River & Chill
It seems like going to this spot by the river has become a yearly summer tradition for us. The thing I like about this area by the river is that there is a huge rock that blocks the current and keeps it to one side. This makes it safe for kids to swim. And for the adventurous adults like myself, the current flow on the other side of the rock makes for a good workout and massage.
During summers in Japan, the weather gets quite humid and temperatures can reach as high as 40.2 °C (104.4 °F). Which makes water activities quite attractive. While there are many swimming pools around they are usually jam packed, the beaches as well but those are far and wide from where I live. So the next best thing is the river.There is something magical about rivers and how they flow. If you place yourself in the current, it is as if your worries flow away with the current. Am I the only person that feels that way?
And of course another good thing about the river is you can actually do a BBQ there. Most if not all beaches in Japan don't allow BBQ-ing which is quite disappointing. But come to think of it, I would never really think to do a BBQ on the beach in Jamaica.It just wasn't a thing. Many Australians have told me that it is very common to have BBQs by the beach and in fact they actually have grills/pits that anyone can use as they please. This might not be every beach down under. How are things in your area, can you BBQ on the beach? Is that a part of the culture?
As usual I was the grill king as it is something I really enjoy doing and at the same time I don't allow anyone and everyone to BBQ for me. I think I know how meat should be done and I guess as a Jamaican I don't really fancy half cooked meat. The grill was set up using river stones and boy did it turn out great. We had a little trouble getting the fire burning 🔥 as we didn't bring any charcoal starters. Luckily we had some tissue and gathered some dried twigs to get it started. What really helped to get the fire going though, a mini electric fan that someone brought.
A very interesting culture that never seems to get old here is the watermelon smashing in the summer time, especially amongst kids. Someone in our group brought a huge watermelon they got from a neighbor. The watermelon smash is usually played by placing a blind fold on the player, placing a stick in their hand and then spinning them about 3 times. It is basically like the Piñata. Thus time around though we didn't use any blind folds as the watermelon was just too huge and it would take ages to break. After the kids gave it a few good whacks, one of the adults had to step in to finish it off.
It was supposed to rain that day but God was on our side and kept the waters in the sky until we left. God is good. Everyone had a great time, especially the kids. As for me, well after a few hours of grilling I took a nice dip in the river and did that workout/ massage thing using the water current.
How about you, do you have rivers nearby? Do you sometimes take a dip?