Day 32: Niigata, Niigata to Sekikawa, Niigata

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I spent most of the day in my head today, which is a shame. In sure the scenery was lovely as I’d purposefully chosen a quiet back road to take me away from the ocean and into the hills, but I didn’t see any of it.
Unfortunately my day was dominated by some emails that really stirred me up. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t stop thinking about them. I got to Sekikawa without even realizing.
Then the fun began: looking for a campsite marked on google maps I headed up the road looking for a bridge. Pedaled on and up the hill before looking back for a moment and sporting the big red bridge. How did I miss that. Back down the hill, over the bridge and into a little riverside hamlet. House house house inn house house… But no campsite. And it didn’t strike me as the kind of place you’d find a campsite. Checked google again. It moved. Google is so sneaky sometimes. Off I went. Back up the hill I’d been half way up earlier and fine the other side. I crossed a narrow wooden bridge over a lively turquoise river and was greeted by a sign. Campsite right, onsen left. Perfect, everything I need. Oh, except food.
I’ve really made a habit of not buying food when I should and being in a predicament later.
The bath was great. A small outdoor stone tub with Japanese Maples overhead and the sound of the river below. I finally relaxed and while my head was still busy the problem felt less.
Now for food. I pitched the tent first and unloaded my bags. With the new unladen Chari I went back up the hill and back down the other side to the service station if passed earlier. Closed. What? It was 5.30 and the only thing open at the service station daw a free foot spa.
Luckily there was a small off-license style shop which had a few bits. The middle-aged women in the shop sympathized with my lonely plight and donated a small bottle of blueberry juice to my cause.
Back up the hill, back down the other side, eat the food, kill a mosquito, get in the tent. BOOM!
Thunder and lightning so close they shook the ground. The storm is still raging now and the rain still pouring. The tent is just about doing its job but I’m practically sleeping on a water bed.
Let’s see if I can sleep.

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Don’t forget to donate! I will visit the project on Monday!!

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