Normally in Japan we go straight from the airport to Beautiful Wife’s family but this time we decided to go for a quick tour first, which is why ended up wandering through Takamatsu looking for a ferry on our first afternoon. After trekking around and through several buildings and almost visiting an art gallery by mistake, we come around a corner about 500 metres from the railway station and there is the ferry terminal.

The ferry is just leaving.

We wait for the next one in the company of some schoolchildren and an old lady bringing in the shopping. Feel slightly envious of people who get to do this every day, especially when the ferry turns up and we wind our way through several smaller islands to get to Shodoshima. When we get to the port there is a bus stop but no bus, and one taxi. Beautiful Wife asks the driver the fare to our hotel, but he tells us just to call the hotel instead, because they will pick us up with a mini bus for free. Seven minutes later we are on our way to the ‘Angel Road’ hotel.

There are several reasons I couldn’t live in Japan for long. The Xenophobia, extreme pressure to conform, and the unpleasantly ugly cities would drive me mad after a while, but occasionally land in a corner where I reckon the advantages could perhaps almost make up for it. Looking out of our bedroom window I think this is one of those corners.

The hotel is named for a natural causeway that connects the beach to a small Island about 500 metres away, which you can cross at low tide. At night the beach is floodlit, “so you can cross even when it is dark” or, as I suspect, because otherwise people will try and cross in pitch darkness and the management don’t want bodies washing up on shore at breakfast time.

After the evening meal we wander across with a lot of other people to the small island with a tree festooned with small hearts. We refrain from making a heart, but do make a romantic, if oddly shaped shadow picture on the cliff.

We end the day with fireworks. We fail to light the complementary pack from the hotel, but fortunately a large group further along has more fireworks, and more success.