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Crossing the FINISH LINE with personalized towels!

Day 17: Imabari

sunny 21 °C

Temples 60, 64, 61, 59

ホストファミリーのお姉さんは車で愛媛の最後のお寺にうんてんした。60番の横峰寺は山にあって山の道はすごくあぶないだったら、タクシーでお寺に行った。でもすごく高いだった!タクシーは八千円にだった。さいふが狭いにちゃった。でも、午後五時の前にお寺にぜんぶ行きたいからタクシーに行く事が大丈夫だった。

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午後12時ぐらいに始めるのお寺に終わって、すきやにメッチャ安いどんぶりを食べた。すごく安いだけど、あまり美味しくなかった。あとで、61番の香園寺に行った。お寺はぜんぜん古なかった。香園寺のデザインはモダンでモダンぽいと思った。

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最後のお寺は国分寺だった。最初にお姉さんは国分寺へ行くつもりだけど時間がないから行けなかった。でも、今最後のお寺は国分寺で本当に丸のように行った。天気は晴れで、さくらが満開で、しずかで、すばらしい気持ちがあった!全部が完璧だった。お寺のかいだんに上る時になつかしい思い出を覚えた。お遍路したいる時の思い出に思って。やさしい人に会って、こわくて、すばらしい道に歩く行って、色々な所に寝て、日本の色々なカルチャーを習った。国分寺に最後の梵鐘を告げて、最後のキャンドルとおせんこうをおこして、最後のおさめふだにだした。納経所に最後のスタンプを持って、私たちの納経帳をらくせいした!

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写真を撮って、お寺のとなりにいまばりのゆめいなタオルを売っている店があった。店主はやさしくて、タオルをあげた!そして、タオルに私たちの名前をぬいつけた!最後のおせったいを貰った!やった~!メッチャうれしかった!

後でアイスクリームを食べに行った。

お遍路をする事が多としている。だいしさんといっしょに色々な所へ行って、いっぱい友達に作って、たくさんレッスンを習った。もっとゆうきがある人になった。

みんなさん、本当にありがとうございました。

English
Oneesan drove us to the last remaining temples around Matsuyama. The first temple was up the mountains and oneesan didn’t want to drive her car up on the narrow mountain roads, so we had to take the taxi. It cost 8000 yen, which hurt our wallets, but time was precious and we needed to finish the remaining temples by 5 pm.

We finished the first temple by noonish and went to Sukiya for lunch. They sell very cheap donburi for 250 yen, but it’s not high quality beef. It didn’t taste as great as the advertisements suggest, but you get what you pay for. Afterwards, we went to temple 61, which had a very modern feel to it. It definitely didn't seem like it was built 100 years ago.

Our last temple was Kokubunji, which was the temple we didn't get to in the very beginning when oneesan drove us. But now, we are ending here. It seemed like we’ve went around a full circle. The sun was shining, the cherry blossoms were in full bloom, everything was quiet and peaceful – it was just so…perfect. As I walked up the stairs leading to the temple, I reminisce the events that happened throughout this pilgrimage. The wonderful people I've met, the roads I've passed, the places I've slept at, and the culture I've immersed myself into these past two weeks. We rang the bell one last time, lit our last candles and incense, and made our final wish. There was a mix of feelings – happiness, sadness, pride, disbelief, and amazement. I can’t believe we’re actually finished with the ohenro trip. A pilgrimage my sister once told me, something the old me would never think of accomplishing.

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We received our final stamp and completed our nokyocho! Afterwards, the man who sells towels at Imabari gave us towels with our names on it! (Imabari is famous for their towels). We went to get ice cream at a nearby shop at the beach.

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It’s amazing how much Daishi-san has taught me during this trip. I am so thankful for the friends I’ve met during the trip. I can’t wait to meet them again someday. One of the most important gift I received was courage and bravery. I am willing to take more risks and not be afraid of the unknown. The old Melissa would never bike to 88 temples, take initiative to meet new people, and travel out of her boundaries. After this ohenro trip, Daishi-san will continue to be travelling with me. I plan on doing the pilgrimage one more time, but via walking. That way, I’ll be able to get the full experience.

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This is something you can never learn from textbooks.

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KEY POINTS:
1) It's a wonderful feeling after you finish.
2) Taking the taxi is VERY expensive if you plan to travel far.
3) Imabari has a towel museum! (How random and cool is that?!)

Posted by thewongway 11.06.2012 22:21 Archived in Japan

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