Cycling the Length of Japan: Day 4, August 19, 2013

Today was a good cycling-karma day.  One small cloud burst itself open just as I was riding past a large flower garden and lavender park (there’s a lot of them around) so I stopped and had some green tea ice cream until the clouds passed.  Then, just minutes after I checked into my hotel (Minshuku, actually) the rain came down in sheets.  If I arrived 10 minutes later I would have been drenched.

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The distance was short today so I had plenty of time to stop as I was only going from Asahikawa to Furano.  Furano is a ski town that sits at the base of the highest mountain range in Hokkaido. While the peaks aren’t very high, this town gets over 22 feet of snow a year.  August is my time to be here.


The first stop was at a very tiny coffee house where that woman took at least 10 minutes to brew my coffee in an individual drip percolator.  It was very good, but yeow, was it strong.



My mother (Esther) and I share the same birthday, so each year on August 16 I find a Catholic church, light a candle, and take some time to remember her.  She was a great lady (I can still hear her say, “Oh…Bobby”).  However, Catholic churches are in short supply on this island, so I’ve been trying to find a shrine or temple to light a candle or some incense.  Well, that didn’t happen on the 16th, but today I noticed a small shrine with what looked like headstones nearby (but not graves) so I stopped.  The shrine was a tiny building about 100sf with a bunch of prayer papers on the wall, so I paid my homage to Esther.

A very precisely laid out field.

A very precisely laid out field.

Oh, for those of you who’ve never been to Japan, a Minshuku is sort of a budget Japanese B&B… actually,maybe a bit below that.  This one I’m in tonight is certainly heavy on the “budget”.  I wanted to try a variety of accommodations; however, I will NOT be going below this into any Youth Hostels.   Minshuku is my limit.

Something tells me they are either over selling a bit, or the message got lost in translation.

Something tells me they are either over selling a bit, or the message got lost in translation.

~ by Robert on August 19, 2013.

6 Responses to “Cycling the Length of Japan: Day 4, August 19, 2013”

  1. wonderful posts!


  2. Beautiful, Bob. I’m enjoying this so much. Thanks.


  3. Robert: Excellent shots in today’s post. And, while it could make some surreal images – let’s hope the Sakuajima volcano quiets a bit before the final leg of your trip!


  4. What a jolly good adventure. By the way I already put a flat in your bike. These NM streets are prickly bunch……..Enjoy realizing your dreams with the power to live all around in a happy space.


  5. Can’t think of a better rest day stop than “Sapporo” …cheers!


  6. I would loved to have tried that coffee! I love your post about grandma too. You are such an amazing and interesting man and introspective as well. Very inspiring Uncle Bobby. I love you


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