Having lived in India where cows were considered sacred and often freely roamed the streets, I found the statues of the ox to be rather curious. According to legend, the ox carrying the coffin of revered scholar Michizane stopped at this spot and refused to budge. Therefore, the funeral procession halted here and Michizane was buried at this site. The shrine was then built to venerate this scholar. I love how the horns of the ox are highly polished. Many people stopped to have their photo taken with the resting creature with its red and white braid.
Note also in the photo above the tree with its rather "fuzzy" branches.