Friday, April 22, 2011

This Week's Bucket List Additions 14

I'm still flying pretty high about the news I got last Friday and clearly Japan has been on my mind a lot.  So I thought I'd present another edition of bucket list items that I want to accomplish while in Japan.

-Watch the Sunrise from Japan's largest Mountain.  Difficulty Rating 5 out of 10:
Mt. Fuji is a majestic sight.  It's not only Japan's largest mountain, but also it's most beautiful mountain.  Last year I bought my wife a Japanese hiking guide for her birthday and it has wonderful things to say about hiking Fuji-sama, the ceiling of Japan.  Many people hike up the mountain during the night so they can see the sun rise from the peak.  Just thinking about it sends a shiver of awe down my spine.


But once you've hiked to the top and watched the sun begin it's journey, the fun isn't over.  Apparently theres a route down the mountain that feels like moon walking.  I guess the combination of soft cushy gravel and downward pull of gravity allow you to make giant leaps through moon like terrain without injuring yourself.  I can't wait to hike this beautiful mountain, slurp some noodles at a checkpoint along the way, see the sun rise from the ocean and then bounce back down the mountain.

-See Monumental Sculptures at the Sapporo Snow Festival.  Difficulty Rating 4 out of 10:
Once a year in Hokkaido (the Alaska of Japan) a grand festival celebrating snow and ice is held.  Sculptors representing many different countries, companies and styles use snow as their medium to create massive towering displays.


We've all tried to turn snow into art, whether it was a snow person or a snow fort or a snow angel.  But I never had the kind of success these artists do.  I don't know why temporary art captivates me so, but I just LOVE it.  Tell me there's a chalk art festival or sand castle competition and I will be there.  Perhaps that is why I am so fascinated by the change of seasons; nature quickly erases the beauty of one season to temporarily replace it with another.  All I can say is that the Snow Festival in Sapporo fills me with excitement.

-Attempt the 'Ninja Warrior' obstacle course.  Difficulty Rating 9 out of 10:
In Japan there's a TV program called 'Sasuke' where contestants from all walks of life try to complete a four stage obstacle course.  It must be pretty hard, because of the 2,600 people how have attempted the course, only three people have actually finished.  It's aired on G4 here in the states as 'Ninja Warrior' and I've always wanted to put my ninja skills to the test by facing the course.

I have no idea how to apply for the show, but I will do everything I can to learn how.  How hard can it be? There use to be a replica of the course at a theme park in Tokyo called Muscle Park, which I was planning to visit.  But while writing this blog I discovered that the park closed down last year and I had to adjust the difficulty rating for this entry...

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