旅をする蝶(徒歩日本縦断#64)

64日目の今日は徳島県小松島市の善根宿「法泉寺」さんで起床。

今日は本当に朝が寒かった。あとあとニュースで見たら今シーズン1の冷え込みだそう。

通りで寝袋から出れないわけだ

6時半になってから急いで準備をして、

7時には出発

キンキンに冷えた空気の中、久しぶりに上着を着て歩き始める

そんな今日は徳島のお遍路最後の難所。

20番鶴林寺と21番太龍寺を連続で越えて、そのまま22番平等寺までだ

鶴林寺と太龍寺はどちらも山の上に位置していて、もはや連日の恒例行事とさえ言える山越えを今日は2つもしなければいけない

気合いを入れてスタート。

今日は天気もいいので気分はいい。

やはり青空は人の心を上げてくれる。

20番鶴林寺方面へ県道を進むこと8キロほどで

いよいよ登山道への入口の標識がみえる

「しゃあいくぞ!!」

気合い一発、登ろうとしたその時

近くの民家から可愛いワンちゃんが飛び出してきて、横石を案内するかのごとくチラチラ後ろを見ながら先へ進もうとする。

「いや、気持ちはありがたいけど…お家帰ろ…?」

まさかの展開に焦りながら家の人を呼んで回収してもらった笑

気を取り直して鶴林寺に登り始める

約3.5キロの登り道だが、最初の1キロは狭い舗装路だ。

だがこれがまたものすごい斜度で早速息が上がる。

踏ん張りながら1キロ登ると

なぜか茅葺き屋根の休憩所に辿り着いて、眼下にはすでにさっきまでいた街が見下ろせた

そしてここらへんから残り2キロほどはひたすら

石段と未舗装の道半々くらいの急峻な登り

だが、もはやこの程度で「難所」とは言わせないぜ。今まで横石が超えてきた山に比べたら屁でもない。

杉林を吹き抜ける風が、登り続けて火照った身体を冷やしてくれる。林の間を通り抜ける風の音は時に優しく、時に怖いくらいの音で、横石を包み込む。

残り500mほどまで登ると、ほぼ頂上だ

そしてここで眺望が開ける

那珂川を挟んで向こう側に見える山の頂上に太龍寺がある。

すごく贅沢な風景だけど、確かにこれはお遍路さんの心を折るにはちょうどいい眺望…

一回川まで降りてから、また同じくらいの高さの山を登らなければいけないのだから

まさに修行の道を展開しているのがこの鶴林寺と太龍寺なのだ。

そんな眺望をまざまざと見せつけられながらも、午前9時半に鶴林寺に到着

山の上のお寺なだけあって、威厳もありながらどこか寂しさもある。そんな山門をくぐって参拝。

納経もして、さぁ行こうと思った時に、お接待をしているおばあさんがミカンとお茶を振舞ってくれた。

ありがたくいただきながら少しお話をして、10時過ぎに鶴林寺を出て太龍寺へ向かう

ちなみに、第2第3の難所と言われる鶴林寺と太龍寺は横石的には「難所」と言われるほどきつくはなかったけど(焼山寺は本当にきつかった)その中で今日唯一苦しかったのが鶴林寺からの下り坂だ。

急すぎる石段を重い荷物を背負って下っていくのは本当に膝に来る。

体力は有り余っているのに、膝ばかりはどうしようもならない。

飛ばしたい気持ちを抑えてなるべく膝に負担がかからぬようにゆっくり降りていく

そしてやっとの思いで下り切ると、田舎の気持ちいい風景が広がっていた。

最近気づいたんだけど、歩き旅とお遍路の大きな違いは道の違いだ。

歩き旅は国道を中心に、たまに県道というくらいだけど、お遍路旅に関しては本当に県道さえ稀なくらいに基本は生活に根ざした小道や山道を進んでいく

ミカンばたけの間だったり、田んぼのあぜ道だったり、普段の旅じゃ絶対に通らないような小道が遍路道になっているのだ。

まさに地域の人たちに1番近い場所を旅している感覚で、気持ちは夏休みにおじいちゃんの家の周りを探検している。そんなどこか懐かしくて切ない気持ちに常にさせられるのがお遍路なのだ。

ようするに「これこそ日本の原風景」のような場所を通るのがお遍路だと気づいた

そんな小道を満喫しながら

那珂川にかかる橋を渡ると

信じられないくらいの色をした世界が広がっていた。これはもちろん無加工だ。というか横石はブログには加工した写真を使っていない。

ブログこそ横石の旅の記録であり、記録は決して美化されるバカではないと思っているからだ。皆さんに旅を追体験してもらう意味でも、美化するべきではないと思う。横石が旅をしたありのままの日本を知ってもらいたいから。

加工してないのにこの川の色は、自分でも気づかぬうちに加工したのかと疑うレベル。

しばらくこの橋の上でぼんやりしていた

そしていざ、橋を渡ると太龍寺への登りが始まる

相変わらず素敵な道だなぁと思わず呟きたくなるような、小川沿いの緩やかな登りを2キロほど登って

そのあと残り1.5キロは鶴林寺よりはまだ緩やかな杉の階段を登る。

この残り1.5キロで横石より1時間ほど前に鶴林寺を出たという歩きお遍路の人に追いついて、挨拶をしながら軽く情報交換をしながら追い抜いていく(というか初心者の横石は情報をもらいまくってるんだけどね笑)

中には外国から来た人も多く、拙い英語で色々な情報を教えてあげたりもした。

この交流もお遍路ならではだ

そして12時前に

無事徳島最後の難所と言われる太龍寺を制覇

木漏れ日が神々しさを醸し出す、今までで一番好きなお寺だ

境内もまた整然としていて、座れる場所もたくさんあり、ついつい長居をして先ほど追い抜いたお遍路さんたちとたわいもない会話をしたりした

気づけば1時間ほど経っていて、午後1時前に下山を開始。

太龍寺からの下山道は膝のために急な未舗装ではなく、緩やかな舗装路を選んだ。

そして太龍寺から7キロほどのところにある道の駅わじきに2時半頃到着し、遅めの昼ごはん

そしてここからは今日最後の札所、22番平等寺に向かう

これまたなんとも言えないのどかな田舎道を、時間もあったのでのんびり進んでいると、目の前をふわふわと薄水色した蝶が飛んでいって目の前の花に止まった

「アサギマダラ」というこの蝶は横石が大好きな蝶。

なんせこの蝶は、旅をする蝶なのだ。

夏は本州の標高1000m程度の涼しい山岳地帯に

そして秋になると暖かい地域を求めて遥々南下してくる。

個体によっては遠く沖縄まで旅をする

時に風に乗って、時に雨宿りしながら、多い時で1日300キロも移動する

小さい頃にそんなことを図鑑で見てから、この蝶が無性に気になる存在になった

地図もないのに、どうやって海を渡って沖縄までたどり着くのか

握れば粉々になるくらい儚くて小さな存在なのに、なぜそんなに力強く飛ぶことができるのか

今はひらひらと、四国で舞っているこの蝶も、夏には本州にいたのだ。

そう思うだけでひどく心を動かされる

こんなに小さな存在がこんなに大冒険をしているんだ。

強く見えない存在でも、必ず内に秘めた強さがあるし、強く見える存在でも、必ず内に隠した弱さがある。それは人間でも、虫でも、自然にあるもの全てをそう思えてしまって仕方ない

横石も歩き続ければいつかこんなに強くなれるかなぁ。なんて思いながら歩みを進める

蝶も何処かへ飛んで行った

次はどこへいくのだろうか

横石も、あの蝶も。

それにしても道端には普段見てないだけで本当に色んな世界がある

こんなにかっちょいいオオカマキリだって威嚇しながらレンズを覗き込む

あんなに素早いトンボも、素手で捕まえてしまった。

お遍路の道は花遍路

おまけは平等寺にいくまでに越えなければいけない「大根峠」という小さな峠

竹林の中の小径を潜り抜けて

無事に22番札所の平等寺へ

時刻は4時前だが、次の札所であり徳島最後の札所の23番薬王寺はここから21キロ離れているので明日に残して、今日は薬王寺に向けて南下しながら野宿場所を探すことに

お遍路さん横断注意

そして5時半、日が暮れるギリギリに

いい感じの遍路小屋発見

今日はここで休むことにしよう

歩行距離 35キロ

徳島県小松島市→阿南市

総歩行距離 2102キロ

お遍路総歩行距離 151キロ

20番鶴林寺→21番太龍寺→22番平等寺

今日も最後まで読んでいただきありがとうございます!ブログランキングにも参加しているのでぜひ下の日本一周ボタンを押して応援してください!

にほんブログ村 旅行ブログ 日本一周へ


にほんブログ村

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