Living in congested, cramped Tokyo, I thought it would be in the best interests of mental health to ride up to the Tohoku (Northeast) region of Honshu the main island of Japan for 6 days and see what is going on up there. I hope to ride on roads best suited for my motorcycle as much as possible: The brilliant Honda Varadero XL1000V. That means avoiding tight twisting roads which Japan is famous for. Riding tight twisties for 8 hours a day on a heavy bike is not what I will be looking for on the trip. I will ride a loop from Tokyo up to Iwate Prefecture and back trying not to cover the same roads twice. I have never been up to the Tohoku Region before, so I am totally up for this. Here is a picture of what I will be escaping from: This is an intersection about 10 minutes from where I live. There are no less than 16 lanes of traffic passing through this intersection. It is apparently the busiest in the whole country. The gear that needs packing. I do not have a GPS system, so it's old school paper maps for me. The Vara and myself fully-loaded! Outside my apartment. The June rain is still lingering. My girlfriend, Mercédès seeing me off. Her family has a house in Kamaishi, Iwate Prefecture. I will rendezvous with her at the house in 2 days time. As her name, Mercédès suggests, she will take the train. Sensible option. Sayonara!