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  • Writer's pictureTim and Lindsey

The Movie starring Tom… or is it Tim (Day 212)

Sometimes we can get stuck in our heads and last night I created a scary movie starring Tom...or is it Tim?

I woke up to the sound of heavy rain on the roof of the van and weird noises outside. Unfortunately just before we went to bed, I read a notice on the toilet block saying that if it is heavy rain or typhoon storms, there can be flash floods, so don’t enter this zone. What are we doing here? I could hear the wind howling above the noise of the river, it was getting louder and louder and suddenly it circled the van rocking it from side to side. My mind played tricks, I created an epic film, I am sure it would be a blockbuster; Tom Cruise playing Tim and mmmm who should play me? The wind would swirl up and the van would tumble over and over. Bongo the van would bash into trees whilst Tom, I mean Tim would jump into the front and try to turn the engine over. I nudged Tim. “The wind is making the van shake”. “What? Why have you woken me up?” When he came to his senses he asked: “Do you want to drive somewhere else?” The thought of driving somewhere wasn’t very appealing and I noticed that Tim was very calm about the whole thing, so I turned over and went off to sleep. In the morning Tim told me that after I woke him up, the next thing he heard was me gently purring (as he kindly calls my snores) and then the only thing at the forefront of his mind was the wind and the rain. Luckily I hadn’t handed over the baton of him being the director of my epic scary movie. He did eventually fall asleep. We ate our breakfast with a blue sky peeking behind the white clouds, birds singing and loads of butterflies dancing around. We decided to investigate a nearby path and came across a beautiful area by a river pool surrounded by huge boulders. It was so tranquil and such a contrast from last night. We sat watching the many species of butterflies fluttering passed us. This area is the Yoggo Valley up to Mount Nagatadake, the second highest mountain in the Kyushu. It takes 9.5 hours to walk to the peak and as Tim is doing a long walk tomorrow we were not tempted. We just did an hour return walk over the bridge to the end of a track. Beautiful views and very relaxing. We hopped into the car and drove to Yakushima Lighthouse on Cape Nagata. It was deserted and locked up, so we wandered around, admiring the view. As we were about to return to the car we heard voices. It was a Japanese family with 3 young children plus a young European man. It turns out he is from Switzerland, flunked his University degree and so came out to Japan to stay with this lovely family and learn Japanese. His English was excellent even if he thought it wasn’t. It was weird, when he heard that we were from Britain, he raised his eyebrows and said “Oh! British!” with a kind of tut. I wonder what he was thinking. Next to investigate was the Turtle Museum. This area is where Green and Loggerhead turtles lay their eggs most frequently in Japan. Over 500 female turtles arrive on Nagata Inaka-hama Beach between May and August each year. Some studies have shown that after hatching, the Loggerhead turtles swim all the way to the Baja California Peninsula to feed on shrimp and lobster. Crikey, that’s a long way for these little guys to swim! Sadly we discovered that the museum is no more after we’d walked around the area for some time. We did, however, chat with a young couple fishing, there were loads of huge fish swimming against the current. I wonder if these were Salmon and I wonder if they caught any. We walked along a sandy beach with a cordoned off area where the Turtles lay their eggs. As we entered the beach, we noticed a pile of rubbish, so we did our bit and collected pieces of plastic, bottle tops, rope, bottles etc to add to the pile. We arrived in the town of Miyanoura and stopped at the Information Centre. Vincent, a lovely guy from Nice, served us. He seemed to be very impressed with us travelling even though he is a traveller himself. I think people see our age and just don’t compute a middle-aged couple travelling around for months on end. I suppose it’s not the norm, even if it is for us. We shared our experiences and asked about his future trip. He is a hiker and loves cold weather – so is aiming for Alaska and Canada – not my cup of tea! We jumped onto wifi, had a nice cappuccino, Vincent recommended some places to eat and we headed off to find a supermarket. Two supermarkets later we had our supply of breakfast and lots of snacks ready for Tim’s big hike, my small hike and relaxing in Bongo. Plus Tim bought a new pair of pants – Hurrah – no more smelly inside out ones! We drove to Vincent’s recommended eating place, parked the van to discover that we had driven over a snake! Eek – I didn’t realise there were snakes here. I wonder if it is poisonous – need to do some research once we have wifi. Dinner comprised of a delicious, hot Ramen each, such wholesome and cheap food, just what we wanted before our long drive up the very steep and windy road to park ready for the epic walk tomorrow. I am so glad that it was a clear evening and the clouds hadn’t descended on us. Some of those drops on the side of the road were pretty steep. There was just one empty car in the carpark. We got our bed ready and, as there were no lights in the toilet, Tim chaperoned me to them – I am such a scaredy cat at times! Just as I was doing my abolitions, I could hear Tim talking to someone. I quickly made myself decent and walked out to find a young Japanese guy who had only just finished the long walk and was now going to drive down those steep and windy roads in the dark! Good grief! We do hope he got down to the bottom ok.

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