There is always a place where one feels a strange connection. Japan has been that place to me so far. For someone who grew up fascinated to European geography and history, there is something about Japan that draws me in. Whenever I visit, I’m completely at ease and somehow, I feel like I could live here rather than just be a guest. It is one of my goals to live in Japan, in a way I could tell if this odd attachment could result into something permanent or if it would just wear out akin to fleeting thoughts.A huge portion of this Japan trip was unplanned. There’s a number of reasons why I travel alone, and having arrangements that is a mix of disorganized, strategic and spontaneous is one. In short, I’m the only one who could understand my own system. I want to avoid being a burden to others while for my part, I want to be able to do things without regrets, hence my 80% lonesomeness during travels.
No, it is neither a lonely nor boring experience. Indulging in one’s own curiosity is good opportunity to learn. I reckon in some instances this could be compromised in a group setting where collective interest comes first over personal one.
Before this “reflection” hit its fifth paragraph, the main reason why I came to Japan is to research for a project. I got interested in tea recently and decided that I could use this as material for the project. Shizuoka was the first tea-growing area that I visited two years ago and now, I came to Kyoto which is another important hub for the tea culture in Japan.
I spent my first day in Kyoto in a wonderful tea plantation in Wazuka. It was an eventful day from the start till the end (Indeed, it was an exciting 12 AM – 11:59 day. Please commend my endurance).
12AM- THE AIRPORT WAIT
Luck was not on my side during the first part of the trip in South Korea, and even up to the last moments in the airport, it refused to lend its charm.
I was supposed to stay in a spa-like place in the airport but unfortunately, it was fully booked. My phone had to be charged as well before I could rest. So I went to Burger King, ate burgers, charged my phone and waited for it to reach at least halfway of its power. I think I might have lost my love for burgers after that night. I slept at the bench in front of a check in counter, though it is much more suitable to call those naps. The bright side was I managed to sleep during the whole flight to KIX.
9AM-12PM THE JR QUEUE and the dash to catch Haruka
Groggy zombie. That is what I looked like around ten. The appointment was at two in the afternoon so I thought I had enough time. The queue in the JR office crushed my plans to smithereens. I had to run to catch the Haruka train, I just can’t bear to be late.
12PM-1PM TRAIN SNOOZE
I refused to sleep because at this stage, I know that I will not be able to wake up unless someone shakes me vigorously. I was that sleepy. I would’ve have woken up in Osaka instead of Kyoto.
1PM-2PM Dash 2.0- TO WAZUKA!
My first estimated extra time was 45 mins to an hour however the JR office queue in the airport led to a decrease of 20 mins. As soon as I checked in, I went back as soon as I could to the train station to travel to Wazuka. It was a smooth journey from that point and the scenery along the way could captivate even the most fatigued traveler.
The rest of the day will be narrated in the next post.