The manager drove me to the Karuizawa Shinkansen Station and I caught the Hokuriku to Omiya, where I transferred to the Hayabusa, their fastest train. Here you see the shinkansen going to Akita, which is pulling my train:
It was foggy the whole day, with this Sakura view thusly obscured:
It took almost 15 minutes to walk to the Westin Sendai, one of my favorite hotels. I stayed here soon after the Fukushima nuclear cataclysm, and the room cost $45/night. I am thus 50 miles away from Japan's trillion dollar problem. This how the hotel building will look like in a week or so.
I walked around their enclosed malls, and, right in the middle of one, a love hotel:
A little more than $40 for two hours. Walked outside and was greeted by my Blue Bar Pigeon:
But no Sakura. I returned to the Executive Lounge for my sparse dinner:
Tomorrow I will Shinkansen to Tokyo, for this will be THE peak weekend for cherry blossoms.
Tropical Cyclone Cook at 55 MPH struck Vanuatu, but could strengthen into a Category 3 and head for New Caledonia: