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Hachijojima Onsen + Natsume Cafe 2018.09.14

I bought a special second class ticket from Mikurajima to Hachijojima since the journey wasn't as long. It was around 2000yen which is pretty reasonable for a 1-1.5h ride. The second class area still has around 8 spots but it isn't a separate room so lights are central. I'm not really sure how the configuration was originally, but I assume only blankets are provided. Since it was the second last stop, a majority of the people had already left, but there was a family still in my compartment. Lights were off so I decided to nap like them. There wasn't a blanket at my seat number, but there was a used one sprawled unfolded the seat over so I just used my jacket... kind of disappointing for second class.

I chatted with the family when the lights were turned on nd they were nice. Turns out they're Hachijojima locals and went to Tokyo with their daughter for Disneyland. The girl showed me her Minnie balloon and some souvenirs and we played a bit. The boat was experiencing a lot of turbulence after about the halfway mark so I was worried we wouldn't dock. The dad got a call from his friend who told him it was raining really hard >_< Poof, there went my plans of outdoor hike and onsen at Uramigataki falls -_- I quickly rearranged my plans and decided to go to an indoor onsen so I wouldn't be as miserably wet. Since I only had a rain jacket so the family gave me an umbrella. All the good karma for them!

The boat arrived about 15min late but we luckily docked. When I stepped onto the ramp, I found that 'raining hard' was an understatement... I opened the umbrella and it was so windy, it flipped! Fortunately, I stood the other way and it flipped back to normal. Needless to say, my already drenched shoes (from the dolphin boat) were soaked to a new level!

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You can't see the rain in this pic, but it was seriously heavy! I think the weather check said 18mm/3hours... I bravely ventured out to try and find the bus station but visibility was pretty bad so I gave up and went back to the building dejected. They closed the doors to the pier building so I couldn't even go to information to get them to call a taxi or anything >_<

At this point, I'd almost resolved to sit here for the next 5 hours... the taxis that did stop in front were all ordered and I didn't have a phone that could dial international (I only bought a data sim). There was an older gentleman waiting under the canopy too so I asked him if he could call a taxi for me since my phone didn't work. He asked where I was going and I showed him Fureai no Yu, the closer indoor onsen. He said it was on his way home so he could take me!!! Thank the Lord for all the nice people I met on this side trip!

He had a little van with gardening tools in the back and he said he had some kind of a job related to plants (my vocab isn't great for specialized jargon so I just replied with the typical へぇー). Since he'd grown up on Hachijojima and I said it was my first time here, he pretty much gave me a tour and history of any landmarks we passed and some history of the island ^^

Like this road on the south side of the island with nothing below it but a long way down... it took a long time to build and it's gotten hit by earthquakes before so many people have died. Boats also don't dock on this side because of the waves. Apparently the only thing that way was something military.

Luckily the onsen was open despite the terrible rain! He dropped me off and regrettably, I couldn't offer him anything besides utmost gratitude.

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I was the only customer at this point so I had the place to myself! It was a cute bath house costing 600yen but they had both indoor and outdoor baths. There was a long indoor bath and a beautiful outdoor bath with rocks and a shelter over it. After my first soak, I went to the TV area to relax and get a drink. I hadn't thought that highly of the facility until I saw this...

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+1 star for nyanko-sensei towel! I had some tea, senbei and sat in the massage chair for an enjoyable time ^^

I headed over to the airport after my second dip and wow the taxi was crazy expensive for a 13min ride! I guess it's hard to make a living here otherwise. I also wasn't about to walk in the rain for an hour wearing my still digustingly wet shoes...

Lunch at the airport was Ashitaba soba! Really tasty and clean flavor. Warm soba always warms me up!

Fortunately, the rain stopped about half an hour before my flight so there were no problems. Well, the only problem was my shoes were starting to smell from being wet for 3 days -_- I felt so sorry for the people sitting next to me on the plane orz


Natsume Yuujinchou Collaboration Cafe

I went to the Natsume x Omotesando Box Cafe Space for dinner when I got back! (After stuffing newspaper and charcoal in my smelly shoes and washing my feet with an excessive amount of soap)

The restaurant is on the basement level down some stone stairs but there are some nyanko pics even on the steps leading up to it. I didn't reserve so they offered me two options: tighter seating now or more space in half an hour. I had no problem being a little squished so I chose to go in right away. There was still ample room even though it was a corner table. You get a placemat at random of these two designs.

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Nyankos on the wall, posters, and TVs playing some movie footage!

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Food was actually really tasty! Great volume and very pretty. You can't keep the triple nyanko cutout but you can take the styrofoam ones with the picnic lunch box. And I don't recommend taking home the chukyuu seaweed either XD  I also got the latte with cinnamon flavor but not the bottle.


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This place is well known for their bread so they had manjuus with most things... and some kind of mutant marshmallow/manju nyanko-sensei topping on the red bean ice drink which I'm glad I didn't order.


Merchandise corner!

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The collaboration is on until 10/21/2018 so I highly recommend it if you can go!
https://natsume-movie-cafe.jp/tokyo_information/

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
willeke4439
Sep. 28th, 2018 02:49 am (UTC)
If I remember correctly, the blankets in the second class on the ferry are rental items - you could get them for something like 150 yen at the information counter. (but the only time I used them I just picked up a discarded one that somebody had left behind when they disembarked, too XD )

That pic of Hachijoujima looks so omnious, totally different from when I went. Too bad you couldn't go to the outdoor onsen, but Fureai no Yu is nice too if it's your only option. I went there too after a hike, but I didn't notice the Nyanko-sensei towel! (Or maybe they didn't have it out at that time...) That's awesome!

The people there are all too willing to help, aren't they? I've gotten rides with people more than a handful of times now (including just the other day at Mt. Aso), and people always go above and beyond just a simple ride, showing you around places and telling you lots of interesting things ^o^ (I wonder if it was the same farmer who I rode with in his van that one time, what would be the chances? =P )

The other dish at the Natsume cafe looks delicious too, I'd totally go back to try that if I had the time >w< .
chiisai_hime
Sep. 29th, 2018 05:46 am (UTC)
Ohh that explains the blankets! Haha, I was spoiled from 1st class XD

It's so amazing how kind people are! Even moreso when you're traveling yourself I think :) Haha, that'd be a crazy coincidence! I feel like he worked at the botanical gardens because he talked about some research he was doing (that's where he completely lost me @_@)

I tried to talk to the onsen attendant about the nyanko-sensei towel and she had no idea what it was XD we just ended up talking about how cute cats were...
willeke4439
Sep. 30th, 2018 12:48 am (UTC)
The guy who picked me up worked at a farm near the onsen itself, so it must've been a different guy then =P

Haha, that's cute. Maybe she just bought it because of the cute cat, or maybe received it as a gift...
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )