Saturday, 16 February 2013

Homeward bound

Monday 11th February 2013

MP3 track of the day: The littlest hobo

weather: Sunny and remarkably warm for this time of year.

There is a place reserved in hell for the guy who designed this train carriage. The seat was to short and it didn't recline enough. The window ledge was to high and to long to allow your arm to rest on it while propping your head; and yet it was to low and to short to rest your head directly onto it. However the worst thing, by a mile, was the leg room. There was enough leg room to get your legs 'in line' with your body however, that was it. A steel girder prevented me from stretching my legs out underneath the seat in front of me. This resulted in my legs being in the same position for seven hours. At the end of the trip my right knee was in total agony. When the train finally made it to Aomori, I got out of my seat and tried to walk normally. After a while my bones popped back into their usual positions and I changed trains bound for Aomori's Shinkansen station, which was only moments away. I sat down glad to see that this carriage was better designed.

Once at Aomori's shinkansen station I had a couple of hours to kill. I read more of my book (which is really good) and then went up onto the platform to greet my train when it arrived.

Being a Shinkansen train, the leg room almost had no limit; it was a shame that I was only on the train for a hour. I spent most of the time looking at the scenery. Even though I did this journey three days ago, it was at night; being able to see my surroundings allowed me to judge that, even though Northern Honshu was covered in snow, the depth was no way near of that of Hokkaido.

Once back in Morioka I had yet another long wait. You see, to get home I could use the bus which brought me to Morioka four days earlier, or I could use the train which I had never travelled on before. The time was 8:40am and the next train was at 11am. This left ample time for me to get some breakfast (at the same restaurant I went to before I left Morioka last Thursday) and to do some shopping before finding a seat on 'platform 2' to read more of my book and await my train.

The train, being only two carriages long, was dwarfed by the platform. I therefore had to leave my seat and walk to it. As Miyako is a small town I had fully expected this service to be a bit of a joke; indeed I had already thought of many humorous ways to describe the journey I was about to take however, in the end none were needed. Firstly I thought that only I, a tambourine, a penguin and a discarded chocolate bar wrapper would be the only passengers on the train, but no. Far from being full, the train had at least forty people on it. Also my seat was comfortable, my window was large, the temperature was perfect, the speed was quick and I had a lot of leg room. I sat back ready to enjoy the view.

At first the train parted company with the main road to Miyako and I saw a lot of small communities which I didn't even know existed. We were so far away from the road that I lost sight of it for long periods and I wondered if I had boarded the wrong train. Finally, after an hour, the train track and road meandered along as one and I relaxed. The views had been great, the ride had been comfortable and so I would defiantly use the train again.

As the train approached Miyako station I knew my holiday had ended. I walked into my apartment, unpacked my stuff and went shopping for food. Once at the local supermarket who should I bump into but three of my students: “...Hey Missster Mashu … what sports do you like...” said one student. I sighed; it could be worse I suppose.

Toodle Pip!

No comments:

Post a Comment