Escaping to the Islands

We received the alert that the Asimo robots were on the loose and the authorities needed help in locating and capturing them. http://topekasnews.com/asimo-robot-kills-two-scientists-japan-escapes-laboratory/.

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The rumor was they were headed to the islands, so we hopped on a train through the mountains to see if we might be able to thwart their escape. We first stopped at the Mihara Station where they were having an octopus festival, but no luck.

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We then headed towards the Tadanoumi Port.

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From there, we boarded a boat for Omihima Island. We were afraid that they might have hijacked the liquid natural gas (LNG) boat to create a huge explosion, but our fears were mitigated.

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We then went to the Shinto temple area to check out the 2,000 and 3,000 year old camphor trees that were still living.

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We were concerned they may try to hide in one of them and attack some tourists.

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From there we were able to get a nice view of the Tatara bridge. I only wish we had some more time to go running along that bridge. We will hopefully get a nice run in Hiroshima tomorrow morning.

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OK – dead end on this island. We crossed the bridge and went over to Ikuchi-shima island. We had a nice traditional Japanese lunch and then took a side trip to visit the nearby Ikuo Hirayama Museum of Art in Setoda.

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Ikuo’s art was an interesting story as he was a survivor of the blast in Hiroshima when he was very young and in junior high school.  He then travelled the world and the silk road to experience the sites and Buddhist heritage from around the world.  It was amazing that even travelled to Afghanistan to visit the giant Buddha in Afghanistan before it was destroyed by the Taliban a few years later.

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We then took a hike up the Kojo-ji temple which is a three tier pagoda to see if the robots might be paying homage at that national shrine which has a fantastic view of the Inland Sea area.

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Unfortunately, when we looked out amongst the islands, we saw they were ahead of us and we needed to return to the mainland for any hope catching them.

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We grabbed a ferry back to the mainland and the locals wished us well to get the rogue robots when we left.

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We were so tempted to get the fried octopus for a snack on the train back to Hiroshima.

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Only $10 (US).  What a deal!  Stay tuned for the next chapter…

The one thing we learned today is that pagodas in Japan are the same as Stupas in India and Nepal. The purpose is the same, but the culture and style are different in every country. Learn something new every day!

 

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