My plan for today was to head down to Kamogawa and find a place to camp, leaving the mountain pass that connects East to West Chiba for early the next day, when I'll have plenty of time to take it. But I reached Kamogawa at around 13:00 so decided to give it a go today instead. Some bits of it were horrible suffering, but all in all it could have been a lot worse. I made it to the other side with time to spare to leisurely look for a place to camp. I found two sites so far, but decided to cycle on ahead to the ferry place to check out the ferry times for tomorrow, which is where I'm typing this from. Hopefully camping tonight will go ok. It's a beautiful spot with no residents around, but it's also facing a parking lot and tonight's Friday night, so there might be cars coming in and out. We'll see..
If yesterday was about remembering all the crap things about cycling, today was about rediscovering all the good parts. I finally reached proper countryside Japan, with its beautiful roads, valleys and traditional houses. There was hardly any traffic for the whole day so I felt very comfortable, even with music on (but not too loud, of course). The only minuses were the fairly frequent tunnels and the asshole minitrucks who just can't drive for shit, not a single one of them. It seems to be a requirement to be an asshole if you want to drive one of those things. If you're too nice or capable you'll end up driving a bigger truck.
Health-wise I find I am constantly in near hyper-ventilation while cycling. I think my body hasn't adjusted yet to the sudden new circumstances. Plus, I'm a lot heavier than the last time I cycled. But I'm managing, and I did good speed today (for my standards, anyway), even on most of the uphills.
Now I'll head off to eat some delicious conveyor belt sushi, and then it's the ~4km cycle back to the potential campsite. More later!