Back from Iwate

No fishing for me this time (only work) but lots of fish, including this Satanically delicious triumvirate (ohtoro, akami, chutoro) of Sanriku maguro, to be had at a local kaiten-sushi restaurant.

Iwate remains probably my favourite place to visit in all Japan (of course if you have been reading my blog for a while now you know what happened the last time I travelled to Iwate for a work trip).  By strange coincidence, I was taken to dinner to eat a nice meal of Maezawa-breed wagyu and other things at exactly the same hotel I stayed in on the night of March 11th/12th 2011.  The lobby looked a lot different this time round, including being turned into some kind of chapel (probably for weddings) – in the corner where I slept most of the night there is now a pipe organ.

It was also odd seeing so much other familiar stuff from that day again: the same gift shop at Morioka station where I was standing with the wind-chimes hanging from the ceiling (they gave the first inkling of the earthquake’s strength) and the beam that was bending inwards; the neon sign at the soba restaurant that was smashed, now replaced; the buses lined up outside the station, no longer swinging crazily on their suspension; the taxi company whose car took us to Akita; the professor’s old office and the restaurant we ate our first hot meal in.  I hadn’t been back to Iwate since 2011 but I remember most of it.

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