Last day in Sapporro

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We woke to the soft flutter of snow outside. Today we would walk around and check out the city a bit.

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Preparing for the snow festival, these scaffolding held together gigantic snow mounds that would later be turned into sculptures, maybe next year I’ll be here to see it, maybe next month.

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Japan’s Don Quixote, they literally have everything.

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We go to a Chinese joint, and accidentally grab seats next to an amazing view.  I watch taxis queue into the train station below, there is so much order to it all.  The city was lovely to watch for a moment.

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We stop by the market to get mushrooms, I see cantaloupe that is very expensive, prized for its perfection.

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And just as we are here, we are on our way home. I’m not sad, I know I’ll be back.

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Rusutsu ski resort

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Waking up to a dank breakfast with all the amenities, miso soup, coffee, and local fair prepared with the heart.

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Nattō, no thank you.

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Taking the free bus from Sapporro to Rusutsu, we stopped at the rest area to stretch and pee. It was well below freezing, and I’m glad I brought my puffy jacket. Mount Yōtei in the distance.

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With our gear, we took the gondola to the ski lifts, and had us a badass time.

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During the summer months this place earns some side coin from their amusement park.

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Wind blowing something fierce, half of the mountain was closed off, the haze behind Mitsy was a torrent of ice crystals.

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Mount Yōtei in the distance.

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The main differentiating factor between this and another top quality ski resort is perhaps the bamboo breaching the snow all over, and the quality of the snow which is much nicer to ski on than what I am typically used to.

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Lake Tōya in the background. Absolutely stunning.

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I got to ring the bell at the summit of Mount Nukkibetsu, which was neat.

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So painfully cold we had to resort to desperate measures to fight the frostbite.

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At least the gondolas were enclosed, and we usually had footrests.

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Hot dog with hot sauce, yum actually…

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Yogurt drink, I never knew it existed, and the people around me shortly after drinking it were probably not to pleased with my love for it.

Sapporro, Japan

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Never fails to take my breath away, happy to live here, happy to leave here, happy to soon return.

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Tasty treats in business class.

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The captain informs us Hokkaido is beneath, looks like the snowy mountains I’ve seen flying into Salt Lake City.

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Sapporro breaks through the clouds.

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We land in the evening after a luxurious flight over in business class thanks to my girlfriend’s buddy pass. Mitsy sorts her baggage and we’re off to the rails to bring us to our stay for the night.

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I’d be lost in this fast paced train station without my lovely guide.

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View from the room we’re staying in.

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A night jaunt to grab some sushi, she informs me its as good as it gets.

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Land of food sculptures!

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The salmon snob that I am, I have to say it is indeed amazing, tender, flavorful.

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Egg custard soup.

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Hills of marshmallow snow.

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Bike storage station.

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Brisbane New Years Eve

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Mitsy getting ready for her flight out, I’m sure she’s thrilled of all these candid shots.

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The chariot to Brisbane awaits, beer and a sentimental book sit in my lap, and a lovely flight attendant takes special care of me, feeling like a king among men.

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Mrs. Cool there with the longboard.

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Ready to hit the town.

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Lots of people out on the town, John carrying his bottle of “water”

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“You really did it, you really burnt my nipple”

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Some Indian music to ring in the new years.

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<3

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John aint feelin it anymore, we egg him on to stick around!

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Looking super sober.

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Hydrate, post dance club.