Sunday, March 22, 2020

Temple 40 and a race against time

 The Ryokan was noisy all night with the loud snoring of the other male tenants all night long. It kept Dreadknot awake but somehow I managed to sleep through it all. The cigarette smoke from the guy in the room adjacent to us easily wafted through the paper thin walls separating us.
At 6:44 am we made our way to Temple 40 (Kanjiziaji) , the first temple in Ehime and located up the street.  This is the furthest temple away from number 1 and has statues representing the seven zodiac. As usual it was lovely and peaceful and afterwards we sat and waited for a bus to take us to Uwajima bus station to get onto another bus for Temple 41. Halfway through the bus ride we decided to rather just keep heading straight towards the airport after numerous warnings from friends that we might not be able to get back into Honolulu due to travel restrictions, flight suspensions and border closures. I must say that Dreadknot-san’s navigational skills with the mapping and bus and train timetables is absolutely astounding! I am so glad to have him on my team!! After 10 hours of catching buses and trains we arrived at Kansai Airport in Osaka. It was 8 pm and we made our way straight to the Hawaiian Airlines desk. They instantly changed our ticket to tomorrow evening and informed us that flights to Hawaii will cease in three days time. Whew! We made it just in time!
So we get to spend a night in Osaka and do some shopping tomorrow and then get to go home before everything shuts down due to the coronavirus pandemic. 
Although disappointed that we couldn’t complete our quest this time around, we are truly thankful that we were able to have such a spectacular adventure up to Temple 40.
Arigato to the people of Japan and especially Shikoku who made our journey so special and memorable. We honestly were treated with such kindness and we shall be eternally grateful. It has been quite a profound experience to be gifted with “ossetai” (gifts) on almost a daily basis by complete strangers as symbols of acknowledgement and encouragement. We hope to return once the world has found calmness, health and peace and continue where we left off. 

No comments:

Post a Comment