Holland has mountains, and all people have died from a horrible virus a couple of years ago, leaving behind an abandoned country!
Today I cycled to Nagasaki city. In the morning I passed by the Huis Ten Bosch Dutch theme park fairly early, and it was still closed. I took a couple of photos and moved on. I cycled for at least an hour towards the south when suddenly I saw this in the distance:
More Dutch buildings? That's strange. The only Dutch-related area in Japan that I knew of was the Huis Ten Bosch theme park. I of course could not resist a little investigation. Finding the entrance alone was difficult enough as there were not a lot of signs, and I ended up climbing a hill with some farmland on top. Going down on the other side of the hill I suddenly found myself in an abandoned Dutch village.
Then I noticed a sign:
and it all clicked into place. Yesterday at Huis Ten Bosch, while talking to the funny Dutch guy with all the strange bicycles, he told me he'd been doing his job for as long as HTB existed, and even before that at its predecessor, Holland Village! This place is the predecessor of Huis Ten Bosch and used to be a Dutch-themed theme park! Now it's completely abandoned and there's nobody there! I love exploring abandoned places, so suddenly finding an abandoned theme park at the side of the road is like discovering gold! I took my time and went around taking a lot of photos. I tried to find information on this place but couldn't find much more than this Japanese wiki page.
It's weird enough to find a Dutch village in Japan, it's even weirder to find it abandoned and looking like something from a post-apocalyptic movie.
I then came across a tiny little storehouse.
I'm not exactly sure when this park was abandoned. The foliage growth, escalators and signs made me think that it couldn't have been more than ten years ago. But this storehouse uses some logo's that I've only ever seen in old Holland when I was little, maybe twenty years ago. I really can't tell.
Morbid curiosity got the better of me, and I checked to see if the door was unlocked. It was. I slowly opened the door, and as I did so a medium-sized (that's very-large-sized for Dutch standards!) spider crawled away from me. When I entered I saw this:
The store was completely empty, except for two of these dolls, slightly mutilated. There was nothing on the shelves, which was too bad, because I was kind of hoping to find a souvenir thingie from 20 years ago. No such luck. In the middle of the store there was a staircase left unfolded that lead to the attic. Thinking "oh well", I climbed the stairs and peeked my head up into the attic, and then got the shit scared out of me by a gigantic spider.
By Dutch standards, this spider is the size of a small moon. It was far enough away, but considering that I couldn't see anything as I was climbing the stairs, I consider myself lucky that it was far away and didn't jump on my head. o_0
Abandoning my quest for souvenirs I returned to my bicycle and found my way back to the main road. I'm very happy with today's find. You can find the rest of the pictures here on Picasa. Note that I used my S90 compact camera today, which does focus and expose properly, unlike my 50D+18-200mm.
I'm in Nagasaki now, at a park in the port area, sitting under a tree, relaxing. I'm taking a forced break tomorrow. Why this break is forced I will tell you the day after tomorrow, when I will hopefully have another nice story to tell :)