From the 28th of February to the 2nd of March 2018 and from the 19th to the 22nd of March 2018. After a brief stay in Fukuoka to see again some friends and deal with some paperworks, I’m definitely on the way towards the north of Japan. I’m going to stop in Hiroshima and most of all to meet Daisuke who is living in a small city called Takehara and who invited me to spend few days in his house. This is why I’m traveling. Because the encounters you have on the roads are changing your life. Takehara was simple and perfect. It was so well that I decided to go back and brought some friends with me. (Video at the end of the article… 😉 )
(Vous pouvez lire cet article en français ici : Takehara au Japon : Quand tu reviens parce que c’était bien)
Japan. I arrived there mid-January. It’s cold there in winter. Even in the Kyushu which is the region in the south of the mainland. So, after I decided to stay a while in Okinawa to try to warm myself up a little bit (You can also read : Pirates, treasure hunt and open heart surgery), I’m back on the mainland. A short stop again in Fukuoka to see some friends I met there and to manage some paperworks (As I had a special visa… I was officially living in Fukuoka and I had to pay 2 or 3 things… Anyway, we don’t really care as it’s not important for the rest of the story… At least not for this one), and then I go back on the road towards Hiroshima first and Takehara..
Takehara is a small city at 50km, east of Hirsohima. I let you check on the map : Takehara.
How I ended up there? Well, thanks to the hospitality networks I’m registered in on Internet. When I published a notification saying that I was going to come to visit Hiroshima, I received an invitation from Daisuke, who offered to me to come spend few days at his house. The advantage again of being free, and not planning anything in advance, I jumped on the opportunity and I accepted. I didn’t regret it one second!
28th of February 2018. Under a torrential rain, I start hitchhiking in the middle of the afternoon from Hiroshima to Takehara where I arrive around 18:00/19:00. I’m not gonna talk about this trip now, but so far at this moment I had just lived the worst hitchhiking experience of my young life as a hitchhiker (Maybe I’ll write this story one day on this blog).
When I get droped off at the train station, the sun is going down. The time to walk towards Daisuke’s house, and the night is there. It’s still raining… But nothing to be compared with the rain from this afternoon when I left Hiroshima. Anyway I’m already wet (Even if I managed to dry a little in the car, few more drops won’t make a big difference). I arrive in the good street. I know that I’m not far, but most of the houses don’t have the number written on them… I wander in the neighbourhood, hoping to catch some Wi-Fi (Thanks Japan for that, this is so great!), in order to send a message to Daisuke. I find one, a weak one, but still enough. I stayed in the middle of the road (Well… On the side the Wi-Fi wasn’t working…) in front of a closed hair salon down the street. Message sent, hoping that Daisuke is not to far from his phone. I receive a message soon after… He is coming to look for me. A car arrives, a tall guy in a suit get off with a big smile. We load my backpack in the car. We ride for 50m (Yep… I haven’t forgotten to write another “0”, I told you I wasn’t very far…)… He parks the car… We are arrived… Easy-peasy!!
Daisuke is living in a traditional beautiful japanese wooden house! With a small squared centered garden. And… Very cold as all japanese houses I visited so far. Japanese people don’t seem to see the utility of isolation in houses. Anyway… We switch on the heater, and good surprise, tonight Daisuke invites me to have dinner. In the menu : Homemade vegetarian Okonomiyakis (Yummi!!), beer, wine, sake, talks and music. That’s it! With that you have the perfect base for a good evening.
But the best and most important, it’s when you have the chance to spend this evening in very good company, that you don’t realise how late it is and that at 3:00am you look at the clock and say to yourself “Dammit already?! Maybe I should think about going to sleep…”.
Oh and here is the recipe for the Homemade Okonomiyakis in picture! Lucky you! You can admit that I’m pretty cool no? 😉
1st of Marchs 2018. Daisuke has to work, so I decide to go visiting and discovering the city and its historic neighbourhood. I also do some grocery shopping so that I can cook the dinner tonight. We will spend again a very nice evening talking, eating and playing music. After that, you obviously don’t want to leave…
2nd of March 2018. Daisuke, on the way to work, give me a ride and drop me off on a rest area on the highway as today I’m going to hitchhiking towards Kobe.
After my first stay in Takehara, I keep going north. I meet another great adventurer, Anita. We travel together and later on a friend of her join us in Osaka. We spend some days in Nara and then the weather forecast is annoucing bad conditions. We abandon the idea of going to hike for 3 days in the mountains. So… What are we gonna do? Where could we go at 3 people to find a shelter to protect us against the torrential rains arriving?… Because camping is nice but under the rains it doesn’t make me dream so much… And it’s at this moment that I immediately think about Daisuke… I send him a message to ask him if we could come to squat for few days, and of course, he tells me that we are very welcomed!!
That’s the starting point of 330km hitchhiking at 3 from Nara to Takehara. And we made it! We arrive at 2:00am. Daisuke had let the door opened for us and even woke up to welcome us with a big sleepy smile!
It’s as if I was back home 🙂
Everyone seems to get along perfectly. I’m happy to have all these persons, who became so important to me, at the same place. Then that starts again, same recipe, good meal, beers and sake, lots of good friends and music. New magical and unforgettable moments.
To be sure that you understand and those who don’t want to read… I made a little video 😉 !!