Just for a quick overview of the previous two weeks, here’s how they look in quantitative form.
Miles cycled: 566
Crashes sustained: 3
Crashes as a result of cars: 0
Tunnels survived: 32+
Times I swore at Hermes: 20
Times I covered Hermes with compliments: 15 (I have some sweet talk to do)
Rainy days on the bike: 4
Flats: 0, so far
Audiobooks completed: 4
Songs made up out loud while biking: 2 hours total
Bowls of ramen since Sapporo: 1, maybe
New Japanese foods tried: lots, but discernably 5
Times “I never need to eat again” uttered: 8
Times I ate again within two hours: 5
Bouts of sickness: 1 (I blame squid that too late I discovered was 2 weeks past expiration)
Caloriemate energy bars: 8
Home-cooked meals: 17 (I’m again stunned by this generosity)
Cups of tea: Many
Times said, “Birthday ______!” as reason to eat: 5
Family dinner at Shiratori farm.
Takoyaki- battered octopus poppers- with the Suzuki family.
Chestnut ice cream in Obuse, just north of Nagano, famous for its chestnut production.
Crazy, detailed dreams: 15+
Tatami style floor mats: 4
Sleeping in public places: 2
Times photographed sleeping in public place: 1
Times woken up to be asked to sleep elsewhere: 1
Times directions ignored without further ado: 1
Nights of restless sleep: 3
Nights of blissful rest: 11
Dawn at Shiratori farm.
Snow monkeys in Monkey Park, near Nagano, grooming and hanging out.
Monkeys seen: 40 at a time
Museums/parks visited: 3
Onsen visited: 2
Travel buddies found: 1
Naoto, a travelling buddy discovered in Akita, and who was good company for a few days, sleeping under the stars, talking about human truths, and finding awesome common ground. See you in Nara!
Birthday desserts: 3
Persimmons eaten: 6
Types of vegetables harvested: 3
Children adored: 4
Buckets of phytoplankton investigated: 1
Trains taken: 5 (4 of which to get to local sites, one to avoid a typhoon)
Laundry loads: 3
Revelations and insights: Too many to count, or even keep track of
Times said, “Watashi wa baga gaijin des” (I am a stupid, silly foreigner): Dozens
Success rate of laughter at above statement: 95%
Ferries taken: 3
Time spent feeling unbelievably blessed and grateful: Hundreds of hours
New nicknames developed: 1
Ferry crewmate en route to Sado.
- My love for boats extends with every ride.
Squid fishing boats along the coast of western Honshu.
The signature red of Japan’s shrines, temples, castles, and gates, marking sacred territory.
Hopefully this gives some summary of the last two weeks. I apologize for cramming it all in, but this is the sad reality of having such long absences from internet.
Until the next post,
Taking in the Sea of Japan.