So we arrive in Kyoto last night, and wisely decided to get dinner at a really cool restaurant that was super-hard to find. It is hard to find partially because smaller streets don’t have any names. So when you get to this level of searching you’re really using landmarks as much as anything. Like, “Turn right when you see a house with yellow curtains. If you see a guy on a red bike you’ve gone too far.”
This suits me because its how I navigate. When I was a kid I rode my bicycle everywhere, but never realized I wasn’t reading street signs when one day, after riding the same route for ten years, I looked around and didn’t recognize anything. I was lost. I had to backtrack and circle for quite a while before I figured out where I was. How did I get lost in a county I rode through thousands of times? A guy painted his house. When the color of the house changed, I didn’t get my cue to turn and, well, just kept riding, looking for a yellow house, till I hit the foothills of the rocky mountains and realized there was a problem.