I went out for a little bit of urban exploring today. Dave and I have been running the same route for our long runs for a while now. To add miles, we will add an extra loop here or there. There is one area where the road goes through a tunnel and is closed to pedestrians. At this location, we simply turn around. We have wondered where the side trail might lead. I decided to take the train into Zushi and then walk over to the area to investigate.

First I made a stop at Zushi Beach. It was a beautiful day.

The first path I checked out led me to a beautiful area. Surfers and paddle boarders use this passage as an access to the area around the point of Zushi Beach.

As always, stairs!

The other path led me to the fancy neighborhood near Ōsaki Park. It was a steep uphill climb. There were a few special treats at the top. The first, Mt. Fuji.

The second, blooming shamrocks.

The third, cherry blossoms starting to bloom!

There were only a few trees in this grove. None the less, I felt the first signs of spring fever! Honestly, this has been a delightful winter. Mostly sunny skies and very mild temperatures. However, I’m very excited to experience the beauty of the spring blooms. I had to make myself stop taking pictures of the blossoms. They were so beautiful and the light was perfect.

One last picture of Mt. Fuji before I tell you about the fish heads.

So, fish heads. After my urban hike, I was ready for a snack. I needed to head to main base via the train to pick up the car after having the oil changed. I stopped at Family Mart. Family Mart is my favorite convenient store chain here in Japan. I grabbed a bottle of water, an onigiri and a bag of Japanese crackers. While walking from the train station to the service station on base, I was snacking on crackers.

Well, I thought they were all crackers. Turns out, they included dried fish.

After I pulled it out of the bag, I had an instant “WTF” moment. Then I remembered, I’m in Japan. They eat fish in everything. Even crackers.

I saved the rest to eat until I got home and could dump out the bag. As you can see, the fish were advertised. I guess I should look closer next time I try a new Japanese snack. In the small dish are all the fish and fish heads included in my snack!

I did try one. They weren’t too bad. They were very crunchy with a salty, sweet fishy taste. The aftertaste kept me from eating another!