No winners of yesterday’s photo competition. I thought it was a breakfast cereal factory but the owner of the ryokan said it was the fifth biggest cement/concrete works in Japan.
Today’s walk was a lightweight 18Km to Temple 37 which is halfway down the south west peninsula. We ordered breakfast for 7am, half an hour later than usual, hoping for a little more sleep. However sleeping was difficult as the rain lashed against the windows all night. This typhoon has a sting in its tail as it passes up the Sea of Japan.
After breakfast we dithered about what to do as the rain fell heavier than ever. There were lots of options. The traditional mountain trail was too dangerous to contemplate; we’d have been washed away. The river trail was flooded. The trains were cancelled and the roads were the new rivers. AccuWeather changed its forecast from one minute to the next. The promised window came and went and the rain continued to fall. 7.30 soon became 9.30. We pored over the map and chose the main road, mainly due to the large number of tunnels and off we went.
Within minutes we were drenched, the rain stopped and the sun came out. The season’s final typhoon had passed.
Our A56 worked its way through tunnels into the hills and everywhere torrents of water streamed around us. In the distance clouds hung in the valleys as the strong morning sunlight lit up the green hills. I packed my waterproofs away and splashed on sunscreen.
We arrived at Temple 37. It reminds me of a rather tired discount garden centre and normally I’d be back on the road in 20 minutes. This temple, like several others, offers accommodation to wealthy pilgrims and Sandrine wanted a temple experience before departing. So, we are here for the night. The experience includes having the run of the temple all night (although you can do that anyway) and a chanting service at 6am. I hope they don’t wake me up. But I shall probably be awake because a local train rattles past my window every 7 minutes.