From luxurity to a camp site


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1. CPH 12.08.13

2. Narita - Tone 13.08.13

3. Tone 14.08.13

4. Tone 15.08.13

5. Tone - Oarai 16.08.13

6. Oarai - Tomakomai 17.08.13

7. Tomakomai - Iwamizawa 18.08.13

8. Iwamizawa - Azahikawa 19.08.13

9. Azahikawa - Kamikawa 20.08.13

10.Kamikawa - Nukabira Onsen 21.08.13

11.Nukabira Onsen - Tokachigawa 22.08.13

12.Tokachigawa - Kushiro 23.08.13

13.Kushiro - Shibesha 24.08.13

14.Shibesha - Lake Kussharo 25.08.13

15.Lake Kussharo - Lake Akan 26.08.13

16.Lake Akan - Abashiri 27.08.13

17.Abashiri 28.08.13

18.Abashiri - Sapporo (tog) 29.08.13

19.Sapporo - Otaru 30.08.13

20.Otaru - Kamoenai 31.08.13

21.Kamoenai - Makkari 01.09.13

22.Makkari - Yakumo 02.09.13

23.Yakumo - Hakodate 03.09.13

24.Hakodate - Aomori 04.09.13

25.Aomori - Lake Towada 05.09.13

26.Lake Towada - Lake Tazawa 06.09.13

27.Lake Tazawa - Hanamaki 07.09.13

28.Hanamaki - Tsukidate 08.09.13

29.Tsukidate - Sendai 09.09.13

30.Sendai - Tone 10.09.13

31.Tone 11.09.13

32.Tone 12.09.13

33.Tone - Kurihama 13.09.13

34.Kurihama - Hakone 14.09.13

35.Hakone - Gotemba 15.09.13

36.Gotemba 16.09.13

37.Gotemba - Fujinomiya 17.09.13

38.Fujinomiya - Shizuoka (Kyoto) 18.09.13

39.Kyoto 19.09.13

40.Kyoto 20.09.13

41.Kyoto 21.09.13

42.Kyoto - Nara 22.09.13

43.Nara - Wakayama 23.09.13

44.Wakayama - Higashikagawa 24.09.13

45.Higashikagawa - Takamatsu 25.09.13

46.Takamatsu - Iya Valley 26.09.13

47.Iya Valley 27.09.13

48.Iya Valley - Imabari 28.09.13

49.Imabari - Onomichi 29.09.13

50.Onomichi - Hiroshima 30.09.13

51.Hiroshima 01.10.13

52.Hiroshima - Takayama (tog) 02.10.13

53.Takayama 03.10.13

54.Takayama - Matsumoto 04.10.13

55.Matsumoto - Hakuba 05.10.13

56.Hakuba - Nagano 06.10.13

57.Nagano - Tone 07.10.13

58.Tone 08.10.13

59.Tone - Narita 09.10.13

60. Narita - CPH 10.10.13

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Letter 11

 

Thursday 22.08.13      81,08 km

 

I sit with a plan of this spa "town". I can see my hotel and its name, but the only thing with latin letters is WC. But I do see it starts with the character for "middle", which I've now learned is "waka" in japanese. So it has to stay there, something starting with waka....


It's 6am and I'm busy because I must utilize their wi-fi, which surprised me a lot, but that's an additional thing you get for your money. My boiler is bobbling, I going to have a cup of green tea.


I was welcomed by the owners wife and a more english speaking young man, who showed to come from Hong Kong, so he's not totally fit with the japanese language. I insisted taking off my shoes even they claimed it wasn't nescesary in the lobby. One knows a thing or two about japanese habits...? When I asked to see the room I was taken on a big tour. They must also have european style rooms but mine is japanese style. When you're taken round in 3 floors and speak at the same time it can
be difficult to keep orientation, but I did later manage to find the bath. The toilet is easy, it's just 5 m's down the korridor. You don't have separate shower and toilet in japanese style hotels, but there's a "more beautiful" toilet downstairs. And then there's the bath. First you get into a room, where there's a lot of baskets, and I assume you put your kimono there. I don't know what to do with the towel, but you have to take it with you into the main bathing part, but there are no hooks to put it on. But when I come to think about there isn't the little thing to put on the hook. So you probably just lay it. But where?
 

                  My room before the bed was made

 

The main bathing is a big room with showers and mirrors in the usual low height on two walls. Vincent,  my new friend from Hong Kong, says you sit on low stools. The biggest part of the room is a big pool filled with hot water from their own hot spring. It was around 8 x 5 m. First you wash at the shower and then you enter the pool. It's a long time since I've been bathing like this. Unfortunately I didn't have much time, as I'd ordered dinner at 6.30pm. Otherwise I might also have fallen asleep. You could choose between 6, 6.30 or 7pm. There's a bathing area for men and for women and at 9.30pm you switch them. When you switch back I don't remember.
 

At the meal a girl appeared that spoke quite a bit of english, so I could ask, how things were supposed to be done. First I had to choose a soft drink and she'd made a note with all the possibilities in english. I chose a Hawthorn, that wasn't strong but definitely with alkohol. And then I was free to taste the specialities. Different small vegetable dishes, a fish, some dull slices of pig, cut in a way I never saw it before. I had to fry them myself. The fish had laid in acid or something, so long that you could eat it all. But not the eyes, she said. I didn't tell I know someone that eats the eyes as well, namely Nori. Together with the pork you also fried some mushrooms and some vegetables. There was a delicious sauce to dip it in. Their sauces are always very thin and you just dip in it before putting it in your mouth. More dishes came, among which was one entirely made of milk and eggs
but with some black grains of rice in. Another meat dish was deer. And of course rice. If the miso soup only came because I asked about it, I don't know. There was also another vegetable soup and in the end the desert: yougurt mousse with a red stripe of some fruit paste.


              Parts of the dinner - the stove is not lit yet

All in all an orgy of different tastes. Nothing that tasted bad, only maybe strange. I had a beer, I had to pay for and for the rest tea. A nice experience. The girl was from Tokyo and was studying economi and was here in her holiday. It must be very seasonable here. Like in Bornholm. Even they also might have customers in the skiing season. There's skiing rather close.
Now it's past 7am. I have to prepare for the breakfast, it's from 7.30am.

 

6 tunnels in a row to get away from Nukabiro Onsen. The longest just about 500 m, but badly lighted. The last two with a bicycle lane. But here's not much traffic. I get through with no problems. It was 21 degr. outside my window. The wheather looks nice. You never know what happens to the clouds here in the mountains- Got a mail from Nori. The family worried about me, there should have been or should come heavy rain on Hokkaido. Yes I bet. The rain was hammering down all evening.
 

Then comes the 7. tunnel, but still with bicycle lane. Have to put the fleece on, the road declines along a river and the sun has disappeared. After having climbed two green hills I end up the the flat  land. There's agriculture here and the road is long with no end. I do a fair speed from time to time the wind is against me. It is as if the wind comes and goes.
 

Am on my way to Obihiro Sta hoping to achive some information on Hagomoro Falls which is marked in my map. I've long wanted to stop to eat but haven't found a suitable place, so when a Road Station is announced 2 km ahead, it's like having thrown a life line. The first 54 km have passed. Go to ask for Hagoromo Falls. They are helpfull as usual. Nelles Map has a mistake here. It appears that the falls are those I saw yesterday. It's the first time I've encountered such a big mistake.
But I'm glad I did see them!
 

In the station is a tourist info and soon an english speaking is called for. It's now confirmed but Nelles are mistaken. And there should be a camp site at Tagachigawa Onsen. And it should rain tomorrow afternoon at about 3pm.
 

When I reach Tagachigawa I'm not shure. It's not much of a town and the camp site wasn't in my direction. But I find a big overview of the town and there - up in the corner - is the sign of a tent. It shouldn't be hard, after the turning I have to turn right. But there are different roads to take. In the first I meet some girls, who a so kind to say: hello, so they speak apparently some english. This is a kind of hotel but the owner comes and claims the camp site is just next door. I go through a small path and get into a complicated area of roads and tracks of newly laid asphalt. Some spots there are toiletbuildings and washing facilities. I also get into an area with some  tents, but no people. But you can't just put up your tent, can you?
 

I end up going somewhere called Ecology Center. A man appears on a lawn mover. He points but changes his mind. I just have to follow him and then it goes fast on small tracks and bigger roads. It reminds me about Beijing where I had to pay a rickshaw driver to go in front of me to my hostel. But this one I don't have to pay. It costs 1500 Y and there isn't even a shower! Well. He asks when I want to check out but gives up. I can just leave. After all I have paid already. He explains where it is, but I know already, there where the tents were placed.


               As if I couldn't find a toilet when I saw one

Later he comes in a small car to show me the toilet....? I use the opportunity to ask for el.power and he end up opening a small box at the washingarea where there's an outlet. It's noy entirely by the book I think.
 

          Ready to pack the bike in the morning - almost

Then I'm not asking for more but goes back to town to shop in Seicemart (a chain).


 

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