Niigata - The fifth step ... the length of Japan. - CycleBlaze

September 15, 2018

Niigata

We had to move hotels today which meant we would have to find something to do between check out at ten o'clock and check in at three o'clock.

Thank goodness there was a mich-no-eki right next to last night's hotel so we spent a few hours there, first at the fish market and then watching a "Peruvian" band (me) and doing a bit of work while sitting on a park bench (Leigh).

Keeping an eye on the fish market.
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More fish market stuff.
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More fish market stuff.
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Whale meat - it made me sad to see this.
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"Peruvian" band.
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Then we cycled down to the next hotel following cycle paths next to the rivers.  We cut to the downtown area to catch up on some of the dance festival.

The dance festival, called"Soh-Odori", is a re-enactment of a festival in which people kept dancing for four days and four nights about 300 years ago. About 15,000 people and 240 groups participate - no wonder we struggled to find accommodation!  About 1,500 procession participants join in the Niigata Geta Dance, a dance of the Edo period that has been revived and in which people wear small Ashida (shoes)

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Check out those shoes !
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Niigata Dance Festival
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Niigata Dance Festival
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Niigata Dance Festival
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Even the kids get involved.
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We checked in just after three and spent the next few hours working like beavers.

Best news of the day was the Springboks beating the All Blacks at the Cake Tin.  An epic battle, apparently, with the Boks holding out 36-34.

Today's ride: 15 km (9 miles)
Total: 2,001 km (1,243 miles)

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