Friday, 11 January 2013

Day 21: But wait, there's more to see...

Day 21 (26 Dec) So our last full day in Matsuyama before heading off to Kyoto tomorrow. Today was a combination of doing the ordinary sort of daily chores with Ehime-san, as well as getting in some last minute sights and shopping...always with the aim of getting back to the Dogo Onsen...

Can you spot the difference?
Still, 6.12 (7.12) am today looked remarkably like yesterday. I was getting a little edgy, and news-deprived. Today, new (recycled) Japanese PM Abe was due to announce his cabinet, something I really wanted to see naturally...could I possibly manage a surreptitious glance, somewhere, of the news...? Help!

Ehime-san thought it might be nice to set off to the mountains to one of the ceramics factories. The region is known nationally for its Tobe-yaki plates, cups and similar goods. The factory (and outlet) was about 90 mins a very small car, travelling mostly in second gear topping out at about 50km/h...and a self-confessed bad driver...I had further reasons to feel anxious and nowhere near a newspaper or TV anywhere.

Beginning to pack
We found our way back, and by 6.12pm we were back at the house (safely, though a tad greyer) and one had to begin the task of sorting the packing for the next part of the journey. That was my intention at 6.12pm, though I didn't really get around to it until the next morning. I recall we became distracted by dinner and 'last drinks'. I was very tempted to ask if we could put the news on...but I demurred...

For ladies who lunch...?
There was a slight variation on the onsen visit today too. Ehime-san took us to a hotel restaurant near the Dogo Onsen where for a little extra on the luncheon bill, on could use the hotel's onsen rooms, which fed off the Dogo spring. We were first in at 4.30pm and this bath room had the additional feature of a 'bara-yu rotenburo'...a bath partly outdoors (though sheltered from public view) and filled with roses...and this was the lunch we had to eat to enjoy that experience. I reckon it was worth it...

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