Ogimashi, Japan

An Historical-Virtual Japan


Lena in Flight
The dark and demonic side of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni: Lena flies with a cleaver.
spontaneous session
Satoko, Rena and Keiichii Maebara pose for occasional photographers
Fans & Photographers
Occasional photographers make their own images of famous characters they have known for a long time.
Rika
Rika stands out from the Shinto setting of the Hachiman-jinja temple.
Harvest
Kigurumi de Satoko opens her arms to new Portuguese friends.
Creator and Kigurumi
Kigurumi of the character Satoko from Higurashi no Naku Koro ni and one of the series' creators, Chikima.
Mion and Hanyu
Kigurumis from Mion and Hanyu at the temple of Hachiman in Ogimashi.
kigurumis Mion and Keiichii Maebara-Hachiman-Ogimashi-Japan temple
Mion and Keiichii Maebara talk by a tree near Hachiman temple.
Kigurumi Trio
Satoko, Mion and Keiichii Maebara
poses
Rena, Satoko, Mion and Keiichii Maebara, the latter, the one who, in the series, unravels most of the mysteries.
tube message
Message left at Hachiman temple. by a young manga fan.
Ogimashi
View of Ogimashi at nightfall.
Mion and Keiichii Maebara
Mion and Keiichii Maebara share the charm of Ogimashi's autumnal landscape.
Satoko & Rika
Satoko and Rika talk on the steps of Hachiman's temple in Ogimashi.
"Higurashi no Naku Koro never” was a highly successful Japanese animation and computer game series. In Ogimashi, Shirakawa-Go village, we live with a group of kigurumi of their characters.

"onikakushi-ken”, the first electronic title of the series “Higurashi no Naku Koro never” (“When Cicadas Cry”) was released in Japan in August 2002 for PC.

It came out in a visual novel style and based on the NScripter engine, information that, these days, will only say something to the most informed programmers.

The enigmatic plot of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni.

The story took place in a fictional rural village called Hinamizawa. The place is apparently peaceful and quiet.

Until the newcomer protagonist Keiichi Maebara discovers that, in the last four years, one person has died and another disappeared during the Watanagashi-matsuri (Floating Cotton Festival) that there pays homage to the village guardian Oyashiro-sama.

Throughout the games, intrigued and determined, the teenager investigates the various mysteries she is faced with.

Not satisfied with the already complex plot passed to boards and computers, the creators took the trouble to develop an equally or more exhaustive and, surprisingly macabre, historical context.

It was this dynamic dichotomy between the prevailing loathsome look between the characters and the malevolent involvement behind it that attracted and retained the series' fans.

Ryukishi07 the Mentor of the Series … Bloodthirsty

His main mentor, Ryukishi07 (Knight of the Dragon), confessed himself to be an inveterate fan of the electronic-Japanese epic “final Fantasy”. By the way, the Ryugu Reina of “Higurashi no Naku Koro never” – one of his 6 teenagers – was inspired by the semi-eponymous heroine of that other production.

According to Ryukishi's imagination, centuries before, Watanagashi was known as the Festival of the Floating Guts.

It served for the villagers to cleanse their sins with the blood of a tortured human using tools available in the fictional Furude temple.

Something that was done by a meticulous process that involved driving nails into each knuckle of the victim's fingers before a priest removed his stomach and intestines with a hoe-like instrument. This was followed by an intricate dance.

The entrails and the body would then be thrown into the river and float with the current, thus symbolizing the turning away from people's sins.

Kigurumis Mion and Hanyu, Hachiman temple, Ogimachi, Japan

Kigurumis from Mion and Hanyu at the temple of Hachiman in Ogimashi.

In more recent times, the original Watanagashi had begun to be seen as too violent and cruel. The villagers thus adapted the other meaning of the prefix cotton wool (cotton instead of intestines).

From then on, they contributed old garments whose cotton would be removed and gathered into a large futon.

The priest proceeded to gut the Futon instead of an unfortunate human and it would be up to each villager to remove a piece of the filling to float in the river.

Satoko and Rika, Hachiman temple, Ogimachi, Japan

Satoko and Rika talk on the steps of Hachiman's temple in Ogimashi.

Higurashi no Naku Koro ni: more than a Series, a Long Saga

Several other events and past connections spice up the unfolding of the saga that follows the most unexpected formulas of psychological suspense.

As of August 2006, there were already eight games. “Higurashi no Naku Koro ni” was so successful that it justified the release of animated CDs. Shortly thereafter, the manga adaptation followed, published in the magazine “Gangan Powered” with illustrations by the famous artist Karin Suzuragi.

Almost at the same time, the anime version “Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai” and a set of original video animations came out.

Messages, Hachiman Temple, Ogimashi, Japan

Message left at Hachiman temple by a young manga fan.

The success, increasingly international, has never ceased to grow and this last experience, in particular, justified, in 2008, the film adaptation of the series.

The Historical and Virtual Discovery of Shirakawa-Go

Last time we toured Japan, we felt the same inspiring appeal as Ryukishi07 by Shirakawa-Go, an interior and semi-rural stronghold of Hida region  UNESCO classified as a World Heritage Site in order to protect its culture.

In particular, the houses gassho-zukuri ("praying hands"), perfected over the centuries in order to resist the capricious weather in one of the most snowy areas on Earth.

We visited the place with high expectations which, despite the almost inevitable excessive flow of visitors to the islands of the rising sun, ended up being fulfilled.

We have reached the end of the second day of exploring the area. The sun has already disappeared behind the steep slope of Hakusan Mountain. The night is announced over the Shokawa Valley.

Ogimachi, Shirakawa go, Japan

View of Ogimashi at nightfall.

The Meeting with the Kigurumis of the Series and the Author, in Ogimashi

Without any warning, the mysterious setting of the Hachiman-jinja temple is invaded by a bunch of kigurumis (people-animated puppets).

Their gaudy, candid figures wander over the uneven staircase. They insinuate and interact with movements and poses so expressive and sentimental that they could seduce the rudest of humans.

A coordinated group of photographers, who react to any request, pursue them, under the relaxed and affable supervision of Chikima, one of the creative sui generis who then developed the series.

Kigurumis, Hachiman Temple, Ogimachi

Rena, Satoko, Mion and Keiichii Maebara, the latter, the one who, in the series, unravels most of the mysteries.

The Passage of the Series to the Cinema Screens

In the time that passed, the film had had an excellent box office return. It justified the studio's bet on a cinematographic sequel “Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Chikai”, a title that, in good Japanese fashion, once again explored the double meaning of words: naku can mean both “sounds made by non-human organisms” and “crying” .

In each episode of the long saga, the protagonist discovers that one of her friends had been demonized and committed the crimes. To top things off, as a rule, the victims are their own friends: Mion, Shion, Rena, Satoko, Hanyū and Rika.

The story unfolds in question chapters, answer chapters and some extra ones. Parallel endings are also created, some terrifying and some milder.

At the end of 2009, it was released for Playstation “Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni Matsuri: Kakera Asobi".

In this version, if players make certain decisions, they can generate a more terrible or pleasant outcome for two different purposes of the series: "Miotsukushi-hen" (Drainage of the Channel) which is, according to the author, the true or happiest ending "matsuribayashi-hen” (Festival Music).

The Series that Comes to Life among Ogimashi's Pines and Cypresses

When we meet the kigurumis, despite the somewhat chilling scenery formed by the Japanese pine and cypress trees of the Ogimashi forest, the group is safe and exhibits their best expressions of empathy.

Kigurumi Rika, Hachiman Temple, Ogimashi, Japan

Rika stands out from the Shinto setting of the Hachiman-jinja temple.

We took the opportunity to enter, for a moment, in that improbable socializing and we photographed in her company and in Chikima's without much verbal communication for more than a few “sugoys” (cool, cute) and “arigatos” or were it not for those Japanese, like most, incapable of using foreign languages ​​and, for us, mere lazy students of their demanding dialect.

Chikima and Kigurumi, Hachiman Temple, Ogimashi, Japan

Kigurumi of the character Satoko from Higurashi no Naku Koro ni and one of the series' creators, Chikima.

There are only a few minutes left for the dark to completely take over the valley and the onlookers who accompanied the promotional action have already disbanded.

the roofs of gassho they give off white smoke with the smell of wood right next to the makeshift parking lot where we had left the rental car, in a sort of yard full of loaded persimmons. There, we witnessed an unexpected demystification of the series.

We find the van of Chikima's entourage near ours.

After another day's work, the young people who animated the seven kigurumis took off their hair and suits and turned into flesh-and-blood teenagers – more bone than flesh, by the way.

In their underwear, in a near-zero temperature, they were shivering with cold, eager to change that unpleasant end.

Ogimashi, Japan

A Village Faithful to the A

Ogimashi reveals a fascinating heritage of Japanese adaptability. Located in one of the most snowy places on Earth, this village has perfected houses with real anti-collapse structures.
Tokyo, Japan

Japanese Style Passaport-Type Photography

In the late 80s, two Japanese multinationals already saw conventional photo booths as museum pieces. They turned them into revolutionary machines and Japan surrendered to the Purikura phenomenon.
Kyoto, Japan

Survival: The Last Geisha Art

There have been almost 100 but times have changed and geishas are on the brink of extinction. Today, the few that remain are forced to give in to Japan's less subtle and elegant modernity.
Kyoto, Japan

A Combustible Faith

During the Shinto celebration of Ohitaki, prayers inscribed on tablets by the Japanese faithful are gathered at the Fushimi temple. There, while being consumed by huge bonfires, her belief is renewed.
Tokyo, Japan

The Emperor Without Empire

After the capitulation in World War II, Japan underwent a constitution that ended one of the longest empires in history. The Japanese emperor is, today, the only monarch to reign without empire.
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo's fashion

In ultra-populous and hyper-coded Japan, there is always room for more sophistication and creativity. Whether national or imported, it is in the capital that they begin to parade the new Japanese looks.
Tokyo, Japan

The Fish Market That Lost its Freshness

In a year, each Japanese eats more than their weight in fish and shellfish. Since 1935, a considerable part was processed and sold in the largest fish market in the world. Tsukiji was terminated in October 2018, and replaced by Toyosu's.
Tokyo, Japan

Disposable Purrs

Tokyo is the largest of the metropolises but, in its tiny apartments, there is no place for pets. Japanese entrepreneurs detected the gap and launched "catteries" in which the feline affections are paid by the hour.
Hiroshima, Japan

Hiroshima: a City Yielded to Peace

On August 6, 1945, Hiroshima succumbed to the explosion of the first atomic bomb used in war. 70 years later, the city fights for the memory of the tragedy and for nuclear weapons to be eradicated by 2020.
Japan

The Beverage Machines Empire

There are more than 5 million ultra-tech light boxes spread across the country and many more exuberant cans and bottles of appealing drinks. The Japanese have long since stopped resisting them.
Magome-Tsumago, Japan

Magome to Tsumago: The Overcrowded Path to the Medieval Japan

In 1603, the Tokugawa shogun dictated the renovation of an ancient road system. Today, the most famous stretch of the road that linked Edo to Kyoto is covered by a mob eager to escape.
Nikko, Japan

The Tokugawa Shogun Final Procession

In 1600, Ieyasu Tokugawa inaugurated a shogunate that united Japan for 250 years. In her honor, Nikko re-enacts the general's medieval relocation to Toshogu's grandiose mausoleum every year.
Kyoto, Japan

The Kyoto Temple Reborn from the Ashes

The Golden Pavilion has been spared destruction several times throughout history, including that of US-dropped bombs, but it did not withstand the mental disturbance of Hayashi Yoken. When we admired him, he looked like never before.
Okinawa, Japan

Ryukyu Dances: Centuries old. In No Hurry.

The Ryukyu kingdom prospered until the XNUMXth century as a trading post for the China and Japan. From the cultural aesthetics developed by its courtly aristocracy, several styles of slow dance were counted.
Miyajima, Japan

Shintoism and Buddhism with the Tide

Visitors to the Tori of Itsukushima admire one of the three most revered scenery in Japan. On the island of Miyajima, Japanese religiosity blends with Nature and is renewed with the flow of the Seto Inland Sea.
Iriomote, Japan

The Small Tropical Japanese Amazon of Iriomote

Impenetrable rainforests and mangroves fill Iriomote under a pressure cooker climate. Here, foreign visitors are as rare as the yamaneko, an elusive endemic lynx.
Nara, Japan

The Colossal Cradle of the Japanese Buddhism

Nara has long since ceased to be the capital and its Todai-ji temple has been demoted. But the Great Hall remains the largest ancient wooden building in the world. And it houses the greatest bronze Vairocana Buddha.
Takayama, Japan

From the Ancient Japan to the Medieval Hida

In three of its streets, Takayama retains traditional wooden architecture and concentrates old shops and sake producers. Around it, it approaches 100.000 inhabitants and surrenders to modernity.
Okinawa, Japan

The Little Empire of the Sun

Risen from the devastation caused by World War II, Okinawa has regained the heritage of its secular Ryukyu civilization. Today, this archipelago south of Kyushu is home to a Japan on the shore, anchored by a turquoise Pacific ocean and bathed in a peculiar Japanese tropicalism.
Kyoto, Japan

An Almost Lost Millennial Japan

Kyoto was on the US atomic bomb target list and it was more than a whim of fate that preserved it. Saved by an American Secretary of War in love with its historical and cultural richness and oriental sumptuousness, the city was replaced at the last minute by Nagasaki in the atrocious sacrifice of the second nuclear cataclysm.
Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, Masai Convivial
Safari
Masai Mara, Kenya

A Journey Through the Masai Lands

The Mara savannah became famous for the confrontation between millions of herbivores and their predators. But, in a reckless communion with wildlife, it is the Masai humans who stand out there.
Yak Kharka to Thorong Phedi, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal, Yaks
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit 11th: yak karkha a Thorong Phedi, Nepal

Arrival to the Foot of the Canyon

In just over 6km, we climbed from 4018m to 4450m, at the base of Thorong La canyon. Along the way, we questioned if what we felt were the first problems of Altitude Evil. It was never more than a false alarm.
Architecture & Design
Cemeteries

the last address

From the grandiose tombs of Novodevichy, in Moscow, to the boxed Mayan bones of Pomuch, in the Mexican province of Campeche, each people flaunts its own way of life. Even in death.
Totems, Botko Village, Malekula, Vanuatu
Adventure
Malekula, Vanuatu

Meat and Bone Cannibalism

Until the early XNUMXth century, man-eaters still feasted on the Vanuatu archipelago. In the village of Botko we find out why European settlers were so afraid of the island of Malekula.
Native Americans Parade, Pow Pow, Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States
Ceremonies and Festivities
Albuquerque, USA

When the Drums Sound, the Indians Resist

With more than 500 tribes present, the pow wow "Gathering of the Nations" celebrates the sacred remnants of Native American cultures. But it also reveals the damage inflicted by colonizing civilization.
São Tomé, city, São Tomé and Príncipe, alley of the Fort
Cities
Sao Tome (city), São Tomé and Principe

The Capital of the Santomean Tropics

Founded by the Portuguese, in 1485, São Tomé prospered for centuries, like the city because of the goods in and out of the homonymous island. The archipelago's independence confirmed it as the busy capital that we trod, always sweating.
Fogón de Lola, great food, Costa Rica, Guápiles
Meal
Fogón de Lola Costa Rica

The Flavor of Costa Rica of El Fogón de Lola

As the name suggests, the Fogón de Lola de Guapiles serves dishes prepared on the stove and in the oven, according to Costa Rican family tradition. In particular, Tia Lola's.
Casa Menezes Braganca, Chandor, Goa, India
Culture
Chandor, Goa, India

A True Goan-Portuguese House

A mansion with Portuguese architectural influence, Casa Menezes Bragança, stands out from the houses of Chandor, in Goa. It forms a legacy of one of the most powerful families in the former province. Both from its rise in a strategic alliance with the Portuguese administration and from the later Goan nationalism.
Reindeer Racing, Kings Cup, Inari, Finland
Sport
Inari, Finland

The Wackiest Race on the Top of the World

Finland's Lapps have been competing in the tow of their reindeer for centuries. In the final of the Kings Cup - Porokuninkuusajot - , they face each other at great speed, well above the Arctic Circle and well below zero.
Train Fianarantsoa to Manakara, Malagasy TGV, locomotive
Traveling
Fianarantsoa-Manakara, Madagascar

On board the Malagasy TGV

We depart Fianarantsoa at 7a.m. It wasn't until 3am the following morning that we completed the 170km to Manakara. The natives call this almost secular train Train Great Vibrations. During the long journey, we felt, very strongly, those of the heart of Madagascar.
Meeting of the waters, Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil
Ethnic
Manaus, Brazil

Meeting the Meeting of the Waters

The phenomenon is not unique, but in Manaus it has a special beauty and solemnity. At a certain point, the Negro and Solimões rivers converge on the same Amazonas bed, but instead of immediately mixing, both flows continue side by side. As we explore these parts of the Amazon, we witness the unusual confrontation of the Encontro das Águas.
sunlight photography, sun, lights
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Natural Light (Part 2)

One Sun, So Many Lights

Most travel photos are taken in sunlight. Sunlight and weather form a capricious interaction. Learn how to predict, detect and use at its best.
Estancia Harberton, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina
History
Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

A Farm at the End of the World

In 1886, Thomas Bridges, an English orphan taken by his missionary foster family to the farthest reaches of the southern hemisphere, founded the ancient homestead of Tierra del Fuego. Bridges and the descendants surrendered to the end of the world. today, your Estancia harberton it is a stunning Argentine monument to human determination and resilience.
Cilaos, Reunion Island, Casario Piton des Neiges
Islands
Cilaos, Reunion Island

Refuge under the roof of the Indian Ocean

Cilaos appears in one of the old green boilers on the island of Réunion. It was initially inhabited by outlaw slaves who believed they were safe at that end of the world. Once made accessible, nor did the remote location of the crater prevent the shelter of a village that is now peculiar and flattered.
Maksim, Sami people, Inari, Finland-2
Winter White
Inari, Finland

The Guardians of Boreal Europe

Long discriminated against by Scandinavian, Finnish and Russian settlers, the Sami people regain their autonomy and pride themselves on their nationality.
silhouette and poem, Cora coralina, Goias Velho, Brazil
Literature
Goiás Velho, Brazil

The Life and Work of a Marginal Writer

Born in Goiás, Ana Lins Bretas spent most of her life far from her castrating family and the city. Returning to its origins, it continued to portray the prejudiced mentality of the Brazilian countryside
Cahuita National Park, Costa Rica, Caribbean, Punta Cahuita aerial view
Nature
Cahuita, Costa Rica

Dreadlocked Costa Rica

Traveling through Central America, we explore a Costa Rican coastline as much as the Caribbean. In Cahuita, Pura Vida is inspired by an eccentric faith in Jah and a maddening devotion to cannabis.
Mother Armenia Statue, Yerevan, Armenia
Autumn
Yerevan, Armenia

A Capital between East and West

Heiress of the Soviet civilization, aligned with the great Russia, Armenia allows itself to be seduced by the most democratic and sophisticated ways of Western Europe. In recent times, the two worlds have collided in the streets of your capital. From popular and political dispute, Yerevan will dictate the new course of the nation.
Geothermal, Iceland Heat, Ice Land, Geothermal, Blue Lagoon
Natural Parks
Iceland

The Geothermal Coziness of the Ice Island

Most visitors value Iceland's volcanic scenery for its beauty. Icelanders also draw from them heat and energy crucial to the life they lead to the Arctic gates.
PN Timanfaya, Mountains of Fire, Lanzarote, Caldera del Corazoncillo
UNESCO World Heritage
PN Timanfaya, Lanzarote, Canary Islands

PN Timanfaya and the Fire Mountains of Lanzarote

Between 1730 and 1736, out of nowhere, dozens of volcanoes in Lanzarote erupted successively. The massive amount of lava they released buried several villages and forced almost half of the inhabitants to emigrate. The legacy of this cataclysm is the current Martian setting of the exuberant PN Timanfaya.
Zorro's mask on display at a dinner at the Pousada Hacienda del Hidalgo, El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico
Characters
El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico

Zorro's Cradle

El Fuerte is a colonial city in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. In its history, the birth of Don Diego de La Vega will be recorded, it is said that in a mansion in the town. In his fight against the injustices of the Spanish yoke, Don Diego transformed himself into an elusive masked man. In El Fuerte, the legendary “El Zorro” will always take place.
Balandra Beach, Mexico, Baja California, aerial view
Beaches
Balandra beach e El Tecolote, Baja California Sur, Mexico

Seaside Treasures of the Sea of ​​Cortés

Often proclaimed the most beautiful beach in Mexico, we find a serious case of landscape exoticism in the jagged cove of Playa Balandra. The duo if forms with the neighbour Playa Tecolote, is one of the truly unmissable beachfronts of the vast Baja California.
Armenia Cradle Christianity, Mount Aratat
Religion
Armenia

The Cradle of the Official Christianity

Just 268 years after Jesus' death, a nation will have become the first to accept the Christian faith by royal decree. This nation still preserves its own Apostolic Church and some of the oldest Christian temples in the world. Traveling through the Caucasus, we visit them in the footsteps of Gregory the Illuminator, the patriarch who inspires Armenia's spiritual life.
white pass yukon train, Skagway, Gold Route, Alaska, USA
On Rails
Skagway, Alaska

A Klondike's Gold Fever Variant

The last great American gold rush is long over. These days, hundreds of cruise ships each summer pour thousands of well-heeled visitors into the shop-lined streets of Skagway.
Creepy Goddess Graffiti, Haight Ashbury, San Francisco, USA, United States America
Society
The Haight, San Francisco, USA

Orphans of the Summer of Love

Nonconformity and creativity are still present in the old Flower Power district. But almost 50 years later, the hippie generation has given way to a homeless, uncontrolled and even aggressive youth.
Visitors at Talisay Ruins, Negros Island, Philippines
Daily life
Talisay City, Philippines

Monument to a Luso-Philippine Love

At the end of the 11th century, Mariano Lacson, a Filipino farmer, and Maria Braga, a Portuguese woman from Macau, fell in love and got married. During the pregnancy of what would be her 2th child, Maria succumbed to a fall. Destroyed, Mariano built a mansion in his honor. In the midst of World War II, the mansion was set on fire, but the elegant ruins that endured perpetuate their tragic relationship.
Rottnest Island, Wadjemup, Australia, Quokkas
Wildlife
Wadjemup, Rottnest Island, Australia

Among Quokkas and other Aboriginal Spirits

In the XNUMXth century, a Dutch captain nicknamed this island surrounded by a turquoise Indian Ocean, “Rottnest, a rat's nest”. The quokkas that eluded him were, however, marsupials, considered sacred by the Whadjuk Noongar aborigines of Western Australia. Like the Edenic island on which the British colonists martyred them.
Passengers, scenic flights-Southern Alps, New Zealand
Scenic Flights
Aoraki / Mount Cook, New Zealand

The Aeronautical Conquest of the Southern Alps

In 1955, pilot Harry Wigley created a system for taking off and landing on asphalt or snow. Since then, his company has unveiled, from the air, some of the greatest scenery in Oceania.