This morning i woke up very early in my Osaka hotelroom. Probably from an unadjusted bio-clock, but i think also because my toes were freezing off. The night before, i couldn't find the heaterswitch and i was to tired to go and ask at the desk. So i slept with a sweater and trainings suit !
But i made up with an excellent Japanese breakfast. With lots of coffee. Of course !! :)
Before i went to the train station, i quickly slipped into the Seven Eleven behind my hotel. I needed raisers badly because i forgot mine back home. Of course.... :) But how do you (I !!!) find what you need in a supermarket the size of a football-field were everything is written in Japanese and no one speaks just a little bit of English ? Yeah i know, hands and feet, but believe me, it's hard at times, especially when you have a train to catch. But i must say that the Japanese people are very polite and helpful, everywhere you go, even on the streets.
I took a train to Wakayama station, where i had to switch trains to get on the Shingu line. While i was waiting, i saw a European woman asking directions from a station employee on the platform. Don't ask me why, but my feeling told me she was going to do the same thing as i. So i walked straight up to her, asked her if she waited for the same train. Yes. Are you travelling to Taiji ? Yes. From there we didn't need any more clues. We were both cove guardians !!! Her name is Sarah (i asked her permission) Needles to say we had a lot to chat on the way to Taiji ! :)
From the station we were picked up by another cove guardian, who brought us to the hotel. There i met all the other guardians. That too was a real pleasure !! So much to talk about. After we settled in the hotelroom, Melissa and Scott took us for our first visit to Taiji and the Cove. Words can hardly discribe the feelings i had (and still have) seeing all the places i knew for so long from photo's and video's, but now in real live.
Speaking of contradictions. Taiji is a place of unbelievable beauty, but with a black shadow hanging over it.
I placed a photo of Taiji harbour. One that most of you probably have seen a thousand times, but i do it anyway, because this time it is trough my own eyes.
The joy of seeing my fellow cove guardians and the shock i felt when we got into Taiji, the contrast could not be any greater.
I'm going to sleep now, it is late and the alarm goes at 5. Then into the cold to Taiji. Tomorrow more pictures. I hope only of the beautiful surroundings.