The next morning, after a very Japanese hotel breakfast, I checked out and put my suitcase in a locker at the station for easy access later. The early rain had passed, so it was a good opportunity to take a look through the shops in the old streets and find the places I'd missed the day before.
A slight mutual startle when snapping a shot of a bicycle parking lot.
Back out and walking through the town, now even more deserted by night. Most places seemed to be shut, so I kept walking until, nearing Shiroyama Park 城山公園 again, I located a burger place called Center4 Hamburgers tucked away beyond a dark corridor that gave the impression that it was definitely not open to the public. But it was, and the friendly owner-chef served up one the most satisfying hamburgers I've ever eaten.
It was a cosy joint, covered in signs and warmly lit, with only a couple of other customers in a tiny courtyard formed by the surrounding buildings at the front. 10/10 would go back to this place.
After filling up I took a stroll around the town, through the pitch black old streets, then sending long shadows down more empty lanes. Vending machines softly humming. At the station, thirsty again, I stopped by another bank of them to try a different drink: Minute Maid Hot Lemonade. Highly recommended for cold night walks!
At the hotel, thoroughly worn out, I should have tried the onsen 温泉. I know better now, but at the time the only thing I could think of was sleep.
Wandering some more through the back streets, no one in sight. Through squeezed alleys between buildings so close that their eaves almost touched, gas meters and mail boxes bookending bicycles and stacks of refuse and further narrowing the space.
All the shops seemed to have closed for the day and the restaurants not yet opened, including one, hidden away, with a tiny menu that listed surprisingly expensive steaks.
As the sun fell and the air cooled again I went back to the main street and dropped by the hotel to refresh before heading out to find some dinner.