天国からのお迎え(re:日本一周#47)

2017年 8月1日 午前9時

船は定刻通りに鹿児島県 志布志港に辿り着いた

この日は快晴。フェリーを降り立った瞬間に、夏の太陽で蒸れた草の匂いと、息苦しさにむせそうになる。

鹿児島はやはり南の国だ。湿度が高く、汗が噴きだす。

そんな中、今日は本土最南端の佐多岬まで向かう日程だ。

出発が午前9時で、佐多岬までは100キロ弱

急ぎ目で走り始める

まずは志布志から鹿屋まで、大隅半島を横断する40キロの道のりを走る

のどかな大隅平野をひた走る

フェリーの長旅を終えたのもあって、「早く走りたい欲」が強かった為、調子はまずまずだ

なにより、一年ぶりに味わう日本の原風景はやっぱり格別だった

田んぼ独特のあの匂い

夏の日差しに照らされる感覚

風を切って走る気持ち良さ

全てが懐かしく、「自転車日本一周に戻って来たぞぉ!」とテンションは高まっていた

途中、巨大カブトムシがいる道の駅で立ち止まって小休憩。洗濯物も手洗いで済ませて荷台に積み直して、いよいよ鹿屋の町が見えてきた

時刻は12時、無事に40キロの道のりを超えて大隅半島を横断。ここまでは気持ちよく、軽快に走っていた。

そう。ここまでは…

鹿屋の町からはひたすら南へ、本土最南端の佐多岬に向かって走るだけだ。

田園風景を抜けると、海沿いに50キロほど進む道のりへと変わっていく

しかし、海沿いの道に出ると予想外の事態が起こる。

まず、アップダウンが続いていたこと。

細かいアップダウンの連続は、一年ぶりに走るヨコイシの体を確実に苦しめていた

そして、気温の異常な上がり方

後々判明したんだけど、2017年 8月前半の鹿児島の異常な高温は地元の人でも味わったことのないものだったらしい

この日も気温は38度を示していた

最後に、全く補給地点が無いこと

アップダウンの連続で、足の余力が無くなり

異常な高温で、水もガブガブ飲まなきゃ走れない

なのにコンビニも自販機もない

海沿い特有の熱気に駄目押しされて

水はみるみる無くなっていった

気づけば一滴も無い

けれども今の時刻は昼下がりの一番暑い時間帯

干からびたミミズの如く、ヨコイシの身体は干上がった。

目の前がチカチカする

あたまがぐわんぐわんする

足が動かなくなっていく

確実にぶっ倒れる一歩手前まで追い詰められる

遠くから救急車の音が聞こえた

「あれぇ?呼んでないのに救急車が来たぞぉ?俺を迎えに来てくれたのかなぁ?」

薄れゆく意識の中で救急車をヒッチハイクしようとした

見事にスルーされた

もういっそのこと殺してくれ

「この峠を越えても何もなかったら、とりあえずぶっ倒れよう」

そう思いながら最後の力を振り絞って登った坂道の先にそいつはあった

コカコーラの赤いボディの自販機

自販機で泣きそうになったのは人生で後にも先にもこの時だけな気がする

アクエリアスを一気飲み

そして予備に3本買って、やっと走れるパワーが体に戻る

だが、干上がりかけた身体はもちろん熱中症気味になっていて、昼ごはんは受け付けてくれなかった。

無理矢理にでも流し込もうと、ファミレスのうどんをかきこんで、一路佐多岬を目指す

根占の町まで来ると、佐多岬までは残り40キロとなっていた

残り40キロの間に町らしき町は無さそうなので、根占のコンビニで最後に買い込んでおく

そして午後3時。佐多岬までラストアタック開始

ガリガリ君で体を冷やしてドーピングしたんだけど、それでも佐多岬までの道のりは険しい

まず、峠の連続

標高100.200.100.300.100みたいなそこそこ辛い峠が連続して待ち構える

そして息苦しいほどの蒸し暑さ

威嚇して来る猿の群れ

ど田舎すぎて、人より絶対に猿の方がたくさんいるところだ

猿の群れは牙を向いて威嚇して来る

一人で走っている時にこれほど怖いものはない

まじでこんな感じで猿が平気で道路横断してるから、恐ろしい

さらにアブの大群も襲って来る

「久しぶりの血だぜ!かかれ!」

とでも言われたかのように一斉に群がる

しかも、さっき洗濯しちゃったせいでヨコイシはノーパンだった

ズボンの間から容赦なくアブは侵入してきて大事なところを突き刺す

最初は必死で抵抗してたけど、熱中症になりかけて、それでも峠を越え続けた身体は、そのうちアブに献血をするかのように抵抗することを諦めた

アブ達のご馳走になりながら満身創痍で走って

大事なところも腫らしながら

それでも午後6時

やっと着いた

かなり嬉しくて叫んでしまった

ここがスタート地点みたいなものだ

ここからひたすら北へ、本州最北端の大間崎に向かってヨコイシの旅は始まるんだから(始まる前に試練ありすぎな)

今日は近くの無料キャンプ場でキャンプだ

テントを張ろうとしてたら、同じ自転車旅人の青猫さんに出会って、共に一夜を過ごすことになった

テントを並べて、旅の話に花を咲かせながら、気づけば爆睡していた…

走行距離 95キロ

鹿児島県志布志市→鹿児島県佐多岬

総走行距離 3480キロ

今日も最後まで見ていただきありがとうございます!最後に是非下の日本一周自転車ボタンを押してブログランキングも応援してください

にほんブログ村 旅行ブログ 日本一周(自転車)へ


にほんブログ村

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