Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Travelling north

From Niigata I headed north, through towns and villages. I was sad to see piles of daikon and cabbage rotting in vegetable patches... presumably a glut on the market meant it was not possible or not feasible to sell them.

The first change was in Murakami with a 40 minute wait between trains.  I had been keen to look around there - it's an historical town, and is also famed for salmon. Lily's friend Kazuo-san had given me some salmon from there before and it was delicious.   But it was cold and wet.  The rain was of the cold, hard sharp variety that feels like needles jabbing into the skin; since splitting my forehead a couple of years ago I'm quite sensitive to it, so didn't venture far.   I was thankful for the bento that Lily had packed and Tomoya's accompanying note to enjoy eating it  and to please come again made it taste all the better:).

The train from Murakami was a two carriage train to Sakata, on a line that traces the Japan Sea Coast.  On a cold and wet day it was pretty.  On a day with better weather it would be stunning.  Such a peaceful way to travel - a two carriage train trundling along,  the Japan Sea on the west, mountains rising behind a narrow coastal strip in the east....

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