So, Babushka has continued to be the star of the show in the window of the British Luxury Brands Group store in central Tokyo. Chris has been enjoying the hospitality of the Japanese people who have given support whilst he is there. There was the hot springs motel, very traditional, with indoor and outdoor spring.
He arrived in style for the opening ceremony in a 400 hp Lotus.
It was a sad moment when he said goodbye to the Krasnoyar rugby supporters! They’ve been amazing!
Consequently he had some spare tickets for the England match. Outside the stadium he was approached by two Russians who had seen him on TV – it turned out they didn’t have tickets. Serendipity.
There have been several visits to shrines.
At one match Chris met a man wearing a Bath rugby shirt – it turns out we had met him before in the UK, at the British Motor Museum at Haydon. We gave him some Japanese chopsticks!
Chris enjoyed helping his Japanese friends celebrate their win over Ireland.
He finally collected Babushka so that shipping could be arranged. On the way to a restaurant (fishtail suchi) the 12,000 km mark was reached – outstanding!
He was put up in China in a flat with a garage, kindly lent by a new friend called Borr, and his wife.
He’s got another t-shirt – a Honda one, and somehow a Nankotsu chef’s apron!
Finally, time to take Babushka to the port. He was escorted by Mr Arai and HIS Austin!
Mr Arai then offered to put Chris up at his home until his passport is returned next week – it is being held as part of customs clearance for the car. Chris was disappointed that his trusty fire extinguisher is not allowed in the container so he gave it to the shipping agent. Who gave him a box of French biscuits.
He watched the Japan/Tonga match with Mr Arai, and went out to an English bar to watch the most recent England match.
So, he’s been wined, dined, and very well looked after. He’s going to be insufferable when he gets back home!!!
Join Chris Blakey and the sputniks as they travel from Corsham to Tokyo in under 5 minutes in this video trailer
Just been checking through various boxes of spare parts that were collected in preparation for the immense challenge of driving across the whole of Russia. How did you manage to complete such an awesome journey without this? (What is it?)
The final leg of the journey to the Rugby World Cup 2019. This video covers the adventure from the port of Vladivostock to Tokyo and the Rugby World Cup. It includes meeting Sputnik 6 and the breakdown and rescue of Babushka, a fabulous photoshoot with Mount Fuji as a backdrop, a resting showcase for Babushka and the World Cup Opening Ceremony.
The final day of driving all the way from the UK to Tokyo began with a photoshoot with mount Fuji as a splendid back drop. Chris is accompanied (in a 4×4) by photographer Junichi. Dear old Babushka was then led into Tokyo by two classic ladies.
Chris is now an honorary member of the Austin Healey Club of Japan!
Babushka now has ten days’ rest as part of the window display in the very fashionable British Luxury Brands Group store in central Tokyo.
Chris is not part of the display.
A great deal of sadness alongside this momentous occasion as Helen and Arthur travel to Brittany on behalf of Chris to say a final goodbye to a long-time friend who has lost his battle against cancer.