Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Kareigawa Walk, Part 2

(Open cover to access fire truck.)

In the Kareigawa station building, I tried looking for a schedule, and found something that looked timetable-ish, showing that the train would only be arriving at the station 5 times a day. Originally, my intent was to hop the train and ride a few stations in both directions before returning. But, since the next arrival wasn't apparently for another 1.5 hours, I turned around and prepared to go back to the airport. But right next to the road was a banner that read "ranchi" (lunch), and I hadn't seen anything that looked like a restaurant.

(Other side of the tracks and about 5 blocks from the station. The restaurant is in with the buildings on the far right.)

Turning around, I followed the street past the houses and small shops to the point where it crossed the tracks and ran another couple of blocks along some farms. Another lunch banner flapped in the wind at the end of a driveway to one of the houses, and a nearby lot had 4 cars parked in front. As I was about to enter the house, which obviously looked like a Japanese-style restaurant, I heard a very faint, but distinct sound of a train crossing bell. Since the schedule indicated that nothing was expected to arrive so soon, I was torn over trying to run back to try to get a photo of the passing train.

(One way to run a pipe over a creek.)

Then again, the sign said that lunch was between 11:00 and 2, and it was 1:15 right then. Going back to the house, I stepped inside. The woman running the front half was very friendly and pointed me to one of the 8 tables where you sit on the cushion on the floor. The prices for the set meals were between 800 and 1000 yen ($10 to $13 USD). I decided on the chicken katsu set, for 900 yen.

(Welcome to Kakou.)

After a while, the food came out. It was beautifully prepared, very tasty, and a lot of it. At the end, the hostess gave me a cup of hot coffee, and then I was back out on the street.

(Clockwise, from top right: Hot tea, onion and bread soup, miso and tofu soup, Japanese pickles, rice, chawan mushi, main dish. The main dish contains - chicken cutlets, garden salad, potato salad, a slice of orange and a strawberry for dessert. I love chawan mushi, and the strawberry was really fresh and juicy. Two thumbs up.)

Nearby was a path that cut over a creek and then across the tracks before going into the woods. Hoping that this would take me to the road heading back into the other side of the town, I followed it. It was a nice little walk, and after 10 minutes I was back at the station. Just in time for the track crossing alarm to sound again.

(The sign to the left is really weathered and hard to make out. It says "no cars".)

(Old woman pushing a shopping stroller on her way back home.)

(This building caught my eye because of the diamonds painted on the window covers on each side.)

To be continued.

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