Woke up full of anxiety and ready to go home. No reason. Many unexpected challenges on this trip.
This pen is running out for one.
Solved that challenge.
Morning practice seems to have dealt with any other issues.
Breakfast was largely a repeat of yesterday, so, delicious.
I do not like this new pen, will need to find an alternative some time today.
The only other item on the agenda is a trip to the miso brewery, which should be easy to reach by bicycle.
Stopped on the way for some cold Boss and to buy a new pen.
Do not like the pen I bought and have had to buy another one.
Spent a lot of money at the miso brewery on three year old miso and ten year old shoyu, plus some rice biscuits just for Tanwyn.
Saw a raptor overhead on the way and when I was close to the brewery, I stopped to confirm directions and a crow on a nearby power pole began to caw directly at me. Very nice.
The tour of the brewery was not quite what I was lead to expect from the multiweb reviews. Having purchased my items, I asked about seeing the brewery in my poor Japanese, they had no English, but understood and left the checkout to open a couple of warehouse doors, so I could see the barrels.
Big barrels, two small rooms of them.
Google maps said there was a small, family run sake brewery not too far away. It had excellent reviews regarding the wine tasting and the quality of both the tour and the actual sake. So, on my bike I went.
Checking to stop final directions, a crow on a nearby power pole began cawing directly at me.
Sake place was as small as promised. The owner, however, was very reluctant to engage with me and I soon left without being offered any tastings or purchasing any product.
I like the latest pen.
Currently relaxing in a park that seems to be a hang out for the local old people. The pond has large koi that leap completely out of the water trying to catch pigeons. There are occasional raptors circling; turtles and crows. Is very pleasant.
Will eventually, slowly, make my way back to the ryokan, having done all I came to Matsumoto to do.
Have instead headed back to the castle grounds for one last viewing.
More pleasant than sitting in the ryokan room for the afternoon.
Enjoying a very relaxed and lazy day.
May need to buy another of these pens, quite nice to write with.
Stopped by Frog street on the way, following Tanwyn’s suggestion that pickle plates might be a good gift for Joe.
There was such a shop there, but nothing Joe worthy.
Did pick up a frog chopstick rest for Zoe, though.
Said to the shopkeeper in Japanese, that my daughter loves frogs, to which he replied, in perfect English, then she will enjoy that very much.
A good news text from Cinnamon, as I sit here looking at a five hundred year old Japanese castle, listening to an audio book on the relevance of Epicureanism to modern life.
Might sit for a bit longer.
Crows are cawing.
Back at the ryokan, have stocked up on tofu sticks for the evening and breakfast, along with some Chip Stars in honour of Zoe.
To round out the day a cawing crow landed at the base of the weir, just as I arrived back.
Bicycle legs can give no more.