Tales from Japan: "One-man Trains"

Our group is on a local train bound for Nakatsugawa, on the JR chuo-line. It’s one of the many local lines running across Japan, following the ancient Nakasendo connecting the imperial capital, Kyoto, to the shogunate in Edo during the Edo…

Tales from Japan: 90 years on the job

The screen door slid open, inviting a blast of cold air that was tempered by the warmth of the charcoal burning slowly in the middle of our hut. In came an old lady, carrying a heavy-looking plate of chicken that was to be part of our menu…

Tales from Japan: Packing Backpacks

We are about to go on a new adventure. Bernard, my other Roaming Backpack, together with four more merry backpack(er)s who have gracefully agreed to forsake suitcases ­– their usual choice of comfort – are joining me on “roaming”…