Irishman Strolling is about my walking the coastal roads of Japan through a sequence of summer, winter, spring, and autumn stages. Stage 2 started in the metropolis of Noshiro, Akita Prefecture within the winter of 2009, and led to Tsuruoka City, Yamagata four weeks later in January 2010. Final summer time (2012), Stage eight started at Shibushi Port in Kagoshima Prefecture on the southern island of Kyushu, and ended within the metropolis of Fukuoka six weeks after setting off. Then in winter Stage 9 began from Fukuoka and resulted in Hiroshima Metropolis on the island of Honshu. The stage lasted for 3 weeks. Stage 10 is planned to start out from Hiroshima this coming spring and will end within the metropolis of Okayama in late-March 2013. The stage is deliberate to final for about two to a few weeks.
Much of December (2009) was taken up with making preparations for the primary winter of my mission. Stage 2 was scheduled to start from Noshiro in Akita, where Stage 1 ended! It was in direction of the end of autumn with the mud and cobwebs from my coastal tramp final summer time nonetheless lingering sturdy in my mind. Yet, no sooner had the college holidays begun to attract close to that ideas of embarking on the following stage of my mission started to creep in. A lot so in actual fact that I longed to be on the long hard roads once more with my old buddy the Nihon Kai (Japan Sea) for company within the cold winter winds. However, it was not till lengthy after I used to be on the long onerous roads during Stage 1 that I learned simply how much my preparation then had been a near whole waste of time. This time I needed to place extra thought into my planning!
At any time when I used to be a baby growing up on the streets of Belfast donkey's years ago, and like many of my mates in these days, there was an endless dream about great adventures. We have been all followers of the tv program sequence ‘Ivanhoe’, and had watched the 1960 movie ‘Spartacus’ that stared such greats as Kirk Douglas, Laurence Oliver, Charles Laughton, Jean Simmons, and others. I could not recall a more inspiring movie plot for our younger minds than an army of freed slaves, led by Spartacus, and their revolt in opposition to the mighty Roman Empire. Even for me during these youthful days, it was a transferring and compelling story of epic proportions. So it did not matter any if the historic accuracies have been placed on the shelf to get the storyline throughout.
Now all of those years later, I was very a lot a mature grownup, a man of two minds -- afraid of a great venture and unafraid of venture. Ever since those childhood days I plunged into every kind of challenges and dares, big and small. In fact, this 'plunge' was typically performed without planning or thinking issues by correctly. I didn't cause much at all, or think I wanted to. As long as my actions didn't harm others, then why should I? So long as no one else was involved in any form or form, or legal guidelines broken, then I saw no downside in living my life, my means. Evidently, nevertheless, I suffered the consequences for my selfishness on a very good variety of events. And was usually left with the scars to remind me.
When preparing for his winter journey, the noted seventeenth-century poet and diarist, Matsuo Basho, spoke of being given poems and letters of farewell. Basho was even despatched cash for straw sandals, which helped spare him the difficulty of getting ready for his journey, which he stated took so long as three months. “In reality, every part I needed for my journey - the paper raincoat, the cotton-stuffed mantle, the hat, the stockings, etc., to maintain me heat in the dead of winter - was given me by my associates, and as I used to be invited to events on a ship, at my associates' houses, and even at my very own hermitage, I became used to the pomp and splendor of feasting unawares and virtually fell a sufferer of the phantasm that a man of importance was leaving on a journey" (Basho: translation by Nobuyuki Yuasa).
What was there to worry about once I had a handful of vitamin drugs, a few sizzling patches to keep me heat, and a few luggage of resins and varied kinds of nuts donate