空より青く(徒歩日本縦断#79)

79日目の今日は松山市郊外にある47番札所八坂寺の通夜堂で起床

冷蔵庫まである完璧すぎる通夜堂で、しかも昨日の夜は松山で美味しいものをたくさん食べたので体力は万全だ

そんな今日は松山に残っている六個の札所を制覇してそのまま今治方面へ向かう55キロのロングコース。そして久しぶりの札所ラッシュだ

天気も朝から気持ちよく晴れる中、6時半にスタート

松山市内を練り歩きながらまずは10キロ圏内に固まっている48番から51番までを朝のうちに参拝する

歩き始めてから4.5キロ。7時半に48番西林寺

そこから3キロ歩いて8時半に49番浄土寺

浄土寺からは「え?ここ遍路道?!」と突っ込みたくなるような住宅街の裏路地を抜けて

綺麗に整備がされた墓地を抜けて

9時過ぎ、約2キロ歩いて50番繁多寺

そしてそこからさらに4キロ弱歩いて道後温泉方面に進むと

51番石手寺には10時に到着。

松山市街を抜けるここまでのお寺は本当に札所の距離が短い。石手寺で少し休憩をして、ここから11キロ先の52番太山寺を目指す

道中は一大観光地である道後温泉街を抜ける遍路道だ


観光地のアーケード街を抜けるのはやはり楽しい。食べ歩きの誘惑を受けながらも雰囲気だけを楽しんで

道後温泉の本館へ

去年の秋に愛媛に旅行に来た時に道後温泉には入浴したけど、やっぱり味があっていいなぁ…

朝っぱらから温泉に入りたい気持ちを抑えて後ろ髪引かれる思いで太山寺を目指して松山市を西へひたすら歩く

市街は市街でやっぱり誘惑が多い

すき家とか松屋とか、今日こそ見つけたら食べるぞ!って時に限って見つける時間が10時とかだから食べれないのがまたタイミングの悪い男だ…

だけどその代わりに今日は事あるごとにもぎたてみかんのお接待を受ける

日本一のみかんの産地なだけあって本当に美味しいみかんを今日だけで7個もいただいてしまった笑、お腹が幸せなタプタプ具合でビタミンも取れるので本当にありがたい限りだ。

そして午後12時半に52番太山寺に到着

立派な山門をくぐると

国宝ともなっている本堂へ

たしかに存在感がすごい。とにかくここ太山寺は松山市にありながら山寺の様子を漂わせる、威厳のあるお寺だった。

そして最近、歩きお遍路さんにやたらと声をかけられるようになった。

しかも「徒歩で日本縦断してる、明治大学の!」みたいな。笑

何も自己紹介してないのにどうしてだろうと思ってたら、どうやら歩きお遍路さんは何回も回っている人がたくさんいて、それが一種のコミュニティになって情報交換をしている中で「めちゃくちゃ早い歩きお遍路がいる、しかも北海道から歩いてるらしい」と話題になっていたらしい。笑笑

そんなことを言われて悪い気はしない。伝説のお遍路になる日も近いか?なんて変な妄想をしながら、次の円明寺へ2.5キロ歩く

そして午後1時に53番園明寺に到着

これにて松山市内のお寺を周り終わり、札所ラッシュも終了だ。

次の54番延命寺はここから35キロ離れていて、今治市にあるので、今日の参拝はこれにて終了

あとはひたすら延命寺に近いところまで歩いて距離を縮めるだけだ。

一応今日の目的地をここから29キロ先の公園に決めていたが、午後一時の今から歩いたら午後七時は過ぎるだろう。

もう少し近い場所を目的地にしても良かったが、これから通る道は海沿いの国道で夜でも明るいだろうと判断したのでそのまま残り29キロを歩くことに。

そんな海沿いの遍路道は、四国の中でもトップクラスに綺麗な青い海が広がる道で、天気も快晴。ついつい足を止めて見入ってしまう

まぁ今日はもう参拝もないし、急ぐ必要もない。のんびり行こうか。

静かに波打つ青い海を眺めてたらそんな気持ちになったので、せっかくの絶景を楽しみながら歩くことに

それにしても透き通っている。カキ氷にかけたら美味しそうな色合いだ

瀬戸内海の島々浮かぶさらにその先には本州が見えてくる。

この道はどこまで続くんだろうか

俺はどこまで歩いていけるんだろうか

無限に広がるこの世界は

どこまでいくのか

どこで止むのか

青すぎる海と空は心まで青く透き通った色に染め上げていく。よく考えたら毎日こんな風景に出会えている俺は世界で一番幸せ者なんじゃないだろうか。青い海も、広い空も、入道雲も、色づく木々も、虫のさざめきも、お金では買えないものだからこそ、追いかけ続ける価値がそこにあって、その憧れは止まることを知らない。

海沿いを10キロほど歩いて少し内陸に入ると、そこかしこにみかん畑が見えてくる

柔らかな西日を浴びて、美味しそうに成るみかん。

みかんがオレンジなのは太陽の光をたくさん浴びているからなのかな。そう考えてしまうほどに愛媛の西日は暖かい。

そんな暖かい道を歩いていたら後ろから声をかけてくれた旅人さんがいた

秋田で出会ったカブ乗りの旅人さんが、わざわざ近くを通ったからと駆けつけてくれたのだ

奇跡の再会に、パシャり

ありがたいことに差し入れもいただいてしまった。たけさん本当にありがとうございます!なんかまた会いそうな気がしますね笑

そして一つ峠を越えてまた海沿いに戻ってしばらくすると

今治市へと入る

沈んでいく夕日を背に、歩き続けて午後6時を回ってすっかり暗くなった頃に、今日の目的地までの最後のコンビニで食料を買い込んで、いざ歩き始めるとすぐに気づく

「あ、ケータイ忘れた!」

多分バックパックを置いていたコンビニの前の地面に置いてきてしまった。でも本当に歩き始めてから1分も経たないうちに気づいたのですぐに戻ると

「え?無い…」

たしかに忘れたはずの場所にないのだ。

焦ってバックパックの中を血眼になって探すが見つからない。コンビニではトイレを使ってないからあるはずもないが、店員さんにも聞いて一緒に探してもらうがやはり無い

「もしかして置き忘れた瞬間盗られた?」

嫌な予感がしつつも防犯カメラを確認してもらっている間に周辺を探し続けるがやはり無い

「終わった…」そう思った

もしケータイを無くしたら、今まで節約生活を続けてきた意味がないほどの大ダメージを負うし、なにより旅の記録が無くなる…

泣きかけ寸前まで追い込まれ、もはやヤケクソになってあるはずもないコンビニの水道管の中を覗くと

キラリと光るものが…

なんとあり得ない話だが、バックパックを置いた場所からは離れた水道管の中にあったのだ…

誰かのイタズラか、神の気まぐれかは分からないが、とにかく有って本当に良かった…

安心して一気に疲れがきたが、親身になって探してくれた店員さんに感謝を告げて、残り7キロを歩く。もうすっかり夜になってしまったし、到着時間も大幅に遅れることになったが仕方ない。むしろ無事に有ったことへの安心感で満たされていた

道中の石油工場の灯りがまるでディズニーのように輝いていた。まるでここまで歩いてきたご褒美のようだ。

そして午後七時半に無事55キロを歩ききって目的地の公園に到着。テントを立てて今日も野宿だ。

明日も今治の札所ラッシュがあるが、その後には難所の横峰寺という山寺が待ち構えるので気を抜かずに歩いて行こう。

歩行距離 55キロ

愛媛県松山市→今治市

総歩行距離 2795キロ

お遍路19日半

総歩行距離 854キロ

48番西林寺→49番浄土寺→50番繁多寺→51番石手→52番太山寺→53番園明寺

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是非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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