This afternoon I decided to go for a hike around the nearby lake Toya. All the way round is about 36km, which would have been fine, but doing so would have meant missing the last bus home, and the extra 15km that this would have added would have been pushing it. As such I settled for strolling halfway around the lake and then walking back to the farm, all in all around 20km. The weather was beautiful, and the scenery exquisite, although quite what the locals made of a random Gaijin walking down the winding country road is anyone’s guess. The fact that I also happened to be reading a textbook and practising my Japanese aloud whilst ambling along probably didn’t do much to alleviate any fears.
One thing that has been playing on my mind recently is the issue of what to do when the phone rings and no one else is in the house to pick it up. There have been a couple of instanced where I have been tempted to pick up the receive and declare: ‘Hello Sasaki residence, Sam speaking how can I…. *mind goes blank*…. Ever noticed how vegetables in Japan are way more expensive than they are in the UK?’, however after broaching the subject with Mrs. Sasaki I am glad that I have as yet left that particular itch unscratched. Allegedly around this time of year many people ring the house asking if the family would like to buy gold (a reason was given but not understood), therefore Mrs. Sasaki, quite rightly, is slightly worried that in my haste to appease the caller I may accidentally sign the family up to a quantity of bullion that would make Fort Know blush. We are yet to discuss traveling salesmen, but unless the family is in the market for a warehouse full of vacuum cleaners I imagine that the response would be very much the same.