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Thoughts of a Flowertot…Compact Galleries – Japan

We’ve been in Aus for 3 weeks now and we love it although we’re slightly disturbed by the cost of everything.  We survived Darwin on a diet of tuna butties and crisp butties with the occasional piece of fruit. We’ve just finished a fantastic West coast road trip with Rob & Gilly and we’re at the end of a visit to the red centre to stare at a big lump of rock. With Internet access being mostly chargeable & sparsely available on the road it’s likely that our blog updates may become even more sporadic so here’s a few more piccies from the compact camera to keep you going. In terms of compact camera archive crawling we’re up to Japan now and it seems like a distant memory already.

Sakurajima, Kumamoto, Fukuoka, Kyoto & Kobe

We landed in Fukuoka mid December and made the most of our Shinkansen rail passes.  They were a bit pricey but well worth the experience.  Never delayed, super spacious, always clean. Check out the guys with hard hats and clip boards – thorough inspections are made throughout the train and below platform level in super speed time.

The rail pass meant that we could hop onto the next available bullet train and head down to Kagoshima on the southern tip of Kyushu in just a couple of hours. By late afternoon we were relaxing in the Furusato Onsen, an ocean side fresh water bath heated by the Sakurajima volcano. Thankfully for us this Onsen provides Yukata – giant dressing gown type outfits – in most Onsen you would bathe naked eekk.  Still, they are white but once your underwater it doesn’t really matter! We spent a dreamy few hours soaking up the heat and watching the sunset. Mmmmmm!

That was possibly the most chilled aspect of Japan as we had a lot of ground to cover.  The earlier galleries show you Kumamoto, Kyoto & Sakurajima in more detail but the compact camera captured little snippets like green tea ice cream, funky poochies in their pram, samurai swords for sale, a Christmas light & sound instillation powered by your bum & our staple food source in Japan the 7-11 bento box!

Fuji

I really enjoyed the slow pace of Fuji. I rarely read guestbooks but in Fuji, there’s not really that much to do except stare at a gargantuan volcano. This guestbook had some bizarre entries that made me chuckle. To quote from the great Kensei warrior Miyamoto Musashi  (who actually died in the 1600’s ?) …‘ In my dreams,  god spoke to me, he said ‘ go to this hotel where you can eat noodles on the floor and call the cleaner your bitch. So here I am and still no hookers but hey! Its Mount Fuji right! So I decided instead to climb that mountain to talk to my dead wife so that she could tell me where she hid the washing powder. She said up your ass then she bought me a drink to a close by coffee shop and introduced me to a young Hendrix. I have to admit – it could have been better.’

There were also a couple of comical tales from a Swedish guest. You’ll have to read his scribbling to understand but I had wondered about the possibility of head injuries in such a mutually respectful country.  Thankfully I had avoided using the dubious ‘complimentary soap’ in the ever efficient Japanese designed toilets which house an integrated sink within the cistern for washing your paws as it refills.

Tokyo

A couple of galleries here. Gallery 1 shows a snippet of Tokyo the land of Christmas poochies, warbling miniature ladies, toxic chilli, sushi trains and our moment of weakness where we went for an Indian curry buffet. (despite travelling half the globe curry remains our favourite grub!) Also, overcrowded Harajuko madness and space dog & not forgetting Paul’s moment of Streetfighter triumph against a local. You can see the glance around to see who he’d defeated!

Gallery 2 is disgracefully late in being uploaded. Liam & Craig, fellow travellers who we met in Miyajima invited us out on their ‘leaving (Japan) do’ where we had an awesome night out with many friends they have made along their journey. All you can eat & drink led to missed metro, led to all night karaoke, led to sore, sore heads but fab if somewhat fuzzy memories.

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