03:39 pm, chben
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Now I’m back home, back in Sweden again. The flights went on without any problems and arrived on schedule. On the way home we stopped at a forest to look for some mushrooms (we found two small ones). It felt really good to walk around in there, no sounds and no people. The same with the view from the car; no buildings and no people. It actually felt really good. The food my mother prepared for me was the best. Nothing beats mom’s cooking. 

This will be the last update for this blog. Thank you all who’ve read this. It has been a lot of fun. 

Until next time!

11:40 pm, chben

I’ve had my last night in Japan now. Shimada worked hard and called together a good group of people for a last drinking party before I leave for Sweden. (In no specific order) Kong, Motozawa, Aoi, Hikaru, Chihiro, Haruka, Shimada, Meng, Ayaka, Alban, Kato, thank you all for sticking with me tonight (and this whole year). Thank you all (others included) that have made this year unforgettable.


02:00 am, chben

We arranged another (less formal) farewell party for ourselves and our Japanese friends at an izakaya in Kokubunji. In total over 20 people. After the restaurant we went to karaoke. It was so much fun. I’ll let the pictures tell the story this time.

03:11 pm, chben

During the summer season these are about the only things you’ll hear. Hard to spot and a lot larger than you can think.

09:10 pm, chben

We had the best time in Shizuoka (磐田, Iwata to be precise) and I have to send many thanks to Haruka and his family for being so extremely generous during our stay there.

Since we arrived so late the BBQ had already started so after a quick shower we joined in. Meat, freshly picked vegetables from the fields outside their house, 鮎 (ayu) fished by Haruka’s father and more was on the menu. After Mt. Fuji all this food tasted the best, total happiness. I was too tired for any photos though.

The next morning we got an enormous Japanese breakfast before we cleaned up from the day before and packed our things. We decided to do some sightseeing and in the end we went to some famous limestone cave called 竜ヶ岩洞 (Ryuugashidou). After that we got treated to a restaurant (鰻, unagi!) and even received some souvenirs from Haruka’s parents. ありがとうございました!

After the lunch we said our thanks and left for the station. Five (or more) hours on the train later we arrived in Fuchu.

03:45 pm, chben
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After enjoying the sunrise it soon got brighter. We continued upwards and now we were able to the see amazing view from up high (when we got closer to the top the mist got too thick so we couldn’t see anything except what was around us, too bad). It took another two hours or so before the first two of us reached the top. My first time climbing a mountain and I made it. We had climbed for a total of ten hours and I’ve never been so tired in my life. I was almost about to cry when standing by the last gate to the top.

At the top we bought some souvenirs and walked around the crater (Mt. Fuji is an active volcano) for one hour before starting our climb down. One in our group had to go back to Fuchu so we went back separate ways. The rest of us took a route called 富士宮 (Fujinomiya) which is supposed to be the hardest one for climbing up (e g the shortest one) but only take two and a half hours to climb down. It took a bit longer than that for us. We spent eight hours climbing down to the fifth station of that route (with a pretty burnt face for my part as a result). Not many pictures on the way down, I was too concentrated to be tired. When we got down we’d spent in total 18 hours of walking in the mountain without any real sleep (a couple of power naps on the way only, sleeping on stones is actually quite nice).

We’d decided before to go to a friend’s home in 静岡県 (Shizuoka-ken, Shizuoka prefecture) and stay a night with have some BBQ after the climb. Since we were off schedule quite a lot we didn’t arrive there until seven-ish in the evening. 

05:00 am, chben
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I’ve finally been at the top of Japan, at the top of 富士山 (Fuji-san, Mt. Fuji) about 3770 meters above the sea. A worthy end (almost) for my eleven month stay in Japan. 

We went on the bus at around half past five and then had a two hour ride to the fifth station on Mt. Fuji, which is located about 2600 meters above sea level. We walked around the area and bought provisions for the climb and had some dinner before departing at half past eight. Mt. Fuji has a number of climbing trails to the top and when we climbed up we had chosen a longer but not so hard route. A lot of gravel roads and stair-like constructions but during one part in the middle it was mostly rock-climbing. 

When we left it was already dark and after climbing for maybe one and a half, two hours we could see the most amazing night sky. You can’t see that many stars in Tokyo. 

We had has a goal to reach the top of the mountain so we could see the sunrise from there but we didn’t reach it in time, we took a bit too many rests on the way. Instead we saw parts of it (it was kind of cloudy down there) at the 8.5th station, at 3450 meters altitude. Absolutely amazing. 

09:04 pm, chben
3 notes

It’s not glamorous but this’ll be my last meal in my room. All kitchen stuff are packed in boxes and tomorrow they’ll cut my electricity and water.