tea master" after Rikyu Sen passed away.
Taking off shoes and entering the house, numerous pottery art were displayed in the corners of rooms and the sides of corridors. There was a white platform under each pottery that has abstract patterns painted in pale Chinese ink. As it was hard for me to crouch down to see all the art, I skipped some. Shoot, age! After we appreciated the ones in the main room, I took pictures of two displayed on the beautiful deck outside of the room that were harmonized with the background garden.
The carving of the boards looks unconventional.
There was anothe nice one of mat black with straight outlines, but I was afraid the detail won't be captured by a photo, and did not took a picture. Each pottery and the base platform are artistically blended into one. We heard there is a traditional and formal tea room in this building, but it looks not easy to use the room by us.
After, I googled "Oribean" and found this layout drawing at the Gifu National College of Technology web site. Thanks. http://www.gifu-nct.ac.jp/archi/nagao/gam/data/hanacha.html The left is the gate, and the right is the casual teahouse, the down-left is the main room and the down-right is the formal tearoom. According to this illustration, the casual tea house is connected to the traditional house.
Layout of Oribean
We went outside, and listened to a story about the house and the association from a gentleman of the association. Finally, we re-started watching roses in the main rose garden. There were a lot, and we are not experts or any, so we just looked around saying "Beautiful!"
Various layouts are adopted.
Recently I like a single flower. Looks clean and still.
These decorated double is not bad, but looks heavy.
A bee is heading to the ripen one.
Weather was just right, and we walked well.