Just another memory from my first trip to Japan. One of the fondest memories I have was one brisk sunny morning in the small town of Kumatori in Osaka (about 1.5 hours from downtown Osaka by train). I woke up at about 6am, which baffled my hosts (I was envious about how late their day started!). My wife and cousin were fast asleep. The day before started with about 5 hours of combined train rides to get to a friends house, followed by a relaxing Onsen (mineral bath), and a dinner in which we stuffed ourselves silly with Sushi, so it was understandable that they’d still be knocked out early in the morning.
For some weird reason though, I was up. My host (and friend) got up about half an hour later, and after some breakfast, he said
“Hey, you wanna go for a bike ride?”
As I stepped outside the sun was rising, casting its golden light across the immaculately clean streets of Kumatori. I found the bike pictured above waiting for me. I gotta say, a leisurely ride through the neighborhood, which included a beautiful park, was an awesome experience. The details, the people, the architecture, the smells and sounds, and the feel of the breeze…all of these are unique to riding through town instead of being walled off in a car or by the hull of a bullet train, and gave me a truly rewarding perspective that I’ll never forget.