Weekend on Mainland Japan

Tuesday, February 18, 2014


Well, this trip was a bit of a disaster. To make a long story short, we flew into Tokyo, rented a car with the plan to make the beautiful four hour drive West to Nagano for the weekend. We never made it there... we got lost, the highways were closed, and the main roads weren't plowed. So not even a foot of snow made the roads impassable. We were so confused - Japan, you get snow every Winter, what was going on?!  We spent 11 hours stuck behind semi trucks. Our phones died, we had no idea where we were. Cam white-knuckled it on ice trying to get us out of that mess. We were literally about a centimeter away a good five or six times from collisions. I needed to throw up after spending the car trip in the back seat, trying to keep John calm. We finally made it back to Tokyo around 2am, spent a day there and got on an early flight back home.

There was good too, though! My husband was absolutely amazing, the entire trip. He stayed calm and patient, cracked jokes, and navigated through the labyrinth of downtown Tokyo with a Japanese GPS while John Shea screamed the entire way!! No, we cannot read kanji. I honestly fell even more in love with him this weekend. I'm thankful too that we were able to laugh together about everything that was going wrong. Disaster trips happen.. they've happened to us before, and I don't doubt that we'll have more. This weekend made us so thankful for all of the amazing travels we've had, for each other, and how the Lord provided for us. It was by the grace of God that we didn't get in an accident, that He provided a place for us to stay, guided us when we were totally lost, and gave us a great afternoon before we left. We stayed in Narita the night before we flew out and stumbled upon the adorable little town. We wandered the main street lined with shops, bakeries, sushi and soba restaurants and darling cafes that led to the Narita temple. We tried chicken on a stick, Japanese sweet potatoes and a warm treat made with natto beans that was actually delicious.


15 comments:

  1. I'm so sorry the trip was less than ideal. I would have been a big old stress ball in that driving situation! But Narita looks lovely, I thought it was just an airport town ha.

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  2. Narita is a cute little town. We ventured out there when we were on a 24 hour layover at the airport. So glad we took advantage of that time. Now we will have a lifetime of memories

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  3. Oh no, I'm sorry your trip didn't turn out as hoped! But it's such a lesson in perspective when we are able to laugh about it and make an adventure out of it anyway!

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  4. Those kinds of trips make the best memories sometimes! At least y'all got to enjoy an afternoon!

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  5. BOO for travel nightmares! BUT - glad you guys were still able to laugh about it and didn't get into an accident!! Japanese GPS sounds TERRIBLE! LOVE YOU!
    lanneybear

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  6. Aw, sorry the weekend was a bit of a bust, but I admire your ambition. I've lived in Tokyo for almost a year and a half and have never had the guts to rent a car. (This makes two weekends in a row that there were highway closures due to snow--it's sure a lot of fuss for just a little snow.)

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    1. Ahhh thank you for sharing that. We assumed that was why they were closed but couldn't be sure since there wasn't even any snow on the ground!

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  7. I am so sorry to hear that the trip didn't go as planned. :( BUT can I just say that this is one of the reasons that I adore your blog (no, not because you didn't have a good weekend *smiles*) but because you are so real and in that your posts encourage each reader to find the joy and love of the Lord that is in everyday. THANK YOU so much for this!! :) It is reason (number 100 hahaha) that I love how your blog touches peoples lives! Thank you for sharing with us and here is to hoping much better trips are in the future sweet lady!! :)
    :) Rebecca

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    1. Rebecca, you are one of the kindest people I have ever met. Thank you for always being so sweet to me!! Love you!

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  8. I recognized these spots instantly -- the only place I have ever been to in Japan (24 hour layover, stayed at a local hostel there). Nice to see it again! Sorry your trip didn't go as planned, though...

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  9. Yes with the lack of plowed roads! I watched the residents go out and with 2ft long shovels and DUST PANS, pushed the snow off the road that was in front of their house. That was the only way their street was going to get 'plowed'. Never once did I see snow plows coming around. I found out that area (Tokyo included) got record snow in 45 years. They normally get like 2-4 inches in February, but they've already gotten about 20, so they have no idea what to do! I'm glad there were bright spots in your quick trip!

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    1. Ok that is HILARIOUS.

      That explains it! Though, where we were there wasn't even a foot of snow and entire cities were going haywire.. I hope you guys are having better weather where you are!

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  10. gosh i hate that your trip didn't go as planned but y'all are just too sweet and precious and positive! i knooooow his stressful it can be to travel with a screaming baby and i SO admire y'all for taking it on stride! last time we attempted long hours in the car with a crying baby there was definitely a crying mommy, too, haha.

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  11. *ps. ugh sorry for all the fun iphone typos!

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  12. God bless the two of you! Glad you made it in one piece and were able to enjoy yourselves a little upon reaching your destination...I can't imagine the stress!

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