JAPAN DAY 52
Temples 85,86,87. 33km
Total kms walked in Japan 1156. Accumulative kms walked 4809
Tonight we are camping in the car park of the Pilgrims Community Centre. Perfectly position to assault temple 88 first thing in the morning. The mood in camp tonight is reflective, with both of us reflecting on the last seven weeks and the realisation that tomorrow we complete this adventure, an adventure that has been 4 years in the making.
Finishing a trail is a real roller coaster of emotions but I must admit tonight I am at peace with this trail and ready to move forward. Japan has not been easy we have had some shitty days add to that the tension between The Spunky Rooster, it’s been a challenge. However through the whole journey we have kept our resolve to stay true to the trail and pray at each of the temples. Sometimes that has meant standing in front of the temple with legs shaking from fatigue, some days it has meant sitting to recite the mantras and on a few occasions it has meant laying down in temple grounds and recovering before even attempting the ritual. The ritual instilling in both of us a discipline of kind. I have grown stronger with physically and mentally and have at times been surprised and what has emotionally come to the surface. (See my blog on I have a confession to make). Tomorrow we will assault the mountain up to temple 88 and pray to Kobo Daishi one last time, then bid him farewell.
The pilgrimage is over 1000 years old and whilst climbing the old stone pathways over the mountains or entering one of the ancient temples you can feel the history, you can here the voices of past hero's encouraging you forward. 160,000 people a year undertake the pilgrimage but walkers only account for 1%. After tomorrow I will be proud to say I am one of them. With that I bid you goodnight.
HIGHLIGHT: Meeting some fellow adventurers.
LOWLIGHT: It looks like it will rain all night
Grateful for being at the end of this pilgrimage, I am tired and I am looking forward to a break from walking. Grateful that The Spunky Rooster and I are still together after49 days together 24/7 and some little tensions along the way. Grateful to God/Universe/ Budda/ Kobo Daishi for all the experience this trail has entailed.