gmhTODAY 25 gmhTODAY April May 2019 - Page 102

Guide, Giorgio, in front of a Nakasendo Way map. Walking the Walk Day One Started in Kyoto Ready, get set. We had a tour briefing and dinner with Giorgio. We enjoyed learning about Japanese customs and etiquette and how to greet and thank our hosts. By the end of the trip, we had mastered “gochisosama deshita” (thank you for the meal). Day Two Hikone, Sekigahara (5 miles) Our warm-up walk day. First, a train ride to the castle town of Hikone, filming location for parts of the 1980 TV series, “Shogun.” A second train took us to Sekigahara to tour the 102 GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN great battlefield that in 1600 ended centuries of civil wars and ushered in the Shogunate period. We overnighted in a traditional ryokan (inn), putting etiquette lessons to the test. Upon entry, street shoes were exchanged for Japanese sandals. Different sandals were worn in the bathroom. After a day of touring we bathed, donned our yukatas (robes) and sat cross-legged on the floor around a kee (low table). Dinner was served donabe style with food prepared in a clay pot over an open fire. Day Three Sekigahara, Mitake, Hosokute (7.4 miles) Walking through rice paddies and rolling wooded hillsides, we arrived in the tiny, centuries-old post town of Hosokute. april/may 2019 gmhtoday.com