Sushu's Travel Journal

July 6, 2009

Filed under: Asia — Tags: — admin @ 10:54 pm

yummy ryoukan breakfast:
- shiyo salmon
- miso soup
- bacon wrapped in roll of nappa cabbage stewed in bonito sauce
- rice with nori strips
- pickled daikon, carrot, kurage and umeboshi
- tamago-yaki
- slice of grapefruit

What a feast!


Okay, my day has taken a turn for the worse. I was walking out the ryoukan and excited about our first real day in Japan. There was a light rain and I was really proud of the fact that I had an umbrella. I was stepping on air as I turned around to offer umbrella space to Jono. Literally. crash on the sidewalk. Scraped up my knee (some small cuts with a bit of blood), and even worse, severely twisted my right ankle. The same one from 2 years ago.

So I guess the good thing is that
(a) I had a small first aid kit that had the perfect band-aid for my knee, so that’s mostly taken care of.
(b) It was just outside the ryoukan, so I’ve stationed myself in the lobby while Jono goes to Mozilla Japan and runs errands like getting a Japan keitai and getting cash
(c) I know exactly how this will turn out — I can hobble very slowly and do some limited hopping today, but will be hobbling gainfully tomorrow. In about 3 or 4 days, my other foot/ankle will be hurt/swollen from all the pressure I’ll be putting on it. Then in about a week, I’ll be re-teaching myself how to walk with ankle-bending.

Hopefully this won’t put too much of a crimp in our Japan plans. My guess is hiking up to the 500 罗汉 is out, so I’ll just have to show Jono some Chinese ones instead. Jono has been tasked with finding a cane and some rolly bandages for me.

Right now he is supposedly on his way back from Moz Japan with Mitcho so that we can have lunch within hobbling distance. I hope they get back soon because I’m really hungry and tired. I’ve been up since 5am, and it’s somewhat uncouth to sleep in the lobby. Especially since I kind of loll when I sleep. So maybe some food would re-energize me.

And then maybe after lunch we can figure out exactly what we want to do in tohoku, and whether we should Shink up this afternoon and relax in a Hanamaki onsen (花卷, and yes, I crack up whenever I see the kanji), or whether we Shink up tomorrow morning so that I have more hobble-power.

There’s nothing like unexpected physical damage to remind me how fragile our bodies are and how much we are physically dependent on its continued functioning.


Okay, made it to Shin-hanamaki onsen. It was a long trip with unexpectedly more walking than anticipated, and my foot seems to have worsened. Of course, my left foot has been effectively hopping all day, which means it’s not in a great shape either. By the time I made it down the super-long 3 flights of stairs out of the shinkansen, I was doubting my sanity and also wondering if I’ve done something more than sprain my foot. :(

But people have been so helpful along the way. The ryoukan guy ran out with a cane as I was hobbling out of the ryoukan. At the Hanamaki Shinkansen station, after making it down all those stairs, the station attendant got me a wheelchair. The taxi driver then called ahead so that the onsen can prepare another wheelchair for me. Wheelchairs are so cool! Especially after lots of painful hobbling. :)

I think Jono had all the adventures today. I’m also worried that I won’t feel well enough to hobble anywhere for the next few days, thus killing any sight-seeing plans in Japan. (Especially since Tohoku is basically mountains and valleys.)


Okay, fun things of today after The Fall:
- witnessed a lot of bowing when a bunch of Japanese businessmen came into the ryoukan for a conference
- had a yummy 3-color-don, which is basically rice covered with: ground pork, salted salmon chunks, and scrambled tamago-yaki.
- learned that public womens’ restroom toilets play a flushing noise so that Japanese women don’t have to flush to hide their peeing noise. (o.O!!)
- Saw about 200 full-sized umbrellas and only 1 foldy umbrella
- rode on the Shinkansen!
- had kaiten-sushi, including a cool tofu/北极贝 thing.

Well, going to sleep now. Hopefully tomorrow my feet will be kinder. And maybe we will find some painkillers.

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