When the previous evenings rain had simmered I’d found myself a small park to hold fort in for the night. With rain in tow it was a mild enough night, yet I still slept uneasily. As I was packing my gear away at dawn I was greeted by an old man and his poodle. I can’t claim to understand everything he was asking me just as when any person speaks to me in Japanese, but can only assume roughly what it was he might have been asking me and then reciprocate by telling the individual vaguely what it is I think that they might want to hear. It’s a bit hit and miss sometimes but it normally works out for the best. I told the old man my story in hideously broken Japanese and he seemed to enjoy my yarn. So much so that he disappeared around the corner for a couple of minutes and came back with the biggest can of Pepsi I had ever seen. Seriously, it was the size of a newborn calf, the thing must have been decommissioned in the late 80’s and was part of a batch of very elusive stock. I felt privileged as he offered me the can along with some smokes, I accepted the Pepsi and declined the smokes. He then squatted with his pooch in his arms and watched curiously as I sweated over packing all my gear away.
As my tent was saturated by the night’s rain it was a tricky procedure trying to pack it all away without getting soaked myself. Thankfully for my Japanese audience traditional British slapstick comedy was a hit. He wouldn’t be seeing an idiot like me for a very long time so if I can put a smile on the old chaps face in exchange for the biggest can of Pepsi Eastern Asia has ever bared witness too, then naturally I’m only happy to oblige. After everything was in order I said my farewells to Yoshimitsu-san and Poopoo-chan and set forth in the direction of Kimitsu in order to take on the Boso Skyline. For the 3 hours or so it took me to get to Kimitsu the rain had been gradually getting heavier and heavier. And hence on this day I would not be traversing the Boso Skyline, any attempt would have been nothing short of sheer tomfoolery. The day was essentially a dead duck, and with clearer skies due tomorrow across the peninsula I had to find myself somewhere to bunker down for a while and wait it out.
I ashamedly found a McDonalds to take refuge in, and at 10am they were only serving breakfast, I wouldn’t wish a McDonalds breakfast upon my worst enemy so I would have to go on a hot drink binge until such a sentence was passed. ‘Hotto Chocolati onegai shimasu,’ I asked. Hot Chocolate please. The young lady looked at me as if I had just done a shit in her hair. Remembering the word for ‘Hot’ I rephrased my order for my next instalment of terrible Japanese. ‘Atsui Chocolati onegai shimasu.’ Her face shifted awkwardly as she searched for some sort of resolve. She blushed and began pointing at the menu on the counter before me, she started to speak before some old crow popped up. She appeared to come from under the counter, from some place cold I should imagine.
‘Nai’. No she abruptly told me. Her attitude almost communist in nature, she looked disgusted to make my acquaintance, an attitude I couldn’t entirely trust. A McDonalds with no hot chocolate, was this really a McDonalds? I smelt a conspiracy. ‘Kohi onegai shimasu,’ I changed my order. Coffee please. The old crows face converting into a scene of sheer delight, a sudden warmth came over her, she was no longer a crow, she was an elegant dove. Her younger colleague found her voice. I paid my dues and retreated to a quiet corner, mildly confused as to what had just taken place. I whipped out my laptop in order to find out why McDonalds in Japan doesn’t do hot chocolate. Instead I would find out that McDonalds in Japan doesn’t do WI-FI either, my life was in turmoil.
13oC, overcast and drizzily, cold
Today – 29.3 miles
ODO – 259.4 miles
Total Run Time – 27:35