Before Kazuko steals all my photo for the book of face, here’s what we’ve been up to since the weekend:

Yesterday we went for a ride to the park.

Me and Kaz took a stroll around the shrine. We saw a car blessing ceremony (which was over before I had time to lock the bikes and get my camera out) and then some wedding photos being taken.

It was a holiday yesterday so there was a lot of activity at the shrine.

We saw some people doing a bit of tree-pressing, so Kazuko had a go to see if she could pick up any special magical energy.

This is where they bless the beer barrels.

I was meeting some former students in the early evening so I spent the afternoon wandering around town. This beer garden was under the Sapporo TV Tower. This guy had a big glass of beer and a book. I’m sure it’s all he needed.

After wandering around town, I strolled out to the beer museum to meet the boys.

We signed on for all you can eat and drink. Here’s my apron and napkin.

We made sure we got value for money.

I have long asserted that beer is an essential weapon in every language student’s armoury. It bridges the gap between polite, awkward conversation and the desire to tell stories and have a good laugh. I got plenty of Japanese practice in last night.

The bear came around late in the evening. I should note I’ve kept in touch a little bit with these guys since I taught them the year before last. We’re all keen to go for a drink whenever I’m in Japan. I had suggested last night’s date because it was not long after I arrived and I don’t really know what I’ll be doing toward the end of my stay. When I got there last night, I asked if they were on holiday and three of them said no, they were actually starting exams today. I hope I haven’t ruined their studies for them.

Here’s me and the bear.

Team photo.

In the tram on the way home, I saw a bucket of umbrellas. Only in Japan would you expect people to use them then return them later.

Today I was surprisingly not too under the weather. I rode into town with Kazuko and bought a tent for our cycle tour. I had this for lunch. It was very nice.

And Kazuko had this.

Then we went for a ride along the river.

Lovely weather today.

I tried some self-portraiture.

See – I’m not going bald.

Still riding along the river.

On the way home we looked in at a bike shop where Kazuko has spotted a bike she likes.

Nice little modern fenders, aren’t they?

Three posts in a day – how about that? Tomorrow we are getting ready for our two-week cycling tour, which start on Thursday. During the tour, I shall be doing my best to update the blog but I have no idea how often I’ll be able to get free wi-fi during our travels. I shall do my best.

4 Comment on “and since the weekend…

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