Had a dream ride to Aomori – a port city and the departure point for a ferry to Hokkaido. Cruised in a little before midday , was only a 90 km or so ride , and was able to find a camping shop , ” Monte Bell ” and get some fuel and polypropylene longs and top for the cooler country ahead. Then cycled to the centre of town and had a lovely scrub and clean up at a nice Onsen. Time was still way early so I decided to go and check the ticket office for the ferry. Got very lucky as they let me board the 2.30 pm ferry – It was touch and go and I was the very last vehicle to board.
Been a roller coaster ride – overall having a ball. The connectivity here s great so Barb and I have been able to FaceTime almost daily . She confirms that while I am no more beautiful ( left that run too late ) I appear leaner but not meaner 😊
Japan is the land of the rising sun and short holiday
Seems the work culture in Japan makes it almost impossible to get a holiday longer than a week and the guilt in associated with anything longer makes it tough on any free spirited Japanese. A few break free – but only a few . It is a group or team oriented culture and unwritten rules are pretty tough.
The roads are pretty good , many smooth sealed roads that give a great feel as you cruise along . Wish we had them at home. Drivers are courteous and considerate to cyclists and I think it stems from the reality that so many Japanese own and ride bikes themselves
Food is amazing . These pics from a supermarket illustrate the point that they are the masters of convenience foods – complete nutritious meals that only require zapping . Something for all tastes – plenty of shops ( Kombinis ) enroute making starvation a remote possibility
Have not seen a westerner since Osaka , so as a tourist in rural Japan , don’t expect a lot of English conversation . Not sure that Japan needs , wants or particularly focuses on foreign tourists. As a closed society one still gets a hint that they probable do not really need us 😊 I am the only gaijin on the ferry .
But if you love cycle touring , Japan needs to be on your list .