Written by Dan Lewis
Originally from the state of Alaska in the USA, Dan Lewis is a long-term resident of Japan. He has lived in Mie, Ishikawa and Gifu Prefecctures, and currently resides in Nagoya, the capitol city of Aichi Prefecture. Dan is an avid fan of technology and nature - two areas that Japan is blessed with! He loves taking "the road less traveled" and discovering new places.
We headed to Shoren-ji Temple Lake in the afternoon. Fortunately, the weather was nice, and it was easy cruising around the lakeside. The lake offers a great opportunity for a leisurely drive. I was immediately impressed with how calm I felt as I drove around the lakeside. It was almost as if I had entered a giant, natural shrine where I could feel a peaceful feeling envelope me.
You can enjoy the calm quiet of the stillness as you drive around, and over a few points via two large bridges - one blue and one red.
There are a few structures here and there, perhaps some kind of retirement home? Or maybe it was some kind of break area. It wasn’t clear and I soon forgot about it as I took in the scenes around the corner.
There was even a bus stop or two, although, I did not see a bus during my drive around. I wondered if there was any bus service, and for a moment, I imagined a Ghibli-style cat-bus similar to the one featured in the Ghibli movie My neighbor Totoro prancing down the street. Alas, there was no such fantastic creature, but the thought was easy to entertain.
We stopped at one point to fly a drone around the red bridge area. If you are a drone fan, this is an ideal area to fly! It may have been only this day, but with such a gentle breeze, it’s great for even a novice pilot. Great views of the lake, bridge and surrounding mountains make for nice photos and videos.
Just be sure to follow the rules and stay away from cars and people who may be walking about.
The small size of the stone torii made me feel even taller than I am. I have seen several of these torii - both stone and wooden ones, but I think this is the smallest I have ever seen. At least, the smallest one that was meant to be walked through.
I passed through the torii, rang the bell and tossed a coin into the collection box and offered a silent prayer of thanks to whatever deity was protector of this area. Then I was ready to move on.
It was past lunch time according to the clock, and my stomach confirmed this. There was only one thing to do - go inside and see what they had to offer.
It was the perfect area for an afternoon drive, but it would be an equally great area for cycling! I’ll be sure to come back.
-“Arch”, a beautiful log cabin café and restaurant-