I woke up early. We went to bed at 10, I slept my 8 hours and got up. Everyone else slept in just fine, the apartment was dark and cool and I had the whole morning to get caught up on the blog and plan our day trip to Fukuyama. In case you are concerned this is no where close to Fukushima where the nuclear disaster went down. In fact it would be a 12 hour car ride from one city to the other.
Luckily it is only about a 15 min train ride from KK’s apartment to Fukuyama.
Heath got about 10 hours of sleep and Grant right around 12. They showered and ate cereal for breakfast. I had a bunch of green tea and dinner leftovers early then had an egg sandwich. We did a load of laundry and got it drying on the porch. It was lightly sprinkling so we grabbed the rain gear and headed out.
We had about 7 stops between Shin-Kurashiki and Fukuyama. The trip went perfect we got tickets boarded the train and got off right were we were supposed to. We had planned to listen for our stop but could not understand anything said and just had to watch the signs and the GPS on my phone. We picked Fukuyama because right next to the train station was a castle and one of my favorite restaurants.
We headed to the castle first.
It was on top of a big hill with big rock walls all around it. It was not baby car (stroller(baby car is seriously the Japanese word for stroller)) friendly at all.
We wondered around the bottom for a while before giving up and just carrying the stroller up. There were lots of historical buildings and gates and things on top of the hill but the castle was the coolest.
We parked the baby car out front, paid about $2 and headed up. There was an information page in English but everything else was not. The castle was a bunch of floors of artifacts and stuff. We saw samari swords and outfits and artwork and old tools and stuff. No pictures were allowed. We slowly worked our way upstairs. At the top we could take pictures of the city below.
Heath fed Lily and we cooled off in the breeze and admired the view.
Then we headed downstairs and walked around looking around some more and taking pictures.
I was getting pretty hungry so we made our way to the other side of the train station and got some lunch.
On my last trip to Japan Kentaro and I lived on gyudon and I was anxious to try some again. It is a really cheep big bowl of rice topped with thin strips of beef and onions. There is a little bit of sauce also. I was prepared to try and order by speaking Japanese but the menu had pictures on it and we took the easy way and pointed to what we wanted.
It was just as good as I remembered and everyone ate really well. Grant could only finish half his rice so I got one and a half. Then we headed out to walk off some lunch.
We had a long walk from the station to a temple and we were not really sure of the way but we found it just fine and probably ended up taking the most simple and direct route. As we crossed a river we knew we were doing it right.
Once we got close the streets were really narrow and there was no sidewalk. It was scary with the kids but we were too close to turn around.
We don’t know much about the temple but it was cool to explore.
We did know to wash our hands first.
and to pay change into the little bins.
The temple was bright orange and cool.
We climbed up to the 7th floor (top) and admired the view.
We hung out for quite a while and relaxed and let the ladies smile and ogle Lily. It was getting late so we headed back toward the station.
On the way we made a pit stop right away to change and feed Lily and it happened to be beside an old graveyard.
We walked for a while and came to a giant mall and decided to head in for a bit. We did some shopping but tried to hurry, also our feet were pretty worn out so didn’t wonder too much.
We left the mall and headed to the train station and bought our tickets and made our way to the train. We got a seat and relaxed the 30 or 40 minutes back to our station.
We walked a few blocks to the apartment and relaxed with some saki and computers. Kentaro and Chiaki came home and we walked the other way a few blocks to a restaurant.
We sat down and looked at a menu. Beers were about $2 and dinner was about $20 for adults but it was all you can eat and cook.
Our table had a grill built into it and the waitress fired it up. We got some beers and a little bit later a bunch of raw beef came out in a couple different cuts.
We got busy cooking, dipping the meat in some tasty sauce and eating it up. We ordered plate after plate of beef, pork and chicken in different marinades and cuts. There was also garlic cloves, onion,corn and bean sprouts.
It was an exciting frenzy of drinking cooking and eating. Grant was loving it.
We had 2 hours to order as much as we wanted to after a while we slowed down and did some stretching and talking. Once we had a little room we ordered some more and got back to eating.
After we could hold in no more steak we squeezed in some ice cream.
We paid and rolled ourselves out the door. We got a picture out front then walked home.
It was a late dinner so Grant got in bed and the rest of us followed shortly after.