Friday, January 20, 2017

The rest of our Hakone trip. Black eggs and egg custard ice cream and a visit to the museum in Owakudani. A drive near Mt. Fuji to see the Lava and Ice Cave! And a walk through Suicide Forest in Aokigahara...

Okay, so where was I? Regarding our Hakone trip. It was still winter break. And we had just finished our breakfast at the hotel and checked out. And we went up the mountain and went to the "Famous Black Egg Place." We have not been there in....1 year? Two years at the most. However when we went there, it had changed a lot! Totally tons of new changes. All positive and all very nice. There are 2 black egg statues that many folks were standing near and taking pictures with. We did the same. Here's this view with the mountains behind the kids. I like this view a lot. 

Same statue exactly... it is just of the other side of the statue... but says the same exact thing's just a different background view. And there was another black egg statue on the other side of the building too... but folks were standing in line for about 5 minutes to take a pic with that statue. When this statue was the exact same. : )

There is a really nice museum here now. We visited the museum. And it was free for kids this day and like 100 yen for us adults on the day we went... so it was super cheap and all the museum things to look at...where in both Japanese and in English. So super nice! : )

Cool hair boys! And nice steamy hot mountain for sure. 

So cool to see this!

Black egg seats! These are new too! And super cute! :) The remodeling and updates of this place are so nice. 

People used to walk all the way up high and buy the famous black eggs that were cooked in the earth and hot spring water. However because of the fear a few years back... if the volcano would erupt or not. You can no longer walk up to the top of the mountain where people used to go and buy the eggs. They now have a place to buy the eggs in this area. And that's actually pretty nice. I actually like the ease of buying our eggs here, versus hiking up the mountain like before. : )

This is the best soft serve ice cream!!! Tastes like an egg custard. If you have ever eaten a taiyaki (fishy shaped custard) it tastes *exactly* like that rich heavenly custard.

Branden and Noah and why helloooo there Mt Fuji!!!
Hello Kitty in a black egg outfit! LOL! Behind Hello Kitty is the place to buy the eggs. Very convenient.

We bought a pack. The pack has 5 eggs, we gave 2 to Bran. And it comes with 1 pack of salt. So conserve that salt or bring your own. : ) It's like one small pack of McD's salt or Wendy's salt. Just 1 for the 5 eggs. So just a helpful FYI. : )

Yumm! And what do they taste like? Honestly... they taste just like... regular hard boiled eggs. They have zero weird or unusual flavor. 

Noah sitting on a black egg seat! Hahaha. : )

The famous black egg place is called Owakudani. And again...the name of this egg ice-cream could put off tourists. But it does not taste like eggs or like scrambled eggs or egg yolk. It taste like a rich decadent egg custard but in ice cream form. You will not be disappointed if you try this. We love it! : )

We 4 all enjoyed a rich decadent egg custard flavored ice cream. And we people watched and talked while eating our ice cream.

I snapped this pic while inside the museum. This photo says 1962! Seeing the tour buses and folks sight seeing from way back then. It has changed quite a bit since back then. 

We left the black egg place. And we usually head home! However...back in the end of December Noboru suggested and mentioned...he would really like to go and visit a place that he called the "ice cave." He said...I hope we can take the next day and go and drive up to the ice caves and he said he has always wanted to go and see one of them. There are a couple there. And I said...okay! Because you know...I'm agreeable like that! : ) So that's what we did. Heading directly toward Mt Fuji. Mt. Fuji you are gorgeous!

When we finally got to the city at the base of Mt. Fuji. Considering an hour had elapsed since we left the black egg place and about 3 hours since breakfast... we smartly decided to have lunch. I didn't feel like a burger or a sandwich and I can't eat a large fry. So, I picked an apple pie and a medium fry. I had no drink. I had brought my jasmine tea from the car inside McD's for me. : ) Everyone else got a combo with soda. 

Branden had a Big Mac combo and so did Noboru. As you can tell by this Mario happy meal....Noah had a chicken nuggets happy meal. Everyone was full. It was around noon. And perfect time for lunch. We left MickeyD's around 12;30pm.

Definitely in the city nearest Mt. Fuji. This is right at the base. This city. Where we had lunch.

This bus reads...."Preserve the Nature of Mt. Fuji." I agree, we should! : )

We had arrived at the Fugaku Lava Cave. The caves are all bumpy and textured because of the lava indeed. But Noboru is right calling caves. Because... there is ice in them. So they say lava cave. Noboru says ice cave. Ehhh....either way is right. : ) There were 2 ice/lava caves. But we went to this one.
Everyone must wear a safety helmet. Yes, Noboru and I did too. : ) 

Going down and it's super cold down there. 

Yes, they're not kidding....please watch your head!

Everything ice! Ahhh how gorgeous! And you can understand why Noboru in December kept saying..."let's visit the ice caves" : )  He definitely wasn't wrong! : )

Natural Refrigerator. No kidding! Bring a coat and some gloves. : ) What was stored down here? Silk worm eggs and tree seeds.

Hi BrannyMcB! and hi Noah! What a fun, 24 hours it has been! Long scenic drive. Hotel. Onsen soaking. A fabulous dinner and breakfast. Black eggs. A delicious egg-custard ice-cream. And now an ice cave! 

You can see the walls and ceiling created from the lava and all the ice. I'm glad Noboru suggested us visiting there... because it was educational. It was fun and interesting.
Coincidentally. Noboru's "ice cave" that he wanted us to visit. Just happened to be located in Aokigahara also known as the "Suicide Forest" @_@  See this super "mini" white van? Well you could tell that it has been parked here for a long while. And after we got back to our town...Noboru checked online and according to online this van has been left here and has been sitting here... for at LEAST the past year. @_@ And so it's obvious whoever left the car here... went into suicide forest to commit suicide. Super sad. : (  Also the license plate says...OSAKA. : (  Very sad. Truly.

Poor van that will most likely sit here for eternity now. : ( And poor person who owned this van.  Noboru asked me...if we'd like to walk through Suicide Forest. Why? Because well it's pretty well known. In America there was even a movie about this Suicide Forest last year. So a lot of westerners worldwide and Japanese do come to the suicide forest to be "looky lous" be nosy and look around. And yes...on the day we went.... there were quite a bunch of folks walking down the trails of the Suicide Forest. I was hesitant because of the kids. But the kids...being boys were eager to have a look. And Noboru was too. So, I said...okay we can go and have a look. But let's stay together and stay on the trail. 

This is such a sad sign! It says. And remember I am not a professional translator but it says basically this. "Your life is given from your parents. Think about your parents, siblings and children. Consult someone/talk with someone. Don't think about this by yourself." This is basically here for the people about to commit suicide. : ( Truly heartbreaking.

We found these pills on the ground of suicide forest and Noboru using his cell... prescription checked/med checked what these were... and turns out... these particular pills are given to people with psychological problems. @_@ Again wow very see these pills here. 
Walking with the fam-bam. 

You can see other folks in here. This was a man, wife and 2 kids in front of us and the dad had a conbini bag of drinks for his family to drink while they took an exciting walk. We could hear that family in front of us. They were asking the kids..."do you see anything" The kids were excited and saying ..."not yet" ...Granted I don't think they truly *wanted* to see something gruesome... just a fun day for that family. And honestly most normal folks who were obviously... not suicidal like that family and our family...were just having a walk around. And there were other folks in here too. 3 uni aged nerdy guys. One older lady and her husband and she had a cat on a leash and the cat was laying over her shoulders...again I am kidding you not. There were a whole bunch of nosy folks. Just looking around sight seeing. I think it's the same as in America when youth go to the cemetery at night...for the excitement and thrill. But again hoping not to run into any ghosts. Does that make sense? Also...side note. Folks say in here...your cell will not work and your compass won't work in here. I'm here to tell you... that's complete crap! And completely not true. Our cell phones worked just fine in here. And Noboru even checked after wards online...that a man who goes here all the time said... as long as you hold your compass above your waist it will 100% work. So...yes those things will work. 

See the lava trail. You do have to watch where you walk. Definitely watch your step. You can easily trip since it is not even ground. 

Yes there were bunches of people. And it was a Saturday. Less scary on a weekend, which was nice. 

Snake shaped tree roots.
Noboru found a spade.

And a cooking pot. Off the trail. 

He pointed at the pot with his foot. I was like...ahhhh don't touch could have some bad mojo on it or something! Hahaha. But seriously...better to be safe than sorry. : )
It is extremely dense. But honestly I saw the family in front of us go off trail for about 10 minutes and they came back to the trail just fine. And Noboru and the kids went off trail about 500 feet away and they came back just fine too. I'm a chicken and I stayed on the trail the entire time. : )

There are many caves. Many cracks and crevices for people to go and die in. If they wanted to. But please don't! 

I really debated sharing this particular picture with you. And there is one below that I am sharing too. That again...I wondered...should I share it with you guys or not. I have decided to share it. And please do me a favor. Look at the picture...enjoy the picture... but please don't steal my picture. Because it's mine. And it's my story to share. Not anyone else's. The entire time we were in Suicide Forest. We didn't feel anything weird. Not anything scary. We didn't feel anything heavy or evil or anything. We were just a happy family there... spending a nosy hour there. And then back in the car. When I got home and checked thoroughly of all the pics the next day. I honestly swear to G* guys I was shocked... by how many spirits or beings....orbs.. were captured in my pictures and photographs in Suicide Forest. See here. That brilliant blue on the left of Noah. It looks like a little bright glowing blue Tinkerbell orb. At the time I snapped this picture there was nothing we could see with our naked eyes. But on about 15 of my photos. And I snapped about 120 at Suicide Forest but about 15 of those had these brilliant glowing bright blue...beings...spirits...Tinkerbell flying things. And they were actually caught zipping around my family... in particular they were flying around my kids. Granted our family is very happy...we talk and laugh a lot. We were probably the chattiest family in the entire place. I think these spirits were definitely attracted to us...our family. This pic of Noah you see here. I took consecutive shots of Noah here and I think I snapped about 6 shots of him and I can see this brilliant glowing blue fairy (they have wings or something) glowing orbs zipping around Noah. On the left of him..on the right of him. One even got very close to Noah's face...trying to check Noah out...this orb... granted we could not see it when we were there... it was only noticeable after we got home and I checked the pictures. And I have another set of pics that another brilliant glowing blue orb or spirit was bouncing around Branden and Noah. So yes these glowing bright brilliant blue orbs were seen zipping around my kids and our family.  Was it...1 spirit in particular that attached to us that hour we were there? Or were there a few different ones attracted to our family? I am not sure. I have no answers. But...I did blow this picture up on my computer. And Noboru has looked at it. And Noboru says...whatever it NOT evil. He looked nice. And he did say flat out..."that's a spirit alright." A bright blue orb caught zipping around our family. This picture is actually amazing and so clear. 

See here it was zipping around still. The next shot is of it zipping near the top of Noah's head. 

The man off the trail with his bag of drinks for his family.

Bran going a little off trail looking inside a cave. Burning lava created all these caves. Same for the ice lava cave we went into earlier.

Curious Bran!

Noboru just getting back from his exploring! My 3 guys were having a blast in here. Me...I kept saying..."please be careful" and "don't get lost." : )

Curious kids!

Noboru checking his cell phone reception and compass/GPS on his phone. He said...whoever said we don't get reception in here is full of crap! @_@ Hahaha. I did not check. But...Noboru tested it and they both worked just fine. It has been Noboru verified. LOL. : )

What was in here nailed to a tree stump? We didn't check!

When I blew this picture up to full size there is a blue see through-ish yet glowing...orb...thing, this one was bigger in size then the one near Noah earlier... but it's there towards the bottom of this pic but you can't see it at this size. Again something was just crazy attracted to our family in there. And no..we didn't bring anything home with us. Haha. : )

We were starting to head back... out of suicide forest by now. 

I snapped a few pics on the way out just thick and dense the place looked. However...when I went home to look at my final pic...I saw a bright blue orb again in my final pic from suicide forest. I would like to think the spirit walked us out. See in the pic? I would like to think the orb/spirit walked us out and said..."Good luck and good-bye...nice family!" But yeah...I had zero idea the entire time we were there... that there was any bright blue *anything* following us the entire time. Not until we were home. And after the fact. Anyways.....
We got back to our town around 11:30pm! We left Suicide Forest around 4pm. And we started driving. Around 6pm. We stopped for dinner. At what else...Italian obviously. : ) We went to Jolly Pasta in Sagamihara. Their jalapeno pizza is divine. It's so flavorful and good. They have a drink bar... so endless drinks if you'd like. Coffee, teas sodas. Juices. Nice drink bar. Nice restaurant.

Their pasta here is so divine. The spicy garlic cheese pasta. Major yum! We all went to the restroom at Jolly Pasta and then we drove for hours and then we stopped at 7-11 I picked a hot coffee. The kids each picked a mugicha and a snack for the very long car ride we had still. And like I said, we arrived at home around 11:30pm. The kids usually will shower. But they were so dog tired that they brushed their teeth and went straight to sleep. I put my hair into a messy top knot. Jumped in the shower, washed my face (makeup off) and washed and soaped and scrubbed my body. I dried off. Put my sleep shirt on and went to sleep. Noboru jumped in the shower but I must have zonked because... I don't even remember hearing him get out of the shower. We were all just *that* tired. It was a fun 32 hours. A full 31-32 hours. Longer than 24 hours actually...closer to 32 hours but ykwim. : ) I am so glad we kicked off a whole near year.....with a fun family get away. We kicked off 2017 with a happy family trip. Some much needed rest and relaxation. And we were glad to be back home. : ) So anyway...that was our Hakone trip. The long and short of it. : )