Beautiful looking gravel road there Joe.
With yesterday's 218 km ride (on Strava) I managed to crack the 800 km per month for the first time this year. Last year I only did this once, the month we rode the Fleche from Aichi to Tokyo. Having five weekends in the month helps, but during the middle weekend I only did shopping rides.
We had a small family party the night before that kept me up until 01:00, so I only set the alarm for 07:00 and left at 08:20. The goal was Chichibu, which is pretty far from here, especially if you come back via the river, swinging north through Nagatoro to avoid climbing Yamabushi toge from both sides. I did some VeloViewer tiling near Mt Buko and Nagatoro.
The first tile was a gravel tile on the NW side of Mt Buko. There's a limestone cave near it but I didn't visit that.
I chased several more tiles, always with a weary eye towards the rain clouds. It had rained briefly around mid-day between Yamabushi toge and Chichibu, but somehow I managed to dodge it for the rest of the day (and night). At Nagatoro and beyond there were puddles on the road from rain that had fallen in the late afternoon but no new rain where I rode
There were a lot of greenhouses for growing strawberries.
I came across these huge straw sandals, about 4 m tall, made from real rice straw:
with a message explaining they are meant to chase away Covid. Here the sandal is telling the virus "新型コロナ死ネ" = "Covid, drop dead!"
Well, if it was me, I'd opt for mass vaccinations from a competent elected government capable of delivering them.
The local government here in Setagaya announced they will send out tickets to anyone born on or before March 31, 1962 (or with medical conditions or working in elderly care) between June 15-19. Currently most sites here are booked until mid-July, so that means a likely vaccination date in August for my wife and me (yes, we're old enough).
Back to the ride: The sun set when I was still 90 km from home, but it took me longer than expected to get back. Everybody was already in bed by the time I got back to Setagaya in the wee hours of the morning.