Random Oume trip

It took about 10 minutes to change from sleep mode to cycle-to-the-station mode, that Saturday. It was a four day weekend, and I was thoroughly bored. I like random plans, but if your 'default' random plan consists of cycling or hiking then even the random things are no longer random. So I did what I had wanted to do ever since I came to Japan, but seldom had a chance to do. Take a train somewhere. Get out somewhere. Take pictures. Anywhere will do. After loading a map of the Japanese train and subway network onto my camera (no, I don't have a smart-phone yet...) I was on my way. To Oume.

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I figured that the most interesting train lines are the local lines that don't connect to another line when they end. After glancing on my map I determined that I had to head north for Hachioji, and from there on even farther north. I changed my mind about the 'final' destination a couple of times along the way, but when I arrived at Haijima I decided to take the Oume line all the way to the end.

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Well, that was the plan, but somewhere in the middle of the line the train stopped at Oume and I had to transfer. That is, if I wanted to wait 30 minutes for the next train. I didn't, so I went out and explored Oume. And it was a peculiar town. Located near a river, the walk from the station to the riverside was a steep downhill walk. Along the way I encountered the typical sights you'd otherwise see in any Japanese town. In the 1960s.

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For some reason there were posters of old movies everywhere. It made the whole town have a very retro feel to it. This, plus the fact that there were barely any people to be seen, even on busy streets, made it a bit of a peculiar experience. It felt like a ghost town.

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Note the awesome Metropolis poster. For some reason I had just read the wiki article about the movie the night before, so I was awesomeified by this coincidence.

Unfortunately I woke up rather late, and it was getting cloudy and dark, so I cut my visit short and went on my way back. I made some unexpected detours along the way just for the sake of it, but none of it was as interesting as the 60s movie town of Oume. Before leaving Oume I took some photos near the river side. Nice river.

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Lastly, here's some more awesome movie posters. Nothing could ever be as awesome as a cowboy ninja shooting his two guns while riding a horse.

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I have to admit this trip was a bit too random. The next time I do such a thing I'll at least make sure to wake up a bit earlier so that I'll have more time to look around. Random train trips are difficult, because destinations like Oume are at least 2 hours away by train. Still, they're fun every once in a while. It was good to feel the sense of exploration again. Japan always has an interesting surprise waiting for you. Like this Gundam flower shop.

Posted in Japan , Photography , Travel