|Oura Church, Nagasaki|
On 25th July, St James’s day, and also St Christopher’s day, i was away quite early to catch the bus to Fukuoka. In late morning i met up with my pilgrim confrere, wielding the sleeping bag i’d lumbered him with a week before. Out of a feeling of solidarity with my peregrinations he insisted on taking me for coffee, followed by a great lunch. It turned out he’d spent time as a student of English in London in 2003-4, and was very knowledgable about English football, having been to a number of Chelsea matches. He also once had his photograph taken with Arsene Wenger, who was manager of the Japanese national team before moving to Woolwich Arsenal. I had a prayer card of Our Lady of Guadalupe to give to him, before realising that in addition i could provide a more practical pilgrimage present - the ‘Dazer’ dog deterrent that had been such a boon in the earlier stages of my expedition. St James, patron saint of pilgrims – please pray for us!