We departed on 6:20 am, and it was still dark outside. It took 4 hours to go to Kameyama, where we had finished walking last time. In front of the station, there was a bakery, which was our favorite since dropped by for the first time last time. We bought some bread as our snacks. It was still 10:00 am and we are going to walk for 3 days from now on. The weather was cloudy and sunny, and not so cold for the day, the weather report said.

Soon after we started walking from Kameyama-Shuku, however, rain started to pour strongly . It was sunny but so windy, and our umbrellas were almost flown away. Such weird weather. The surface of Ono River was glittering with the warm sun, but our legs were becoming very wet.

Rain and wind were getting stronger and stronger. We arrived at Sekishuku. Originally, my mom was so excited about seeing the street view, which had an Tokaido -like atmosphere. However, we had to walk with umbrellas and could not see forward at all. Rain and wind were just so strong.

My mom knew there was a tea specialty store called “earl gray” in Seki-Shuku. So, we dropped by there.”Are you heading for Kyoto? Are you from Edo(*Edo is an old name of Tokyo)? “, an old lady staff in the cafe asked. We surely came from far away. Christmas ornaments and cups were sweet although the cafe was not quite of the Tokaido atmosphere.

Sitting nearby the window in the cafe, the tea, scones, Kameyama-Miso-Udon and even a piece of cake (!) tasted good overall. Outside, it kept raining although sometimes it weakened . Sometimes it was even hailing. A post office man delivered something to the staff from the rainy outside.Although it was pretty warm inside the cafe, our legs were still very wet.

An old staff lady said “there is nothing in front of the shack” (she called the place where we would stay that night “shack” instead of calling it hotel or inn.) “There is only deer and wild boar, and maybe monkeys? Sometimes more than 20 or 30 monkeys appear in the paddy” she continued. It seemed she was suggesting us to stay in the cafe instead of going out in the rain. She poured loquat tea for us, which was the most popular tea according to her. She also gave us two bags of tea when we left, additionally giving me two candies.

The outside was still rainy, and we didn’t care about the wetness of our legs anymore. It was lucky enough we only had to walk for 13 km for the day.

The road wasn’t “nothing” as she said. Well, in our words, it was just “as we expected”. After we climbed up a final slope, there was the”shack” we would stay in. We were the only guest s for the day, it seemed. For dinner, we had wild boar and a trout specialty food. We were served deep-oil fried trout, raw sliced trout, vinegar pickled trout and more… All styles of food that we can think of were served with trout.

Today was just the first day of three days of walking . Our walking will continue tomorrow.

Author

I write down my thoughts about the places and cultures I visited and Japan where I was born and grew up, trying to share my thoughts with my friends around the world. Now based in Tokyo.

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