Ruth: We diligently recite the Heart Sutra at every temple. Our guide book provides the Sutra in phonetic Japanese, but I think I stand a better chance of enlightenment if I at least know what I am saying. Knowing, does not, however, mean understanding. After 11 tries it’s still not clear.
Ritual is everywhere on Shikoku, from the temple procedures to life in the ryokans (Japanese style inn). We are learning new rituals every day. I should have packed half the clothes I brought, because each day after our bath we are given kimono robes to lounge in through dinner and into the evening. That nice second outfit I brought stays packed in my bag.