Japan 8 - Things Changed Fast


So another train ride, two authentic hot Japanese baths, two hot cups of loose green tea, a hot ginger honey tofu drink and I am completely on the mend. My how opulent pampering can aid an ailing constitution. The Ryoken is almost dream-like. I have not ever experienced anything like it in my life. The sound of running water and a mountain view that takes the breath away. Dinner will be served to our six room suite at 7pm.

Since we got here we have both been pretty much speechless. (good thing I did my research on how to perform an authentic Japanese bathing procedure it paid off in droves) – if you ever make it to Japan do some research on how to act and behave. It will save you loads of embarrassment, confusion and make for a much better understanding of what Japan is all about. My one free tip would be to stay away from the Japanese salt-plum called Umeboshi. There is little to like about this disturbing tasting pickled fruit that resembles what I would imagine a semi-mummified testicle might look and taste like. Other pickles I love – but this one is a killer for me – no surprise Daniela loves them.

Not sure much will happen tonight in reference to help generate any amusing anecdotes or yarns that might tickle your fancy as we have been literally transported into a world that closely resembles what may of been feudal Japan. Above the sound of the water we can hear the toads, crickets and birds calling out in the heights of the mountains. it is 5pm and the sun is dissolving into dusk and there is a mist dropping from the heights above into the valley that our room looks out upon. The wind is kicking up and lights are popping on in the underbrush helping to define the remarkable landscaping and gardens.

The experience here is one that can not really be described. It is a good way to celebrate a half-century of living as well as the ten-year anniversary of a very exceptional marriage. If I was to travel back in time thirty-five years I doubt very much I could of or would of imagined how far I would travel in life over the time that is now lost to the past. Times like these make us feel very optimistic, reflective and thankful.

Daniela put this trip together and did an exceptional job. The crickets are getting louder and the steam off of our bath is getting higher and whiter. By midnight I imagine Daniela will have a good case of the hee-bee jee-bees as we are pretty high up and deep in the forest. Nature seems to be taking over fast as night falls.

The public baths are open all night so we may explore them after dinner. It will take me a few minutes to tape up my tattoos, as they are forbidden at public baths – a symbol of the Yakuza or Japanese Mafia.

More in the am. or later tonight if I get inspired (which happens easily here). Daniela is already getting creeped out. We just heard a twig snap in the bush.