Grandvrio Hotel Tokushima
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... which was very entertaining as the girl who won couldn't stop laughing!
After dancing out of the hall, we went to investigate the anime festival. This was interesting to a certain extent, but it was entirely in Japanese and there were very few animes featured that we actually recognised, so at times it was difficult to tell what was going on and what we'd be interested in with our limited reading skills.
The path I took wound through the countryside, took you through small towns, alongside orange groves and along a lot of roads. This walk would be more fun with more countryside, but this is a crowded place. People are friendly on the route and can be identified by their white tops and walking sticks with bells on. I saw a dread locked guy with what seemed like hundreds of bells pacing through one of the temples. He seemed very cool and self possessed.
It took ...
... gorge run by a super nice guy and his vegan cooking wife. It was great hanging out with the other guests and getting to know the staff. I took a bus out to the famous bridge and I was lucky to get there before the crowds. It was cool, but then what? You really need a car to get yourself to a trailhead. I tried walking on the road, but the trucks made it no fun. So I found a cool restaurant hanging over the ...
... town where we were stranded.
We eventually did make it to takamatsu and, as it was getting late, we made another mad dash to fit in a trip to Ritsurin park. At this point we were still lugging our big backpacks around, but unfortunately, when we got to the park we couldn't fit our packs into one locker. As we were too cheap to pay for two lockers we settled for carrying them with us! Ritsurin park has 2 walking trails, one is 60 minutes and the other is ...
... But then there's the other side who grows with every step. Who beats all the things I just pointed out. It's the side who conquers the mountain, and the pain. It's the side who doesn't give up no matter what! It's the feeling that has been lost to me for so long. And I'm rediscovering it. Reclaiming the faith in myself. This is why I set out on this pilgrimage. It is not the temples - it is the path that leads to them.. The journey. Spiritual mumbo jumbo you ...