I didn’t get enough sleep.
Thankfully, I was still functioning.
I would have had to have gotten up very early to do it, as there would have been about five hours spent on traveling.
尾道市(Onomichi) was the starting point.
That wouldn’t have taken too long to get to.
I was going to cycle the しまなみ海道 (Shimanami Kaidō) bike-way, which would have taken, by estimate, four hours.
What I would have done on the other side would have posed a problem.
If I took public transport back to 尾道市, it would have taken well over an hour to get back.
Had I used public transport to go around west first, then back to Miyajimaguchi, or back to 尾道市 first, then that also would have taken a while.
I know spending a while traveling after a long cycle is the worst thing in the world, but I knew I wouldn’t be up for it and it would have been a bit of a waste of time as I could instead spend that time exploring places, such as 厳島(Itsukushima), instead, which is what I decided to do during the previous day.
The other thing that was a deciding factor for me not going is that we hadn’t decided where to go yet with the days we still had to book accommodation for, so I thought it would be easier to go to 尾道市 so I could spend as little time as possible traveling to get to the start of the bike-way.
I also thought the town would have some interesting things to check out.
My plan for the day was to walk along the Tsutsumigaura nature walk there and see where it took me.
Before leaving, I asked Gabe as to whether he had booked for 尾道市 (we ended up deciding to go there during the previous night as well).
He told me he didn’t see why he had to book everything.
He had a point.
However, he had agreed to book somewhere during the previous days.
I booked a place at HTS Guest House Onomichi and told him once I was done.
I headed out to 厳島 with one of the people I had been talking to during the previous night (Jay).
We went for breakfast once we reached the town.
I can’t quite remember what I had. I think it was a chicken dish.
I know it was good.
I walked with Jay to show him the path to 弥山 (Mount Misen) via0 紅葉谷公園 (Momijidani Park) as he was interested in checking it out.
Then I started making my way to the Tsutsumigaura nature walk.
When I was walking there, I saw a few pathways that lead away from the road I was on.
I wanted to explore them, but decided against as I didn’t know how long I would end up spending if I were to.
It didn’t take too long to reach the start of the trail.
I’d say… about thirty or forty minutes due to not taking a direct route.
The walk was an easy, and straightforward.
It allowed for many beautiful views of parts of 厳島 that one wouldn’t normally see.
Vegetation was thick and abundant.
For me, it was very much like bushwalking.
Well, it was whenever there weren’t hornets I’d run from as they were hovering directly in front of me as I thought they were the Japanese giant hornets.
Other than that, very much like bushwalking.
The track ended in a cabin and camping area.
I found a bathroom and went to use it.
However, near the toilet there was an insect that I had seen pictures of before but was unfamiliar with.
I wasn’t sure if it was aggressive or not, so I let it be, hoping that I had not disturbed its being.
Turns out it was a house centipede, so I was safe.
After a few minutes of walking, I came to the beach I had visited on the previous day.
As far as I was aware, the track was meant to continue beyond here.
I came across a road that lead further on and decided to follow it as I thought it would lead to the remainder of the trail.
There was a lot of walking that day.
I had already walked quite a lot during the trip, but this was the point where I did the greatest amount.
The road was quite long, winding around hills and following occasional beaches.
On the beaches I passed I would see a shrine facing the ocean.
It was a curious, picturesque sight.
I was lucky enough to see a Japanese macaque.
I wasn’t able to get a picture of it as it was out of sight before I could pull my camera out.
I don’t mind though.
I don’t think I would have been able to do it justice.
The road went on and on never seeming to stop.
It would only continue forward.
The theory that during the descent of Mount Fuji, we were actually in hell, was just that: a theory.
We couldn’t see the sixth station due to the fog and it did seem unending, but at least there was an end.
This was beautiful, winding around hills, seeing the ocean, islands, beaches, wildlife, but it never ended.
Everything could be seen but there was no end in sight.
The farther I walked, the farther it stretched out.
It was so obvious and yet, it wasn’t.
I was given the smallest slither of hope and had it gradually seeped away from me until eventually the walking became something I could not stop, despite my pleas to give up.
As I walked further on I noticed the roots that were burrowing into the sky, slowly breaking its complexion down into edible pieces for the sea creatures waiting underneath.
As what remained of the sky turned into rot, the creatures that were hidden from my view approached me with confidence.
They kept their gnashing teeth on the ready and their hearts hidden from view.
The roots continued their push upwards and I kept walking but the road only continued to persist, refusing to allow an end to this journey.
One of the creatures then spoke:
“DOES A FLOWER CRY?!
Eventually I reached a point where the road forward was closed and the only way to continue was to follow one that headed away from the ocean, up a hill.
Feeling that this was a familiar situation, I decided against going further and began to walk back.
There was a sign nearby that said the pier was eight-and-a-half kilometres away.
Not another walk through eternity!
To be fair, the walk wasn’t that bad.
It just felt long.
Eventually I decided to try and get a lift back to town.
My feet were starting to tire more than I thought they would.
The first vehicle that I stopped wouldn’t take me due to space.
They told me to ask the next person.
The next person took me to the campgrounds.
From there, it was an easy walk.
Soon I was on my last ferry to Miyajimaguchi.
Whilst there was still a fair bit to cover and I wouldn’t be returning during the trip, I was lucky enough to see a good portion of 厳島.
It was a satisfying experience.
Once I was back at the hostel, I offered to buy Jay, Gabe and another person beer.
Jay, the other person and I went to the rooftop to watch the sunset.
It was a good way to close the day.
Then I went to sleep.
That’s what should have happened.
So we went back down and drank some more.
I was eating pizzas as well and ended up eating four.
There were three people there that had heard about how Gabe had bought ten shots during the previous night.
They decided to have ten each and if they were able to have them all, one of them was going to pay for all the shots.
I had bought a few shots as well, but as they weren’t finished, I gave them one.
Jay, the other person, a couple who joined us and I headed for the local 7-Eleven to buy more alcohol.
I went barefoot as I couldn’t be bothered putting my shoes on.
We were back pretty quickly with more to drink.
I bought myself a sake and plum wine and downed them pretty quickly.
Then it became hard to talk for a while.
Once I was able to talk properly again, I bought a cassis and orange.
That wasn’t the best idea I’ve had.
Eventually I decided to go to bed as I was done for the evening.
I said goodnight to everyone I could (most of the people staying at the hostel were drinking at this point [somewhere around midnight]), then made my way up the stairs to my bed.
I don’t know how I did it.
I was sleeping on the third floor which meant I had more stairs than a drunk person should ever have to go up.
I somehow made it.
I also don’t know why, after making my way up, getting to my bed was an impossible task.
I looked at the ladder and decided that it would be less arduous to find an unused bed that was a bottom bunk.
I found one pretty quickly.
Almost as quickly I had to get out of it to make my way to the bathroom.
I threw up slightly on a toilet door, then let loose in a sink.
I then failed miserably when I attempted to clean it out and managed to fill the sink up more using water to try and get my stomach’s semi-liquid gift to the world to go down the drain.
As I was too drunk to do clean it properly, I decided it would be better to try in the morning, so I wobbled my way to the new bed and very quickly passed out.