02 August, 2013

Our Hokkaido Adventure Day 10

Tuesday 2 July, Lake Shumarinai

Our nearest neighbour across the way (and this was
taken with a bit of a zoom).
The biggest problem we encountered this day was large bees periodically cruising through our annex. It scared our boys tremendously, who’d never seen such large bees. (The bees were probably about two cm long and rather ponderous looking.) As a result we ended up with a bit of gravel in our breakfast porridge when someone panicked. Thankfully nothing worse happened (like the porridge being tipped over). I never did get a photo of one.

This day was a rest day before we packed-up and drove to the northern-most point of Hokkaido and Japan: Wakkanai. Wakkanai was the closest to Russia that we’ve ever been, although we did meet some Russian kids in our last campsite (like us, they live in Japan).
Tending the fire on our lake-front porch.

Skimming rocks.
So we washed clothes, explored a little, and enjoyed some downtime. Thankfully our boys had gotten enough of a hang of camping that the mostly found their own fun, especially playing card and other games, or Frisbee, or just kicking a ball around. Although it was hard to get them out of the tent due to the insects.
We rowed around one of those islands in the middle.
Before lunch we went for a walk. Perhaps that should read, “We dragged the boys out for a walk.” Not all of them paid attention to our instruction to “Use the insect spray.” So they got bitten while we were out. Not a happy family for a bit, but then we found a stoney bank and the lake and they enjoyed throwing stones into the lake for a while.

After lunch I read half a chapter of The Hobbit to them and then we all tried to have some SQUIRT time. It wasn’t hugely successful.

Downright beautiful!
Then we covered ourselves in sunscreen and insect repellant and hired two row boats, this was the redeeming point in the day. 

We took them out for about an hour on the lake. Unfortunately I didn't take my camera. I did very little rowing, my 10 and 14 year olds took care of most of that (and I gave directions to help them row straight). David had our youngest with him in his boat (we weren't allowed to put than three in the boat), who turned out to be a good rower: plenty of strength and coordination. Our wrestler enjoyed himself so much that he didn’t really want to turn the boat back in.

For me, it was a frustrating day. Here we were in this beautiful spot, with hardly any other people around and it was hard to enjoy because we had boys who needed a lot of “pushing around” to get them to do anything besides hang about in the tent.

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