Sunday 28 August 2022

Part 1: My 700km bike trip to Sapporo from Fukushima, Japan.

 The beginning.
The month of July in Japan is the summer vacation month for school kids and this is the only time in the year were they get a  month of happiness, fun, playing, and traveling.  So that means, I as a teacher also get a whole month of doing nothing. hehe. I can't stress enough the pain of waiting for July to come. It's like waiting for a delayed airplane. hehe.

Packed my bike and was ready to leave Hobara and head to Date Station. The total weight of my bike was around 20kg.

July tantrum.
I started making plans for my bike trip in June. When July came my traveling plans were already up. Every day in July I checked my plans, my working schedule, and google map. I felt like a spy working 24/7 spying on myself. hehe

I scheduled my 700km bike trip for  21st July. This is when the summer holiday starts. Then I waited and waited. But two days before the start of my summer holiday. I received an email from my employer scheduling my annual health checkup on the 27th of July. It felt like someone showed up at your party uninvited and drank all the beers. hehe

Anywhere, I emailed and asked for reschedule to a date before the 21st but my employer rescheduled again to a date within my travel plans. This time I felt like a ball hit me right in my stomach. hehehe

Panic kicked in and I went bazooka. I was like, "Nop!, I've planned for this trip and nothing is stopping me now". Anywhere, to make a story short, I rescheduled my health check after so many tussles with my employer at the very last minute to the 19th of the next month. So, at that point my soul was calm. My plans are going as planned. 

My planned bike trip was almost interrupted by some unforeseen circumstances.

                                                Biking day.

"This is the day", my mind was screaming after I  finished work at 3pm. I quickly biked home. My traveling stuff was packed the night before and was ready. I arrived home around 3:30 pm. Bike packing my bike and headed straight to Date station 6km east of my room. "No time to waste", I thought. I did not buy any food to bring along. In fact, I was in so much hurry because the train leaves in 30 times to Sendai. I planned to buy foodstuff along the way.

At Date station, I packed my bike into my bike bag and waited for the train to Sendai city.

                                             First stop, Sendai.

My actual biking started in Sendai, shortly after 8pm. After a short call to the Family mart convenience store just one block in front of Sendai station to buy light traveling food and a Monster energy drink. 

I then set my google map to Route 4 and off I rode. Route 4 is the main highway that starts in Tokyo and goes all the way to Aomori on the northern tip of the main Island of Japan. I was so excited about my trip that I felt like I wanted to shout out to everyone on the street. みなさん!わたし わ ほかいど に ちたんさで 行きましょう!(Everyone, I am going to Hokkaido by bicycle)hehehe.

The summer weather was perfect, 27 degrees Celsius with a warm breeze and no rain. "What a perfect time to cycle!", my brain shouted after I checked the weather on my phone. 

My plan was simple, cycle all night for 200km and then rest a little during the day break in Marioka city. Some 200km north of Sendai. The only problem was I can't see the beautiful scenery cycling in the dark. "But it's worth covering a good distance", I thought. I felt like I'm being blindfolded and taken on a road trip. hehehe

Arriving at Sendai station and refitting my bike for the trip.

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