I ‘m so used to cycling on the road instead of the sidewalk that I just followed the main car road all the way until the tunnel that leads to the fabulous island of Kyushu. When I arrived there I realized that the tunnel was only for cars and I drove all that way for nothing.. I did this 2-3 times before on this trip and previous cycling trips, and it’s always funny to see how Japanese people completely panic when they think that you’re about to take a car/toll road with your bicycle. Last time a guy sitting in the toll booth ran out towards me, screaming “NO NO NO!!!” while making cross signs with his arms. I only wanted to ask directions… This time was Yamaguchi province so I of course was received warmly, and they pointed me to the right tunnel, which was next to the seaside. I only had to climb a bloody huge hill to get there…
I wasn’t supposed to cycle in the tunnel, rather I should walk all the way while holding my bicycle. My bicycle is heavy. After about 50-100 meters I realized that my arms would get very tired trying to balance my bike, so I got up and cycled at a walking pace until the end. And now I’m in Kyushu!
So…. I realized that I didn’t really have a plan. Tomorrow I’ll reach Fukuoka, but it seems to be ‘a Japanese city’, and I’ve already seen plenty of those, so no need to stop there for long. I’m at a family restaurant now planning my route for the next 1-2 weeks. I think I’ll be zigzagging a bit, first to Fukuoka, then approaching Nagasaki from the northwest. After that I want to cross by ferry to Kumamoto prefecture and see Mount Aso, an active volcano. Then I’ll go down the volcano at the east side and reach a little place called Nobeoka on the east coast. From there on it’s a long way down to my final destination, Cape Sata.
I’m staying at a youth hostel today. It’s actually warm enough to camp and although it’s cloudy I don’t think it’ll rain (much). I thought I’d spoil myself a bit and congratulate myself for reaching Kyushu. Yay me. Although perhaps spoiling is not the right word. I just had a conversation with the owner, and he told me “You’d better bring bread for dinner, cause our dinner service is way too expensive”. Obviously the hostel is on top of a hill so there’s no restaurants anywhere close, and there’s no way I’ll climb a hostelhill twice with all my luggage. Bread it is then. Here we go.