søndag den 22. juli 2007

Tuesday Nov. 14 - Last Ride In The Mountains

Off I ride, sun shining from a clear blue sky. It’s all of 18 degrees, Mt. Fuji in my rear view mirror, and my last Japanese mountain road riding ahead. I don’t know if it is because this is the last time, but having fought my way up, up and up, in second gear most of the way, and I now stand looking out over yellow and red mountain forests, which I felt cheated for yesterday, the scenery seem almost unreal. This place is more beautiful than any other place I’ve seen on the whole trip, an observation due neither to the oxygen-poor elevation, nor that I’ve been mixing up my medication again. It is also a bit sad, and I don’t feel like going back to Tokyo again at all, despite all the good people I’m going to meet down there.

Another hour of riding along a forest lake, in and out of a long series of tunnels, on a road where a lot of other motorcyclists and scooterists also have found their way out. Then two hours of hellish road a bit north of Tokyo, the falcons of the forests replaced by an old military Convair turboprop plane doing lazy circles over the stinking cityscape. And in the end, still in the stench of the local industries, on an expressway north, to a town that must be large enough to have an internet café. Honda has a good museum up here, and I try to time things so I can make it back to Chiba tomorrow evening.

Finding the very cheapest hotel in town is difficult, but the run-down place has style. A hopeless style, actually, some sort of hillbilly rusticism, and common showers on the ground floor. It will disappear when the owner dies or retires, which still is a shame.

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