The Shinkansen is an amazing thing. Today was my first time riding it alone. It really is ridiculously fast and smooth. And EXPENSIVE. For some reason there were no non-reserved seat carriages, so I had to buy a reserved seat ticket. Much money was spent, but then you do get 3 hours of pure SPEED. With even more money going towards the business hotel foundation today I am strongly considering finding a camp site in Tokyo for a week or so. But the weather has turned extremely sour: it's been raining all day, muchly.
I'm sad that the cycling part of the trip is over. Well, mostly over, because I still have to get to the airport, and my preferred way would be to cycle there. Cycling means no hassle with carrying luggage into a train or entrusting a third party to potentially break it in transport, while costing you money. But I'm glad that I stopped when I did. The next week would have been terribly depressing if I still had to cycle back, and taking a break week wouldn't have made sense either. I can pretend all I want that it's always spring, but eventually the rainy season will start and the cycling season will end.
The question of whether I regret stopping has popped up in my head. I like to roll it around in my mind because I know that I regret nothing. When you're traveling alone you can follow your whims and do whatever feels right at the moment. There is no hesitation needed and no awkward feelings about the choice you made, unless you already know that you made the wrong one. In this case there was no hesitation in my mind and no insecurity after making the decision. Everything still makes sense. I can see the path through this part of my life extremely clearly, and I can see many potentially good paths happening in the aftermath, when I get back to the UK. It's easy to lose sight of where you're going if you're focused on your job all day every day. A very cute girl once said: "adaptation is part of travel". I'd like to contribute to that with: "traveling creates perspective".
That very same girl also said "You'd better do PADI so we can go diving together, or else don't bother to come back!". So I'll be in the Tokyo area a little longer, studying the PADI book and hopefully discovering cheap places to stay in this ultra-urban area. The final stage of the trip has now begun :D.