One of the destinations on our upcoming mini road trip. That bench is one of my favourite places in Japan.
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Usually at this time of year I’d be packing for a two week trip to Australia with a group of kids. It’s one of the highlights of every year - two weeks on the Gold Coast surfing, cycling, hiking, camping, and more. The kids get exposure to a different culture, language, and environment, while I get to recharge my batteries and restock on Branston Pickle, Marmite, and HP Sauce. But again, as with last year, there will be no Australia trip this summer.
So instead my family and I are going on a small week-long road trip. I can’t wait. We’re leaving tomorrow. No cities, minimal interaction with other people, and plenty of outdoor goodness. Work doesn’t restart until September so there is plenty of time for getting out and about. Expect more posts on my website than in July. The plan for July was to go to the Minami Alps but the weather wasn’t cooperating except for on the long weekend which would have been the worst time to go to the mountains. The mountains for me are a place to get away from people. Likewise, I’ll be avoiding Yama-no-hi (Mountain Day) this August for the same reason.
One of the main reasons for the trip is that, like many of us, I’m tired of the news and want to escape - no YouTube, Netflix, Nagoya heat, or pandemic news. Airplane mode on my iPhone? Absolutely!
I’d consider going back to the UK instead for a month but my initial vaccine appointment isn’t until mid-September and I don’t want to waste time in quarantine (in the UK and Japan). I find it incomprehensible that the Japanese government is dragging its feet so much regarding vaccine rollout despite advising everyone of the urgency to go and get it. Trying to book an appointment online is futile at the bigger vaccination centres - a whole month of appointments filled up in 5 minutes when I tried, while the smaller centres in my city are only open a few times a month. So there was no choice but to go to my local clinic. It’s a shame because my father is sick and is yet to see his granddaughter in the flesh.
By the way, thanks to those of you who sent advice regarding my lower back. The pain has gone and as I suspected the cause was mainly tight hamstrings and stupidity - not stretching properly after exercise. Lesson learnt (again).
Posts this month
(I read less in July than most months because of the Tour de France.)
The Turning- Tim Winton
Wanderlust - Rebecca Solnit
What We Drew - Yaeji
Be Right Back - Jorja Smith