Saturday, October 6, 2007

Historical Village Of Hokkaido

SEPTEMBER 12, 2007 - Part 2
After being disappointed to find there were nothing in that Visitor Center, we made our walk to the final location in Nopporo Forest Park - 北海道開拓の村 (Historical Village of Hokkaido). We were made to walk for another 2 kilometer and by the time we were there, it was already half past 1.
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The Historical Village of Hokkaido covers an area of some 54 hectares and this outdoor museum was opened to the public on April 16, 1983 to preserve olden days structures and to show what pioneer's life was like in Hokkaido.
About 60 typical structures of the Meiji and Taisho eras (mid 19th century to early 20th century) are restored in a site which is divided into Town, Fishing Village, Farm Village and Mountain Village sectors. Each structures is reproduced authentically with inside displays.
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Kaitakushi Sapporo Headquarters of the Colonization
The first building we noticed when we got into the area was Kaitakushi Sapporo Headquarters of the Colonization (Visitor's Center). This is a replica of Kaitakushi Sapporo Headquarters of the Colonization that burned down in 1879. The original structure was made of wood, but the rebuilt version is a concrete so that the inside could be used as an information center, training room, auditorium and lounge. (Sapporo 1873).
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Kondo's Dyeing Shop
Founded in 1898, Asahikawa's oldest dyeing shop features a traditional architectural style. (Asahikawa, 1913. Two storey wooden structure).
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Kurumasa Inn
Until 1984, this inn flourished as a lodging for travelers or a place to wait for trains (Asahikawa, 1919. Two storey wooden structure).
When we were standing at the main door, the people inside invited us to go in and take a look around the building. We had a chat with one old lady who was among the retired locals and volunteered to help out at the village, doing simple maintenance like keeping the place clean.
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Apparently, the building we were under that time was a rebuilt version using the materials from the ruins of the original building in Asahikawa some time ago. There was a flood in Asahikawa and it actually carried off the ruins down somewhere far from Asahikawa.
Later we went up the first floor and have a look around the building. Visitors are actually prohibited to enter into the exhibition area. But there were only three of us at that time.
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When I got to the kitchen part of the building, I came across a bathtub. Wooden bathtub may not seem to be unusual.
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But not a wooden toilet.
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Before we left, I asked the old lady to camwhore have a photo taken with me. Without any hesitation, she agreed.
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I never knew her camwhore skill is so much better than me.
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Urukawa Church
A settler's company that was founded by puritan Christians in Kobe build Urukawa Church. Used as a meeting hall and a place for education, it provided spiritual support for immigrants. (Urukawa, 1894. Partial two storey wooden structure).
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Takei Sake Brewery
The Takei Sake Brewery not only brewed and sold sake (rice wine) but also sold general merchandise. "Matsu no Tsuyu" and "Tama no Kawa" sake were brewed here. (Tomari village, 1886. Partial two storey wooden structure).
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Police Box at Minami 1-Jo

This "red brick police box", as it is called by local residents, kept watch over the town until 1917 and features an exceptional Japanese-style roof. (Sapporo, 1911. One storey brick structure).
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Takeoka's Grocery
Rice, general goods and kitchenware were sold here. The semi-circular eaves at the entrance reflect a Western influence. (Shizunai, 1898. One storey wooden structure).
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Shimauta Post Office
When the post office opened in 1886, herring fishing was flourishing and the post office was used for money remittance by fishermen who came from Honshu to Hokkaido to work (Setana, 1902. Partial two storey wooden structure).
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Hokkai Middle School
The first private junior high school in Hokkaido had its origin in the students of Sapporo Agricultural College teaching English. It features a western-style design. (Sapporo, 1909. One storey wooden structure).
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What makes every single building in this village unique is that there were human-sized dummies in almost every building. For the better ones, there were sound effects as well.
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Horse drawn trolleys in summer and sleighs in winter provide transportation for visitors along the main street, which is lined with old wooden and stone buildings. Besides, there are many delightful entertainments throughout the year.
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We were on our way to the Mountain Village and the Farm Village. Along the way, there was a suspension bridge, called 釣橋 (Fishing Bridge).
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We later continued our walk.
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The Wood-Cutter's Shanty
Temporary accommodation to people involved in tree felling, logging, yarding or horse driving on the mountain.
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The logging season in Hokkaido is winter, when the snow covered ground facilitates the hauling of logs. (Shimokawa, late Taisho era. One storey wooden structure).
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Charcoal Making Shed

Hokkaido was once Japan's leading charcoal producer. This small charcoal making kiln supplemented the settler's income before they could harvest crops in their adopted land. (late Taisho era. One storey brick structure).
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Ogawa Family Dairy Barn

A dairy barn built with references to an American architectural style by Yoshimi Ogawa, a graduate of Sapporo Agricultural College. The balloon frame structure is a special feature. (Sapporo, late Taisho era. Two storey wooden structure).
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Kikuta Family Farmhouse
Tsunekichi Kikuta was a member of Hokuetsu Shokuminsha, a settler's company founded in Niigata prefecture. His farmhouse has a traditional Niigata architectural style. (Ebetsu 1893. Two storey wooden structure).
Just next to the farmhouse, there were fruits and vegetables farm. I saw apple trees there.
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Although we didn't manage to go to the apple farm in Aomori, we still got to see apple trees from up-close afterall. After confirming with the person in charge there that it was fine for us to pluck those apples, we started our apple feast. Just the perfect time to have something to eat as we haven’t eat anything for lunch yet by that time.
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That was the best apple I ever had in my life. It was sweet, juicy and crunchy.
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Aoyama Family's Structure for Herring Fishing
The Aoyamas were a large family who fished for herring along the shores of Otaru. Their building consists of seven auxiliary facilities, including fishing net and rice storehouse.
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The right part of the main house is the family's residence, and the left is the residence for the fishermen who came to Hokkaido to work. (Otaru, Main house, 1919. Two storey wooden structure).
There were just two things that caught my attention in the building. The people those days seemed to go for a square-shape toilet bowl box.
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If you still remember my entry on the toilet cubicle in Japan, this is even more advanced, or should I say hilarious.
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A triangular shaped cubicle, and there was no pipe connected to it. Perhaps they have to empty it everytime it is full.
After spending almost 3 hours in the village, we finally called it a day. Before you look at the next photo, I would like to point it out here that it was the first and the last time I will ever pose with the 'peace' sign. I am never a fan of such pose, although I know the Japanese do it more often than I could even imagine.
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Today In History: Calvin posed with the 'peace' sign.
We returned to the city center and started looking for dinner. One of us decided to go for Indian food. I have not eaten any Indian food since I came here and that is about half a year already. We went Taj Mahal. Not that white castle in India though.
The moment we step into the restaurant, the ohh-so-high Indian music was playing. The interior at least, made us feel we were not in Japan, for a while. A Japanese waitress came to take our orders and straight away she asked if we were Malaysians. We have Malaysian face, according to her.
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Apparently, this restaurant is popular among the Malaysians in Sapporo.
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As a starter, we shared a rather huge piece of naan.
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Then, tandoori chicken.
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And finally, the main meal. It was chicken bryani rice.
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It made me missed Malaysian food even more after that dinner. And this is the photo I took just before I went for my dinner.
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Michelle, you asked for it, you get it =)

10 comments:

kokhong said...

you cant find that much heritage here in kyushu... all bombed flat in WW2 air raids...sigh..

kokhong said...

you cant find that much heritage here in kyushu... all bombed flat in WW2 air raids...sigh..

calvin said...

@ kok hong:
your place is already a heritage =P

michelleg said...

why is kh's place a heritage?

i can't stop laughing at that pic of u with the old lady!!

oh and this post is like an educational magazine or something. lolz.. =)

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
that pic, very funny la now?

michelleg said...

hahahehehoho :P

lasilasi said...

lol but u look kawai with the V sign

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
-__________-ll

calvin said...

@ lasilasi:
^.^

Jen Nee said...

Hello Calvin,

Hi. My name is JenNee. May know how much time you need to spend at Hokkaido Historical Village?

Thank you