We’re back at the airport after five days in Japan. On our whirlwind world tour that’s two countries down and six-plus to go.
We arrived at the Tokyo Haneda airport at 5 a.m. Tuesday morning. We took the monorail into Tokyo and spent the day walking around the Tokyo Station/Imperial Palace/Tokyo Harbor area. It was windy and chilly but the sun was out all day. We visited the Tokyo Station Gallery and the Kite Museum. The Imperial Palace Gardens had apple trees blooming. Lunch came in the form of Ramen from a restaurant under a bridge.
That night we took the bullet train as far north as it currently goes and then switched to a slow train to get to Sapporo on Hokkaido. From there it was a bus to Niseko and our hotel.
We checked in, rented our ski gear and hit the slopes. The next three days were spent sliding through powder and exploring all the not-on-the-map runs we could find on Mt. Niseko-Annupuri.
Sometimes the weather was cloudy and windy. Sometimes it was a blizzard. Sometimes we were in fog so thick we could only ski from one orange boundary pole to the next. And on the last morning, it was blue skies.
At the hotel we filled up on free breakfast and soaked in the 42-degree C onsen pools. We slept 10 hours a night and skied seven hours a day. The ski valet guys recognized us without looking at our tag numbers.
It was an awesome trip and now I am completely spoiled on powder. I’m not sure if I will be able to remember how to ski the ice snow in New England.