Visiting Ito on Monday on the first day of my JR pass I was at the beach when I noticed a bright red fire brigade rescue truck, lights strobing, parked on one of the quays. A few moments later I saw an ambulance running blues and twos turning onto the pier to join its big cousin. I assumed there had been some sort of accident and prepared to continue on my way when a big helicopter swung in from over the sea, siren blaring, heading for the same quay. The logo on the side read "Doctor Heli" so I assumed this was more serious than a simple car accident or someone collapsing; Ito is a resort town with lots of old folks either in residence in care homes or visiting on a day out. Think of it as Eastbourne with more sun and scuba divers.
The helicopter landed and a couple of jumpsuited medical types leapt out as the ambulance pulled up along side it. After some discussion things slowed down a bit; Doctor Heli's engine shut off and the crew helped arrange the folding blue tarpaulin they deploy in such circumstances to screen the gurney from gawking onlookers (like yours truly, in this case) as it was moved in no great rush from the ambulance to the back door of the helicopter. After a few more minutes Doctor Heli started his engines, lifted off and swung out over the sea heading for his secret medical lair or wherever he operates from (I understand remote islands with supposedly-dormant volcanoes are popular this year). Ganbatte Doctor Heli! Next time you might not need that blue tarpaulin.