I went back to Ireland for a Christmas/ New Years holiday, returning on Sunday to find a new and unrecognizable Aomori. Three weeks ago I could have walked to school blind folded, today I couldn’t even find a path to guide me. When the snow falls in Northern Japan, it falls and falls and covers ever inch of your memory. The path I cycled in the summer and walked in the frosty ends of autumn has gone into deep hibernation, in its place are huge mountains of snow. I was so confused when I stood at the edge of my road unsure whether to climb the mountain or detour onto the narrow road. I did a bit of both desperetly looking for others to follow, which is a key feature to survival in Japan. While climbing the mountains you get a few options, one is you slip and land on your arse (bear in mind you are raised well above road level for all to view your fall) or you slip and your foot goes flying through a chunk of powder, before you know it one leg is buried and the other still perched above, you fall then of course due to major unbalancing. Then there is the option of taking one step and flying through the side of the pathway, your leg bound for the road or OR it flies straight down along with your second foot following its example. Then you snow wade. I’m not sure why but I found this hilarious, I was crying with laughter as I cautiously took each step having no idea which option would delight me. I was well equipped in snow gear so very much enjoyed my amusing walk to school but I don’t know how the old grannys hack it. At lunch I headed for the bank half delighted but secretly disappointed to see these adventurous path ways had been cleared, but the odd path mountain was left for me to explore. Aomori is a scarily snowy but equally exciting place to live!
I rooted up some pics I took during the summer here are some before and after snow shots.