Yamagata Prefecture

"I remove the shoes and bought straw sandal from the roadside shop..."

I decided to take a job in Yamagata Prefecture to teach the agriculture in a grade school, city Arato in West Okitama County in Valley of Okitama. Where a center of silk worm culture, silk weaving industry.  Before I start our I need the clothes because I have practically none as usual.  Mrs. Yoshida bought the goods and my grade school schoolmate and friend, Miss Hanasaka see all for me and she refuse to accept any pay.  I leave Mizusawa with all my friends and teachers congratulation.  

Go to Shiroishi, about 160 miles by train, and walk to (Miyagi Prefecture) my destination alone carrying all of my clothing and other thing.  On that time there no railroad to Yamagata Prefecture, and in Yamagata not single mile of railroad.  When I walk about 7.8 miles, the rain started soon become very strong rainstorm.  My shoe not good to travel.  I remove the shoes and bought straw sandal from the roadside shop, 2-3 pairs new straw sandal.  My umbrella broken and road of sharp stone cut my sandal to pieces in about an hour.  Sloped roadside stone, so often buy straw sandal again again thus.  Walked till evening, then luckily I get a travel mate.  he was a merchant from city of Nagai, my destination.  He comfort and me encourage me walk together till we reached town of Akau, (means red hot spring), hotspring town of valley of Okitama.  We stop there for night, get massage-woman, get thoroughly massaged all over body, especially foot and legs, soaked in deep hot spring, feeling better and travel mate, the merchant, give me good supper, soon forget the pains of foot and slept very good. 

words by Zenkichi Kikuchi, 1880 - 1965
read in 日本語