Tuesday, 27 May 2014

The Ohenro Blues

I have been home now for about three weeks. Things at work have settled back into some semblance of order, having to deal with hundreds of emails.

I have to say I am now experiencing the post ohenro blues and am yearning to be back walking the Shikoku Pilgrimage. I am already planning in my mind for when I will do my next one.

A dear friend of mine, Bob, visited last weekend, who had just recently finished the Camino Pilgrimage in Spain. I enjoyed being able to share my experiences and many osettai stories with him, as well as, hearing about his adventure.

I just finished reading another ohenro's blog (  and enjoyed following along in my Route Guide book, tracing his footsteps. It brought back fond memories and gave me some great ideas where to stay next time.

I wanted to bring back Kukai (my walking stick - kongozue) back to Canada. When the Air Canada check-in agent at Narita came around from the counter and enquired about it, I asked if I could take it on the plane. She said it would depend on security. She took it over to security and came back with the bad news that it would not be allowed thru security. However, as my last osettai gift, she offered to check it thru (at no charge). I removed the handle cover and bell. She asked her baggage helper to go get a large plastic bag. He wrapped Kukai carefully in the plastic and placed a fragile sticker on it. Mentally, I said my farewell to Kukai and thanked him for helping me complete the pilgrimage, thinking maybe he would get lost on the flights home and I would never see him again.

Kukai, now stands proudly in the corner of my dining room for all to see. He made it to Toronto and then on to Ottawa. I had the opportunity to go for a nice hike to the Gatineau hills two weekends ago and took Kukai with me. He was happy to be in the mountains again.

Thanks to everyone for reading my blog and for all the lovely comments (which were emailed to me). I enjoyed getting them as I journeyed on my pilgrimage.

If you are reading my blog for the first time, the posts are in the reverse order (newest to oldest). I haven't found a way yet to reverse the order easily. If you want to read the entries in the order I travelled, you can use the list on the right hand side and work your way up.

I humbly thank Kukai and all the wonderful ohenros I met on my journey for making it an experience of a lifetime. Arigato Gozaimasu.

One of the things I enjoyed was the variety of fountain ornaments at each wash station basin and below is a picture from Temple 1 - Ryozenji, which has both a statue of Kukai and a dragon spout. I enjoyed seeing the many different dragon spouts at many of the temples.

Temple 1 Ryozenji Wash Basin Station

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