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a train to the not-so-distant countryside

There’s a weird disconnect when get on a train out to the countyside: You feel you’ve traveled farther in time than you have in distance. Sunday it took  three transfers and an hour and a half before I finally reached the Kominato Tutsudo Line in Chiba, on the other side of the bay from Tokyo. The carriage sooty orange and beige, it smells of diesel oil and there’s no one at the ticket wicket except an old woman selling pickles. Like me this old couple didn’t look like they had any place in particular to go — they just wanted to watch the 菜の花 (rape) flowers spray past the windows.