Monday, November 4, 2013

Shikoku Revisited

This weekend I went to Shikoku, and I feel so happy now. I did so much in the span of three short days. I climbed Konpirasan, learned how to make udon from scratch (more on that later…), took to the ferry to and fro Naoshima, revisited my town of Marugame and Taupe cafe and too many memories, saw some my my oldest friends in Japan, walked in the Takamatsu shotengai and sketchy Lion-dori late at night, gazed at the dark sea remembering how lonely that place had made me feel, and appreciating my present life. Yet it was bittersweet: I realized that those quiet days filled with freedom and too many choices were now over, replaced by hectic, cold, stressful Tokyo.

I miss the friendliness and warmth of Kagawa and its people. I miss peacefulness and pitch black streets, and the rice fields. I also saw Shikoku from a much different perspective; I cannot believe I used to run by the Marugame harbour all by myself late at night and drunkenly ride my bike at 3am. I was a lot more careless and naive. I showed my old apartment to my boyfriend, and the places I used to ride my bike and hang out. It was quite amazing to do so, as I've always wanted to share that part of my life, and I think it's surprising for him that I lived there for a year. It felt really wonderful to be there with him, as I never thought that would happen (yes, it got that lonely).

I felt really sad to leave. Shikoku is my first home in Japan and it was such an important part of my adventure in Japan, probably because it was so challenging. I love going back now and seeing it with a fresh perspective, and finally appreciating that small prefecture and its amazing residents.

Sanuki Udon

The yellow noodle of 'happiness'

Shikoku has many outdoor bathrooms I noticed

Re-united, yum

Climbing Konpirasan

Those candies are particular to Kagawa,
used for weddings. Anyone know the name? 

Marugame station, still the same.
Please never get automated gates! xo

Spicy ginger tea at Taupe cafe, the best in Japan

My oldest Kagawa friends

Cafe chic

Three years later, with Shinya, the owner of Taupe
and his collection of animal pens. Nostalgia!

First time I fly to Shikoku

My lovely udon sensei

Rainy Naoshima

Naoshima

Naoshima cat cafe

Rain, rain

Shoe Shot

Naoshima

Knackered, cold and wet on the ferry ride back

More udon

Lion-dori, sketchiest place in Takamatsu

The beautiful Seto Inland Sea

Goodbye, Shikoku, from the airport

Takamatsu

2 comments:

Christine said...

It's nice that you visited your old home in Japan and come full circle.

Btw, I love your whole outfit! In love with your shoes ;)

spajonas said...

This looks like a fantastic trip! Love all the photos.