I think writing out translations would be useful because it forces to analyze everything and translate every grammatical nuance. So when you go back to read it again I bet it would be very well cemented in your mind.
I don’t do this though because I have not enough time, and am lazy haha.
I’m also trying to ‘think in Japanese’, Like understand it without translating it to English. This was definitely hard to do at first but I’ve been doing so much reading in Japanese for the last 15 weeks that I’m finally getting to that point. I took an extensive reading class and the rules are reading with out looking up any words, and the words you don’t know you skip. But this only works when you know, I think it was 98 or 90% of the words so that the words you don’t know are learned through context or picture. And I did that for 200 minutes every week on top reading grammar materiel and recently the current novel. Because of that I think graded readers work best for this method, but not the novel we’re reading now.
At first I would look every little thing to be exact, but I actually like the approach of just extensively reading. I’m kinda of doing something in the middle with the current book. But I read a little bit of the next book and it seems super easy(at least the first story was) I could read that with the extensive reading approach, it was very much like a graded reader to me.
But I haven’t gotten to these chapters yet, so after I do I’ll let you know know what I think about your translation. I did read a little and up until the ‘I turned my feet part’ and I think your translation is spot on!