Fine day as I recall “Indian summer” today, my wife and I went to run around Asuka Village in Nara which has over 1400 years history and sometimes called as “hometown of Japanese mind”.
At 10 am we started from Asuka Station toward Kitora Tumulus.
It is located about 2 km south of the station with upload slope.
We ran very slowly and enjoyed nice view of winter rice paddy field.
She asked me to keep moderate speed in order for her to catch me up because the reason for coming Asuka was to lose her weight increased by big steak we enjoyed yesterday.
In front of Kitora Tumulus , we found large exhibition hall which displayed exhibits related to “Four Gods.
Four Gods are composed of Blue Dragon (east), White Tiger (west), Red Chinese Phoenix (south) and God of Water/Black Warrior (north).
It seemed to be made around 1300 years ago and the exhibition hall displays original mural open to public quarterly.
Today we encountered the exhibition of Black Warrior (because it is a god of winter, I guess)
but it was fully previously reserved and we could not see the original mural unfortunately.
Then we ran to Takamatsuduka Tomb.
It also has beautiful murals and made almost same era as Kitora Tumulus.
While we were running, we felt hot and took off running jacket and ran.
It was a warm day and we ran with half sleeve shirts.
While we ran up to Amakashi Hill, we passed big turtle stone along the road.
This turtle stone was partly carved but almost remained natural stone.
It seems to be a mystery why it was made and placed there.
The Hill has about 150 meter above sea level and 1 km length from south to north.
Its slope is sometimes moderate on pathway but steep at the edge.
She had tough time to run and walk up the Hill.
It is said that ancient gentry named Soga had his large mansion on top of the Hill.
We enjoyed seeing the wonderful view from Amakashi observatory and imagined how the gentry Soga had their life there.
Then we dropped in Asuka-ji Temple.
We saw pretty flowers in winter.
The running tour is almost over,
We ran toward Tachibana-dera Temple and Public Bath near by.
Achibana-dera was a temple which Prince Shotoku was born.
But, as she was tired, we quickly walked through the temple to have bath and drink of beer with late lunch.
Then we arrived the goal.
However, unfortunately, the restaurant was closed due to COVID-19.
The dream of beer was gone and hunger remained.
After taking bath, we took Kame Bus (Turtle Bus) and reached a railroad station to find Family Mart and bought sandwich and ice tea for eating in a train.
We ran with up and down and it took one hour and a half.
Hungry but enjoyable running, it was!