Monday, September 1, 2014

The Endless Summer comes to an end

All good things must come to an end, at least until next year. With that in mind we decided to spend the weekend in Izu to close out this year's Summer season. 

As we worked our way to the southern end of Izu peninsula I noticed this fellow guarding the entrance to a small bridge.


They don't make bridges like this anymore - they only tear them down to make new ones.

A simple design that is pleasing to the eye.

Here we are in Shimoda with "the one that didn't get away"

The back streets of Shimoda are filled with charming old houses; many have been converted to restaurants, tea houses and shops.

This is where we had lunch - it has quickly become one of our favorite restaurants in this area of Izu.

At last we arrive at the beach. We had intended to go swimming but with the cooling of the weather and the lack of sunshine we settled for walking and just getting our feet a little wet.


After spending some time walking the beach we headed for Inatori, where we'd be spending the night. Along the way I stopped by a roadside vegetable stand and while Emi did some shopping I went across the street and watched a  fisherman enjoying his Saturday.

Inatori has the nicest walkways along the coast. After we checked into our Inn, we went for a walk to enjoy the ocean view.

And, we wound up at a small Izakaya where we enjoyed drinks and local seafood.

The cooks work behind the counter preparing our food.

The walls are lined with the menu items.

While we were there business picked up with several other couples stopping by for the good food and drinks.

By the time we finished it was already dark out. The lights of the other hotels and Inns lit the way for our return to where we were spending the night.

The next morning after breakfast we went to the local fish/farmers market. While Emi shopped I strolled around the waterfront.





One last look at our hotel and then we were off to Atagawa where we'd be spending Sunday night.

The east coast of Izu peninsula is laced with rivers flowing into the sea.

We needed to get a little exercise, use our bodies, stretch our legs, and so forth. So, we parked the car and started walking the coast.

After walking for about an hour we arrived at the beach in Atagawa.

Despite the cooler weather people were out enjoying the last official day of the summer beach season.

This looks like a worthy retirement plan to me.

Emi enjoys the view and the ocean breeze.

Pony tailed girls and the end of the endless summer.

However, we had to hike back to where we parked the car so we could return with it to Atagawa.

When we returned it was just in time to see the local life guards having an open ocean race. These boys and girls are in excellent shape.

Meanwhile a small boy faces his fears.

While the mother looks on in case the ocean decides to show him who's really the boss.

Surfs up!

Surfs down!

Nothing like the joy a father and son share digging a hole in the sand.

While I was taking pictures of people on the beach Emi was soaking her feet at a free hot spring designed for road weary walkers to... soak their feet.

 This was a good day and a good way to say goodbye to a lovely summer season.

All pictures taken with a Sigma SD1 Merrill camera and either a 30mm or 50mm Sigma lens.

Thanks for stopping by!
Mike

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Get on the bus...

Tired of pedaling around? Then park the bike and get on the bus!


One thing about Japan is that there is no shortage of busses. So, today as I strolled around whenever I saw a bus I took a picture of it.

No bus on this street.


Happy ash trays.

Here we go.

There's no shortage of Taxis in this country as well.

Bicycles are also a popular mode of transportation.

I'm seeing a lot of these pedal taxis, especially on these warm summer weekends.

Now this is a nice retro style bus.

Busing around town is nice but so is the art of sitting on a park bench. One should never take a park bench for granted. Sit down and let the world go by; sip a coffee, read a news paper; let the everyday stresses just fade away.

Of course if the bench is not your thing, head over to the Red Brick outdoor bar and get a Mojito.

Back to the busses.

This is great - a bus in Yokohama advertising Yokohama tires.

The locals are happy.

Last shot of the day. When you see a light at the end of the tunnel, do not walk toward it.

All pictures were taken with a Sigma SD1 Merrill camera and either a 30mm or 50mm lens.

Thanks for stopping by!
Mike