Rain rain rain
Rishiri Travel Blog› entry 12 of 52 › view all entries
I wake up the next morning expecting to hike to the top of the volcano on the island today. But just a few seconds after I wake up I realize this is not gonna happen. I look out the window and there are thick clouds hanging on top of the volcano - actually they are hanging almost all the way down to sea level. And it is raining hard. There are no way I or anybody else will be hiking to the top today - unless they are utterly crazy. Hence I need to do something else - but my second option - cycling the island might still be feasible but it is not really appealing with this much rain falling constantly.
Somewhat disappointed I go down for the breakfast. Once again the meal is a true feast. Though I doubt I will ever become fan of a breakfast made using rice and fish as the main ingredients. Another little thing during breakfast is the Japanese love to mix their rice with raw egg - the use of raw eggs for eating has more or less been outlawed in Denmark and I am not sure if it will be some sort of violation of the term of my travel insurance if I knowingly consume raw eggs. I just might lose my coverage for my insurance. After a few moments of thought I figure when in Rome do as the Romans and I go for the rice and raw egg solution.
I wonder what to do with the day considering I am sort of stuck in this tiny city on a small island with not much going on except the nature. Hence when the weather prevents being outdoors your options are extremely limited.
I end up getting an umbrella and walk down to a small park down at the camping lot next to the harbor. There are not a lot in the park but a bit of the local vegetation and you can see a bit out over the water - in clear weather you could also see the volcano from here. I spend some time at this place because I meet a Japanese man who had camped inside the tourist information area. We talk for a bit and he is up here because he has quit his job. I have met a few now who says they are in Hokkaido on holiday because they have quit their old job without having found another. I don’t know if they are actually telling the whole truth and they really have quit their jobs without a backup solution - or if it is something in the Japanese physic which prevents them from saying if their company have let them go because of the recession. Though they all seems to have lived life’s which do not fit with the usual stereotype of all Japanese being workaholics who do not take any holiday and work for the same company from they get out of university until retirement.
It is about lunchtime and our paths go each separate way I walk along and realize it might possibly be rain less by now.
The bike works all right on the flat parts - but there are some minor hills where the size of the bike turns out to be a problem. It is simply not possible for me to apply sufficient force to the pedals on such a small bike - hence I need to take it slowly uphill just making sure the bike will keep moving at a reasonable pace. Along the road are many tiny shrines facing down towards the water. Most of them looks like a little shed for storing tools or something like that.
After a while I get to a spot where all the tourist buses also seem to make a stop on their tour around the island - hence I guess there must be something of some interest here. I stop and I see there are a couple of seals swimming around in a small pool of water sealed off from the ocean. They are being fed fish by the tourist passing by - and of course the tourist are all using chopsticks to pick up the fish and through it to the seals.
I continue my trip around the island and for a little while I actually think it just end up being sunshine for the last bit of my ride -- at one stage I can almost see the volcano. But then the weather take a turn for the worse - and I am still about 17 km from where I need to go. And now it starts to rain - first a little bit - but the rain picks up quickly. I am getting soaked but I haven’t really got any options but to continue my journey towards Kutsugata. When I finally arrive I must look like a drowning mouse and the host at the minshuku suggests a quick bath before dinner - and I must admit I tend to agree with this suggestion. Hence freshly washed I go down for the highlight of the day - the dinner which is quite outstanding.