Day 19, No Temples (Shimanto city), 30km

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  • Thursday 24 October, 2013
  • Weather: Torrential rain and strong wind, 20⁰C 
  • Temples: None, 30km
  • Accommodation: Pension Shimanto 0880-34-4100, Shimanto City, ¥3,500

The rain was loud and constant all night long and we both kept waking up and looking outside the tent to make sure our pack and things weren’t getting wet under the benches. Neither of us wanted to get up at 5am and walk in the rain again, so we delayed our departure for as long as possible and eventually left at 9am!

We had originally planned to stay in a hut for the night but because of the pouring rain we decided we should book accommodation so at least we would have a place to shower and dry our things once we arrived. I called ahead to a Pension in Shimanto city, about 35km away, and made a reservation.

The rain was heavy and the wind was almost impossible to walk against, it was like the typhoon was upon us already but in fact it wasn’t due until the next day. The walk took us along the coast and the sea looked angry with giant waves crashing over the rocks.

I would have liked to have taken a tonne of photos but my camera was buried deep within my bag trying to stay dry and my phone got drenched every time I took it out of its ziplock bag for even just a second.

The day dragged on for us both and the kilometers just didn’t seem to go down. Not even chocolate was helping to give me energy on such a grey and rainy day!

About 7kms out of Shimanto city, a Japanese lady stopped ahead of me in her car and came running toward me with an umbrella. She insisted I get in her car and she would drive me because of the rain. I was soaked through and didn’t want to wet her nice car but as she said it was ‘osettai’ I couldn’t refuse – you’re not allowed to refuse osettai! Dave was further up the road so we picked him up when we passed him and she drove us to the door of the pension. It was so incredibly kind of her, especially considering the state we were both in. I gave her my bell from Temple 1 to say thank you.

At the pension we were given a stack of old newspapers to put our things on so as not to wet the tatami floor. I had a hot shower then spent an hour using the hair dryer on my backpack and contents that were all very wet.

The typhoon is supposed to hit tomorrow which means another rainy day so we’re planning for a short day of 20km… And then hopefully the sun will shine again 🙂

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