I wrote down few phrases in japanese and went hitchiking towards the I read abandoned jungle theme park about online.
It was super easy. a lot of japanese react as if someone is doing something insane and exciting and are happy about it. Most of them are also too shy to stop and they would even cover their smiling faces if I maintained eye contact for too long <3
Izu peninsula has two sides, people call them a female and male side, one is full of fine sand beaches and the other is made of rough steep vulcanic rocks.. I'm guessing that strong waves tend to hit it from the female side.
My favorite ride was this businessman, it seemed that what was happening was a way bigger adventure for him then for me. He would start laughing histerically out of excitement whenever I'd speak. So naturally, I wanted to speak as much as possible but that was hard as he didn't understand any english.
Arrived to Irozaki port-o fairly quickly and started a hike up the hill towards where the jungle theme park is supposed to be.
Found bunch of abandoned buildings and infrastructure at the top but couldn't find the main dome, ended up exploring the peninsula.
Climbed an antenna tower to look around (kinda. half way. it was scarry. note to self - learn how to make a harness out of climbing rope, I could have secured myself). found the dome - its not a dome. didn't look at the online photos good enough, and found a coast that looked so amazing that it stole my attention. I wanted to quickly check it out before heading out to the park but the place was great and I ended up spending the night.
Everything seemed totally devoid of life but it turns out, the place becomes a spiderland during the night. I don't know what they eat, each other? I tucked my shirt in my pants.
I'm super happy with the funny-shoes. Japanese people say b ooooooooooo ninja shoesb and they are right! they are quiet and great for climbing and I have a lot of control on the rough terrain. a downside is that you freak people (including yourself) out, and need to talk about them a lot. its not worth it in the city.
It was a great night. I realized that I was alone for the first time in three months. There was a huge lighthouse spotlight sweeping the panorama and big ships passing by on their way towards port of Tokyo. The next morning I discovered that all the bread I bought is filled with chocolate and that all the cans I have are the same discusting fish. Had a breakfast that stimulated my taste buds and left to quickly explore the rest of the theme park.
Turns out, a few years have passed and big parts of the park are overgrown now. It was quite late and quite hot and quite overgrown and there was noone around to encourage me so I decided to keep going towards Kyoto and give up on getting inside.
on the way there I couldn't pass on the opportunity to sneak into some classuy star hotel onsen for the third time.
ok, enough writing!
I'll finish this later or never. pictures are on Flickr
Japan has a notoriously high suicide rate, which doesn't seem entirely justified considering it's 10th in the world, with south korea for example being 50% worse.
This forest was always shifty, but its popularity grew due to a contraversial book, The Complete Manual of Suicide where it is described as the perfect place to die. Over 100 bodies per year are discovered there, a lot more probably don't ever get found.
I don't want to repeat things too much, vice has a good 20 minute documentary on it.
To make things comically creepy, the forest lies on some large magnetic rocks, which make compasses useless. my gps seems to rely on a digital compass, so I quickly rehersed the night before on how to orientate myself by the sun.
The place is fairly touristic, it has a few hiking trails, and it lies just below mount Fuji. When we got there they told us that a black bear was sighted today exactly where we were going. We ended up yelling and clapping our hands a lot to scare it away. We walked a lot, not knowing exactly where we should go, and got off the trail a lot, relying on a bad tourist map.
A small culture grew around suicides in the forest. for example, people that think that they might change their minds, walk in leaving a trail of (usually nylon) string, which makes parts of the forest look really strange, with nylon strings going everywhere. The whole place is full of strange objects that seem to have been used in ritual like situations. Compass and gps ended up working well for the most part, with occasional crazyness.