Finally, the two day delay due to my blood infection is over. Today, the team was able to continue making headway toward the trip after I visited a local hospital for my last follow-up appointment regarding the deep scrape on my right palm from my fall last Friday. The doctor thought everything looked good and Dylan, Scott and I said farewell to Kitakyushu.
We made a brief stop in Mojiko to take a picture with the locally famed “Banana Man” statue as well as to dine at a delicious Indian curry restaurant per Dylan’s recommendation. Then it was on to business, turning tail on Kyushu Island and starting in on Japan’s main island Honshu. Oddly, I’ve grown somewhat attached to cycling in Kyushu since it’s where the team learned the ropes of bicycle touring. We’ve learned a lot about what we need and don’t need and were thankfully able to ditch some gear, tune our cycles, and rest our muscles at Lori’s while I recovered. It’s almost like the training course is over and Honshu is the real deal.
Kyushu and Honshu are connected by the Kanmon Bridge. It being illegal for cyclists and pedestrians to travel on the bridge, we made our way to the main island via the underwater tunnel. After a few photos and video at the prefecture line we officially left Kyushu Island behind us.
The afternoon passed quickly and the 110km we pedaled seemed easier than our many of our sub-100 days starting out. Maybe we’re actually starting to be in decent riding shape. At the end of the day, around 7pm, we made it at little known Hofu station where we met Steffanie, our couchsurfing host tonight. She lived only a 5 min ride from the station, and we are very grateful for a roof and shower tonight. Steffanie is an enthusiastic sci-fi fan who also had recently been shopping at the local Costco. While she and Dylan discussed some finer points of Stargate, we all enjoyed her distinctly western tortilla chips and salsa followed by quesadillas with real cheese and hot sauce!
Currently Dylan, Scott, and Steffanie are out to help one of her friends celebrate their birthday. Feeling quite drowsy, I opted to stay in and guard the fort while also writing this. Now finished, I think I’ll head to bed. Tomorrow we plan on riding the remaining 125km to Hiroshima and tour the sights there the following morning.
Thanks for tuning in!
Spock: Talking philosophy, in Japanese