Japan 2005 Trip Marguerite's Trip to Japan in 2005

Marguerite's Trip to Japan in 2005

Early in 2005 Marguerite was invited to speak at the Japanese Nurses Association Infection Control Conference in Tokyo on July 10. George got “first right of refusal” to accompany her on the trip, but since he was in Tokyo several years ago, he suggested Marguerite take her sister, Betsy. The trip was very generously sponsored by Johnson and Johnson International (Medical Division).

Imperial Hotel

We stayed at the Imperial Hotel for five nights – right across the street from the Imperial Palace and very centrally located. The Hotel was built originally in 1890 for international dignitaries; torn down and rebuilt in 1923 with Frank Lloyd Wright as architect; then torn down and rebuilt again in 1970. There are still many Wright touches throughout the buildings, and it is very elegant!.

Shinto Temple

Early in the trip we took a city tour that included a visit to a large Shinto temple – Betsy is standing in front of it. A bride and groom in traditional dress were having their pictures taken while we were there – very lovely.

Asakusa Kannon

Following the temple visit, we went to the Chinese Lantern Festival at another temple known as the Asakusa Kannon, built in 645. There were thousands of people and thousands of little orange lantern plants for sale. We got a bit claustrophobic but felt very safe. There were scores of Japanese and very few Americans in the crowd.

Japanese Dinner

On the night before Marguerite’s talk, she and Betsy had a traditional Japanese dinner organized by the J&J hosts. We sat on the floor but the restaurant also caters to Americans who don’t like to sit on their knees, so there is a hole under the table so your legs can dangle. We ate raw fish fixed at least a dozen ways – Marguerite loves Sushi and Sashimi and Betsy was a very good sport – tried them all with great grace!

The conference went very well – unfortunately, Marguerite forgot to take her camera!! There were about 350 nurses in attendance. All the slides were translated into Japanese. Marguerite met with the translators for a couple of hours prior to speaking, and her lecture was simultaneously translated. She and Betsy had purchased lovely small wooden hand crafted bowls in Ashville, North Carolina, as gifts for the translators and J&J hosts – they were a big hit!

Tokyo Bay Cruise

Another highlight of the trip was a “Symphony Cruise” through Tokyo Bay. The luncheon menu included delicious curried fish and white wine – the day was lovely, clear, and we saw quite a bit of Tokyo from the water – a very big city!

Tokyo Bay Cruise Ship

This was like the ship we went on for our Tokyo Bay Cruise.

Dinner and Kabuki Show

On our last night, we went on another tour – dinner and a Kabuki show. Our dinner companions included a young woman (on the right) who is the daughter of Tommy Sands, one of the “pop idols” of the 60s. She was working as a singer with Disney productions in Japan. Her mother is sitting next to her, along with another woman who was traveling alone all over the world.

The Kabuki Show

The Kabuki show was Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night – we saw about an hour of it and had headphones with English translation – all of the actors are men – traditional to Kabuki – and the theater was very old. The production was quite humorous and the costumes were very elegant!

Five days was just right for our trip to Tokyo – we were both glad to get home after a very long flight via San Francisco!

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