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Month: March 2015

Wrong Way Round – Day 13

Wrong Way Round – Day 13

Day 13 – Iwaobetsu Youth Hostel to Utoro (岩尾別ユース – 宇登呂) – 13km There was a sign in English on the stall door to the youth hostel’s botton-benjo (ボットン便所 / composting toilet) that read, ‘If foreign objects accidentally fall in, please inform a member of staff’. Did this mean, I wondered, that should I accidentally drop my mobile phone down the loo, a member of staff would dive into the cess pool and retrieve it for me? And come to…

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Wrong Way Round – Day 25

Wrong Way Round – Day 25

Hamamasu – Sapporo (浜益 – 札幌) – 90km As I was talking to Mr High Bridge – a student from Ibaraki who had got up at five that morning and cycled all the way from Sapporo – a four-wheel-drive van with monster truck tyres pulled into the convenience store car park. Having jumped down from the driver’s seat, a middle-aged man with an Elvis-like quiff came over for a chat and a cigarette and handed both of us his business…

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Wrong Way Round – Day 27

Wrong Way Round – Day 27

Day 27 – Auto House – Kuromatsunai (オートハウス – 黒松内) 129km When I awoke the only other person up and about was the owner of the Auto House, whose portrait – a Che-Guevara-style image painted onto a large and now faded bed sheet – hung on one of the dormitory walls. Twenty-three years ago, he told me, he had travelled to Australia and stayed at a caravan park. Impressed with the idea of a place to stay that was cheaper…

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