Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Nice Rural Barbeque

Today was a nice sunny Sunday, and as it is finally starting to warm up around here, there have been quite a few outdoor activities. This time, a large part of the English teaching community in Sano and Ashikaga all went out and had a barbeque. We were somewhere north of Sano in a place called Tanuma, up in the mountains.

My good friend Gary offered me a ride to the remote recreational site, so I got to spend some quality time staring out the car window at the Japanese countryside.

Dead center in this picture are some carp flags in the wind. This time of year many families hoist these fish up, called koinobori. They are meant to honor the sons of the household.

The barbeque was pretty awesome. It consisted of vegetables and meat all thrown together on a big metal surface. Everyone sat around the food and picked the cooked things off with their chopsticks. One of our friends, Mitsuo, has a butcher in the family, so he brought some good meats for everyone.

Nearby the grills was this cool playground/ninja training camp.

We had a special amount of fun with this. You could pull a raft around on a rope. We did our best to tip each other over. A few of our friends have kids, so they were running about and enjoying themselves too. It was a great day.

This was an unexpected find. According to this sign, our little campground area is in the geographical center of Japan. Kind of interesting.

A large marker.. marking the center of Japan.

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