• Ayako

Nakasendo Starting Day

2017/02/20

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The Tokaido walk has been ended. I do not feel that it was real. It took more than a year to finish, and that makes me feel it was unreal. The other day, I ran for 10 km in the marathon race in my hometown, and I felt a sense of accomplishment soon after I finished. The marathon contest ended only in one hour on the day, and I felt more accomplishment than I felt when I finished a long journey. This sounds contradictory, but this was true. It was also true that we walked through all 516 kilometers from Tokyo to Kyoto.


Although I did not walk at a stretch for 17 days, when I told people that I walked on Tokaido, from Tokyo to Kyoto, they always asked me why I did it and they looked never understood the reason we walk.


It has been a month since we finished the Tokaido walk. My mother wanted to start the next road walk immediately after finishing Tokaido. The roadway walk became a hobby for her. She said that she wanted to to continue this hobby in her rest of life. While my mother walked Tokaido on weekends and holidays, she also completed the Mito highway with my father using the weekends when I wasn’t available to go out with her.


I was available this weekend, and we decided to start walking Nakasendo. The first day was about for 24km from Nihonbashi to Urawa. I remembered that I was so tired as to give up walking after 10km walk from Nihonbashi to Shinagawa on the first day of Tokaido walking. It was very easy to complete 24 km course for us this time.


Beyond Arakawa river to enter Saitama

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日本橋から神田を通り、東から西へ移動するのだが、よく知っている東京の街を軽々と歩けてしまうことが楽しい。おばあちゃんの原宿と言われる町・巣鴨で、早めの昼食にうなぎを食べた。以前来た時と同じように、おばあちゃんのグループが、うな重をしっかり食べている。板橋宿の付近は、小規模ながらも商店街になっていた。訪れたことのないエリアだから、新鮮な気持ちになった。荒川をこえて、埼玉県にはいると、急に景色の感じが田舎になる。荒川は大きく、川沿いの住宅街は静かだった。東海道でもいくつもの川を超えて来たが、川を超えるというのはやはり特別だ。風が強くなること、車の横を歩くこと、空が広いことが、歩いている中でも気分転換になる。写真で振り返って見ても強い印象が残っているのだった。


The Nakasendo goes through from Nihombashi to Kanda, along with the east to the west. It was very enjoyable walking around Tokyo that I knew very well. We had an early Unagi lunch in Sugamo where is so-called “Harajuku for grandma”. Some groups of grandmas were having a big size of Unaju like us. How hungry (young) they were!


In the vicinity of Itbashi-juku, there was a small scale of a shopping area. It was an area I have never visited. Crossing Arakawa river to enter Saitama Prefecture, the scenery suddenly became country-side atmosphere. Arakawa river was wide to cross the bridge, and residence area along Arakawa river was very quiet. Although we crossed many rivers even on Tokaido, crossing the river still gave us special feeling. The Wind became stronger on the bridge, and in most cases, we needed to walk alongside of car roads. The sky was always large, and it also made us feel refreshed.


The first day was about 20 km to Urawa.

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From Urawa, it was quick to come back to Tokyo by train. I understood that Urawa was one of popular residence areas near Tokyo for commuters. From now on, we will go up to north area walking thorough Saitama Prefecture.


#Nakasendo

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