finally, sun. and a lot of it!
just when i had nearly given up hope this year for clear, pleasant days typical of autumn in kanto, that’s exactly what we’ve been getting this week. and it couldn’t have come at a better time– with my son away on an overnight school trip, it was the perfect opportunity to go touring to oku-chichibu (oku, meaning ‘deep’ or ‘interior’), located in the western edge of saitama.
on this day, i headed to takizawa dam, one of chichibu’s four dams and the one i had yet to visit, and nakatsu-kyo, a gorge designated by the prefecture as a scenic region and known especially for beautiful fall foliage. since the last typhoon had just passed, parts of the roads were still wet with puddles and some areas even, with water running from one side of the road to the other.
around the ootaki region where the dam is located, the leaves had just started turning colors; but the patches of red among the mainly green mountainside were really brilliant, as if the leaves were glowing from within. nakatsu-kyo, however, was a step ahead, with yellow and orange in the mix for an all-out colorful show, as if to make up for last year’s lackluster foliage. i wish every year could be this pretty…!
by the time i turned around, it was already late afternoon. wrapped in the crisp autumn air (turning colder by the minute!), i watched the sky color and fade and give way to the rising moon as i made my way back home.
no rush, no checking my watch. touring without a time limit.
to me, it was the ultimate luxury.