Trev's Thirst for Knowledge
To sate said thirst - part 1 of part 2 of the petit honeymoon series. Coming to you on delayed telecast from the home of football, Sapporo, Hokkaido.
Hokkaido is Japan's northern island, and is not very far from Russia. It kind of surprised me in a way to see that it was so much the same as the rest of Japan in terms of culture and people. I couldn't really detect much of an accent or anything, but maybe that's just my lack of experience.
We landed in Sapporo on Thursday evening and trained it into the city. It didn't seem so cold, but the second we walked out of the train station it hit us. Breathing was suddenly very difficult, and could only be accomplished with lots of coughing. Somebody later suggested this was the air freezing in our throats, but I'm not sure of that one.
The body-high, and constantly falling, snow was a great novelty that never really seemed to get old, unless you were trying to take a photo or something. In that case, what was worse was the freezing cold, which set into your hands as soon as the gloves come off to operate the shutter.
I bet that guy had fun getting his bike out.
We checked in at the "Classe Hotel" just off the main drag before hitting the streets. Our first non-concierge contact with humans was the rare and wonderful Hokkaido snow drunk. An odd beast, it is usually spotted rolling around on its back in ridiculous slow-motion, trying to stand up, like an overturned bug. Even when it manages to get itself back right-side up, the icy ground often ensures another tumble. And another. And another. Common decency and wildlife protection laws prevented me from taking a picture, but it was bizarre and humorous.
Sapporo is the home of the famous Snow Festival in early February, which basically means hundreds of ice and snow sculptures throughout the city centre. These ones are Doraemon and golfer Ai Miyazato.