Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Alex Goes To Japan 2016 - Sukumo Bound


Song:  Into The Forest

Artist:  Jennifer Thomas


We just got back home after our 8 day trip to Japan
to visit my wife's parents and relatives on the island of Shikoku.
It is the smallest island of the major four islands which make up Japan.

The city in which we had visited their relatives is a small fishing village
located on the South West portion of the island of Shikoku...
and which is named Sukumo.



In this depiction of the island of Shikoku...
about mid way on the Southern shore is the city of Kochi.

This is where we had flown into from Tokyo.

From Kochi...
we had taken a bus to a train station and had 1 train transfer in Nakamura...
and arrived in Sukumo (Southern most point of the island...on the Western shore).

This is the city where we stayed...
and where my wife had grown up.

My wife's father is 82 yrs. old...
and her mother is 77 yrs. old.

Her brother is 49 yrs. old.
His two son's are 18 and 21 yrs. old.

My wife's aunt and uncle are just a little younger than her parent's ages.

In later photos...
you will see them.


I will have to make many articles of our trip...
as there are many photos
(Most of the photos I am using, I had taken.
Where I am using my wife's photos...
I will designate them as her's beneath each one).


A couple of interesting facts about Kochi...
besides being the capital of the island of Shikoku...
there were two very famous political figures from there.

One was a Samurai from the 18th century
(who later became a Ronin and a revolutionary).

His name was Ryoma Sakamoto
(Kanji spelling is Ryuma...meaning Dragon Horse).

He was a key figure in the final overthrow of the Shogunate system in Japan.
He also helped drive the modernization of Japan...
especially of its Navy.

He is also known as the father of the modern Japanese navy because of this.

The NHK drama life story of Ryoma Sakamoto is now playing 
for free on HULU.



The second famous political figure from Kochi 
is Shigeru Yoshida.

He was the Prime Minister of Japan from 1946 to 1947...
and from 1948 to 1954.

There were statues at the Kochi airport of these two men.



As we had to make many transfers to and from our final destinations...
and we had layovers in some areas...
our trip there took over 24 hours...
and our trip back took over 31 hours.


From Reno Airport...
we had a short flight to San Francisco Airport.

After a couple of hours...
we caught our flight to Narita Airport in Tokyo, Japan.

From there...
we had to take a bus to Haneda Airport in Tokyo, Japan...
for our flight to Kochi Airport on the island of Shikoku.

We then had to take a bus to a train station for our trip to 
Nakamura Train station...where we had to take another train 
to Sukumo Train station...where my wife's father and mother had picked us up...
at about 12:30 AM local time.




Reno Airport.

As we had an early flight...we had arrived at the airport at approximately 4 AM.



Our plane to San Francisco.



The plane was de-iced...
and we were ready to fly.



We arrived at San Francisco Airport.


Alex was tired.
He had been too excited to sleep the night before our trip.


After a short layover (3 or so hours)...
we boarded our 747 to Japan
(Narita Airport - Tokyo, Japan).


This 747 - 400 had narrow seats...
little leg room...
and no personal entertainment systems.

On our way back...
we were on a 777 with wide seats and a plentiful amount of legroom...
and with complete individual entertainment systems 
built into the backs of each seat.


We were flying out over the ocean here from San Francisco Airport.


We were near Japan here.


We were nearing Tokyo Airport here.


Our arrival at Narita Airport in Tokyo.


We had to retrieve our bags and take a bus to Haneda Airport for our flight 
to Kochi on the island of Shikoku.



We arrived at the Haneda domestic terminal
(the International terminal is a bus ride away).




Our plane to Kochi.


We then had to retrieve our bags and take a bus to Kochi Train Station.


On the bus...
I couldn't help but notice these attached folded seats.

I could only assume they were seat modifiers for small children
(similar to car seats).




Some colorful buildings in Kochi on our way to the train station.


Kochi train station.


We bought our tickets...


and boarded our first train.


Nakamura Train station...
where we simply walked across the platform to board our Sukumo bound train.



Our final train ride to Sukumo.


My wife's parents met us at the Sukumo Train station.

My wife's parents are very friendly and happy country people.

Both are still very active...
especially her father...
who, at the age of 82...
still drives, and goes ocean fishing in his boat...
almost daily.

This is one of the keys to living a great life...
finding and pursuing your passions in life.









2 comments:

  1. Welcome back, Shiroi! I look forward to reading about your entire trip. That first day was quite long and must have been exhausting. Nice to finally arrive and be with family. Your wife's parents look very happy to see Alex.

    ReplyDelete
  2. It was a very wonderful trip. Alex did very well under our travel schedule. Although we lacked sleep during our travels, we ate well. So, everything went smoothly.

    ReplyDelete

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