Japan gets hot in the summer. Not just hot but humid too. The number on the thermometer really doesn't make it unbearable, it is the humidity that takes care of the discomfort department. Despite its northerly coordinates Tohoku was on a par with Okinawa in the temperature stakes.I would wager though that the humidity wouldn't have been noticeable if it weren't for the deluge sandwiched sunshine. Once the heat was turned back on the moisture could be seen visibly rising from puddles.
We had been flitting between rain showers all week and Hokenjyo-day was no exception. We just seemed to time things well. Random stops at random places when showers subsided or in the short lull between downpours, we managed the storms :-). We lucked out at Ofunato; a fairly long dry spell in which to do our picking up. After getting Taro we had intended to see if a groomer, who I had been in touch with on my last trip, would spruce up Pitan given her matted derrière. The boy kitty we picked up, Setsuo, had come in a carrier that was hers so it was a perfect excuse to stop by. We were to follow the pound worker to the groomer's house.
We bade our farewells to the vet and were pulling out of the pound gate with windows down and arms waving vigorous goodbyes. [Side note-In Japan, departures have a tendency to be lengthy with those staying behind energetically waving until the departing are out of view]. So we were heading down the street rolling up the windows with the remaining officials still enthusiastically sending us off in the rear-view mirror. And just as the window reached its resting place at the top of the frame IT hit us.
MOTHER OF &^%*@#!!
The smell....... the smell..... the Smmmmmmellllllll! Quick down with the windows. One last wave, and a frantic rush to get those vitreous protectors DOWN for the love of God.....DOWN!!!!! OH Taro, you come with more baggage than bargained for in this packed to the gills vehicle. So Pitan, you are forgiven, if this groomer says yes, Taro my friend, YOU. ARE. UP!! A few twisty windy tiny well ventilated roads later we arrived at the groomer's salon. The flat-packed wire cage we thought we had spare turned out to be missing a door when we de-flat packed it. We ended up not making a carrier drop off but rather asking permission to borrow one. Ok hopefully we'll be more successful in quest two.
-We have seriously pungent dogs in the car, would it be at all possible to use your facilities to wash them or even just one?
-Sorry, I'm heading out.
-Oh.... ok.......:-( Gambarimasu!! (we will endure!)
So our fragrant companion infused his odour so deeply in the car's air system on our way home that for the duration of our subsequent long distance trips we would have wafts of his presence each time we turned on the air conditioner even though he had been safely transported to the Bandai shelter. I apologise profusely to the next lot of customers that car serves, I just hope they smoke!!!