The rain ceaselessly continued into my first night in Kyoto. Not even the rain cover for my camera would be enough to keep it dry. I wandered under the covered markets of Nashiki and Teramachi trying to keep dry, but my feet drew me towards Gion. After stopping in a quaint shop to purchase a small umbrella, I slogged through the puddles and crowds to Hanami-kōji, the main drag of the geisha district. I managed to find a small awning that kept me at least partially out of the downpour. Still, despite the treacherous conditions, every so often the luminous white form of a maiko, an apprentice geisha, would surreally float by me. Simply holding a paper parasol above her head, and moving as smoothly and gracefully as if nothing whatsoever was out out of the ordinary.