Monday we again woke up early, not really by choice...The whole village actually has an "alarm" (loud speaker) that goes off at about 6:30...
Since we had some time before breakfast at 8, we took advantage of having a village pretty much all to ourselves without many tourists roaming around.
Breakfast was a lot of different things, even a raw egg, which we both left alone...
The weather was forecast to be overcast with chance of rain.
There weren't many buses running so we were trying to figure out what to do with ourselves until 11-ish.
It was then that the lady of the pension mentioned she was going into "town" at about 9-ish and if we wanted to catch a ride, she would be more than happy to take us.
So, we caught a ride with her, her daughter & grandson, to Fukumitsu.
Fukumitsu is a teeny town along the train line that we needed to catch to get back to Tonami.
After saying our goodbyes, we checked out the supermarket in front of the train station.
We then wandered a little into the town area and picked up some sweets from Sakagami Shokado & headed back to Tonami.
Back in Tonami, we headed to the hotel we would be staying at, Suigetsuro, to leave our things.
It was kind of a weird place, and very teeny.
The elderly guy at the front desk told us to bring our bags up to our room ourselves and that "oh maybe housekeeping hasn't cleaned it yet"...WT?
So, we left our things (half-heartedly) in our-soon-to-be-cleaned-doors-wide-open room and went to check out the Tulip Fair.
There was a free shuttle from the JR Tonami station that took you to the fair grounds.
The admission is 1000 yen but if you rode JR to get to Tonami, you could receive a 300 yen discount ticket, since we had these tickets, we only paid 700 yen each.
The fair grounds were quite spreadout. There was also a huge tower you could go up and see the whole grounds from.
It was nice to check out the different exhibits and we were also glad the weather decided to be nice and blazing though at times it was overcast.
Lunch was from one of the many booths they had in their eating area. I had the shiroebi yakisoba (white shrimp fried noodle)...500 yen.
A bit too salty for me.
While Satoshi chose to have a bowl of black ramen...800 yen. The shoyu is apparently what makes this bowl "black".
I had to stop him from drinking all the soup...
I also had a yogocchi burger...400 yen.
Yogoshi is a local food. Veggies are chopped up and mixed with miso. I think in Japanese cooking it is what we call "miso-ae".
This "burger" was a tasty version of it.
While walking around the fair, we found out that with our admission tickets we could also get into different sights around Tonami for free.
So, we left the fair and hopped on the free shuttle that took us to the Tonami Sankyoson Museum. A community center of sorts. It was a beautiful property.
And then the shuttle took us to Kainyo-en, another community center. This was actually someone's home until recently. While waiting for the shuttle we had a nice chat with one of the volunteers.
Next, the shuttle took us to the Demachi Children's Kabuki Hikiyama Hall. This is where we saw beautiful floats (hikiyama) and the theatre where children perform kabuki.
We realized that we were close to the center of town, so we walked back to our hotel from here.
We checked-in (our stuff was still in our room, whew!) and took a bath in their reserved bathing area.
Dinner was kaiseki-style. All sorts of seafood.
Another long day, but we were happy the weather was cooperative and that we got to see lots of tulips.
Tonami Tulip Fair
Held near the end of April, check their website for more info (Japanese only)