Last weekend I took a local train to my neighboring prefecture Yamaguchi!
I was planning on visiting my buddy Steve and not much else, but it turned into an extremely awesome and eventful weekend!
So Friday after work I settled down for a 3 hour ride from Hiroshima City to Shin-Yamaguchi Station and read Book 1 of my Japanese Pedagogy correspondence course, which I get to take for free, thanks to my office and CLAIR, the people who organize the JET Programme. Needless to say, the subject of teaching Japanese makes for a slow read, so when I woke up, I was already across the prefectural border, and I went back to reading.
The next morning we woke up and went to Tsunoshima, an island on the Sea of Japan, but the beach (which you had to pay to use!) had too many people to snorkel and too few people to enjoy we went back to the mainland side and snorkeled under the famous bridge to the island. This was my first experience snorkeling and I have to say, it was pretty amazing. This summer, finally, I have been really taking to the water, and loving everything about being the ocean. After exploring the private beach of the neighboring hotel and being confused for customers by the staff, we decided to book it before our cover was blown and we went to another beach with some small waves. I tried my hand at body surfing but mostly just ended up getting a lot of salt-water up my nose. It was still fun, but washing up from that I started to suspect I might be getting sick.
The next day Steve and I woke up late and drove back out to Hagi for a BBQ! James had bought a bunch of meat and some veg and Shak (i think) provided the grill. The BBQ was in a park by another beach, but when I woke that morning I knew for sure I had a cold, so I ended up not even setting foot on the sand. We DID however play cricket, touch rugby, throw a frisbee, and eat like kings.
To finish off the day, we went to an Onsen. This hot spring was especially nice and came with a hand-towel souvenir. It had tons of different pools, most of which were outdoors, to soak in and the sauna was the perfect temperature for me (89 degrees Celsius). Afterward, I felt great, and clean, but the next morning I woke up around 2 hours early, feeling like crap from what was obviously a full-blown head cold.
There was a redeeming aspect to this however. Some friends and I have been trying to come up with a plot for a horror film and in the time I laid there trying to sleep, i ended up imaging a great plot, so I hopped online, typed it up, and mailed it to the other players. Let's hope that becomes something worth blogging about later =D