Posted by Heliocentrism on July 2, 2011
April 29, 2011
First let me apologize for not updating for, what was it, …a couple months? I have not been not traveling, and I have not been to busying at work. I have been editing this blog, though.
I am a bad typist, speller, and overall, I’m not good at physically writing things like blogs. I don’t know why, but when I type, my mind and fingers are not in sync. Sometimes my fingers with leave out words or entire phrases when I type. Then when I read it back right before I post, my eyes will see what was meant to be written and not the tons of typos and errors.
I also do this really weird thing where I consistently and unconsciously replace one word for another. I write “about” for “above” and visa versa. Or “became” for “because”. Most of the time I am not even aware that I did it until I reread my post weeks later.
I do my best editing after I have forgotten what I meant to write. So weeks or months after this is posted I will be better able to fix this entry.
And I’m still not sure if the word is “entry” or “entree”. It doesn’t help that I am American and I went to a British school. So now I don’t remember how to spell some words like an American. Is it “traveling” or “travelling”? I could look it up, when I’m not sure, but many times I don’t realize when I am spelling things the British way unless someone points it out to me.
But most of all, I am a bad speller. I just wish that we spelled English words phonetically or that I had a ghost writer…
I planned this trip weeks and months in advanced. I wanted to have fun and not get lost, but the best laid schemes of mice and men…
First off, it wasn’t entirely my fault. There were roads on our map, that no longer existed. There were highways mis-numbered by google. And campsites mis-labled on google.
That said, we did manage to get to Usuki without getting lost. It is right around the corner, after all. Once we left Usuki, we got lost.
Where are the dishes?
We packed up everything early that morning. I put everything in an area of our apartment that we hardly ever use. All we had to do was put them in the car. We brought our table, chairs, tent, sleeping bags, washing basin filled with dishes, cooler, …
When we got to the campsite, we unpack and started to make dinner. That’s when I realized that we didn’t have the washing basin filled with dishes. We had no pots, no cups, nothing to eat off of.
Luckily there was a hardware store not too far from the campsite. It was a 3 minute drive away. The prices weren’t too bad, so we got a new wok-like frying pan/pot and paper plates and cups.
Because camping season had not officially started the camp site was technically closed. I asked a city official weeks before to recommend some other camping area that would be opened. He said that we could just camp there for free. There was no guarantee of amenities though. But, everything seemed to function normally.
The first night on the beach was great. The solar powered heated showers were fantastic. The trip started off pretty well.
How to get there:
You can enter Japan by plane or boat. Though, the number of boats going to Japan from other countries has gone down significantly.
Americans get 90-day visas to Japan at the port of entry. Check with your nearest Japanese embassy or consulate for visa information.
- Emergency Numbers:
- Police 110
- Ambulance and Fire 119
- Important phone numbers to know while in Japan
- Comfort Woman
- The Commoner
- Empire of the Sun
- Flyboys: A True Story of Courage
- Geisha, a Life
- Ghost Soldiers: The Forgotten Epic Story of World War II’s Most Dramatic Mission
- The Last Concubine
- Memoirs of a Geisha
- Tears in the Darkness: The Story of the Bataan Death March and Its Aftermath
- Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan
- What I Talk About When I Talk About Running
- Be careful what over the counter drugs you bring into Japan. Actifed, Sudafed, Vicks inhalers, and Codeine are prohibited.
- InternationalATMs are really hard to find; more so if you aren’t in a big city. Many places in Japan do not use credit cards. Take cash and call your bank toaskwhatATMs or banks in Japan will work with your cash card.
- ATMs have opening hours. Usually 9:00-18:00 (They have better work hours than most business men and women here.)
- You can get a Japan Railway, pass which saves you a lot of money on the trains, but you can only buy it before you get to Japan and you cannot be a resident of Japan. (I don’t have more information about it because I’ve only ever lived in Japan. I’ve never been a tourist.)
Usuki Stone Buddhas
- Coordinates 33°05’26.0″N 131°45’45.5″E
by car –
- Take Oita Expressway.
- Get off at the Usuki (臼杵) exit #16.
- At the light turn left (west) on route 502.
- At the 4th light turn left (south) .
- The entrance will be on your right.
The Oita Expressway is free from Oita Exit #12 south.
804-1 Fukata, Usuki-shi, Oita
- Adults – 530YEN
- Kids – 260YEN
- Usuki Residences – Free
- Free Parking
- Sunrise to Sunset
- 59 of the statues were selected as the first National Treasures of Japan in Kyushu.
- It’s not worth it to make a trip all the way to Usuki to see this, but if you’re in the neighborhood, go see it.
Camping Village Beach Takanabe
(Takanabe Kaisuiyoku-ba Kyanpuba)
- 32°07’05.2″N 131°32’00.8″E
From the Usuki Stone Buddas –
- Get back onto the Oita Express way heading south.
- Continue until the Express way ends and head south on route 36.
- Route 36 will end at route 217. Go left on route 217.
- When Route 217 ends turn left onto route 10 heading southwest.
- Turn left (east) onto route 311 towards Takanabe Station.
- When route 311 ends turn right (south) at Takanabe Station. You will have to go through a roundabout.
- After 2 block turn left (east) over the train tracks.
- Take the left most path to the beach.
- 0983-22-5588 (City Hall)
- To rent a tent – 1,200/night
- To bring your own tent – 600/night
- Free when the campsite is closed. (It’s okay to camp here when the site is closed. I called city hall and they said it’s ok.)
- Free Parking
- The campsite is open July 17 – August 31
- You can stay here when the campsite at other times of the year if you have your own tent.
- There are toilets near the campsite.
- There are showers close to the beach where the surfers hang out.
- The showers are free and available even when the campsite is closed.
- I think there is a kitchen, but it’s only available when the campsite is open.
- No electrical outlets.
- This is a surfing beach. It is not good for swimming.
This campsite might be permanently closed.