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The kisaragi station – japanese urban legend.
The Kisaragi Station is a Japanese urban legend originating on the 2Ch message boards in 2004 and revolves around private railway at Shizuoka. Shared as an anecdote in the thread ‘Post About Strange Occurrences Around You: Thread 26’, the tale recounted how the anonymous user – who was later identified as ‘Hasumi’ – awoke in a train carriage with all other passengers asleep. As Hasumi struggled with the mystery, she would constantly have exchanges with users at the message board, advising her and sharing such confusion. It was her routine commute to work, but the train was strangely barrelling to a destination without any stops as usual. The conductor and driver were both inaccessible to every effort – isolating her from any answers explaining the train deviating from a normal schedule.
Finally, after an unexpectedly long trip of an hour, the train stopped at ‘Kisaragi Station’ late into the night – an apparently vacant lot of no discernible activity. Hasumi was adamant to leave the train, however, as such a profoundly discomforting experience. Consulting with users online at their thread, Hasumi was advised there’s no such station listed online and she should withdraw immediately, but they persisted. As Hasumi wandered outside the station, and took advice from people on the message board, she desperately tried to locate a taxi to no success. Defeated, she discovered a telephone booth, dialled her parents and requested they collect her, but they were unable to determine where he is exactly – Kisaragi Station appeared on no maps. Their parents urged him to contact emergency services as ‘lost’ – this would prove futile when they merely dismissed her as a prankster.
Hasumi’s experience soon became more ominous – bells ringing from the station, a drumbeat intensifying and the overall location completely unidentifiable. Terrified to return into the station with an apparently otherworldly festival transpiring, she climbed onto nearby tracks to abruptly have somebody interrupt who screamed, “Hey! Don’t walk on the track, that’s dangerous!”. Turning around, Hasumi witnessed a one-legged old man, not an attendant, who immediately vanished – her fear only amplified at such a surreal event. In a state of ensuing panic consequently, Hasumi fled along the track rashly and into a darkened tunnel, stumbling and injuring herself in a reckless manner.
She soon reached the end of the tunnel and was welcomed by a friendly man who offered a ride to safety – unusual for this hour and also at such a location. No choices remaining, Hasumi accepted and accompanied the man into a summoned train headed into distant mountains. The ‘friendly man’ became silent and Hasumi was unnerved as her surroundings became increasingly unfamiliar.
Hatsumi completely disappeared and her last message board post was: “My battery’s almost run out. Things are getting strange, so I think I’m going to make a run for it. He’s been talking to himself about bizarre things for a while now. To prepare for just the right time, I’m going to make this my last post for now.”
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The Mystery of Kisaragi Station: A Haunting Urban Legend
Table of Contents
Urban legends have a way of capturing our imagination and sending shivers down our spines. Kisaragi Station is one such mysterious legend, that has captured the fascination of many. Nestled in the heart of Japan , this enigmatic train station is said to be a gateway to the supernatural, where time and space become blurred and the line between reality and the paranormal fades away.
The Legend of Kisaragi Station
According to the legend, Kisaragi Station only appears once every four years on February 29th, known as Kisaragi Day. It is said that those who board the train departing from Kisaragi Station on this auspicious day are transported into a realm beyond our own, a realm inhabited by vengeful spirits and malevolent entities.
Stories of Haunting Encounters
Numerous eerie tales surround Kisaragi Station, with people recounting their spine-chilling experiences. Passengers who have stepped onto the train speak of strange apparitions, disembodied voices, and a feeling of being watched by unseen entities. Some claim to have witnessed ghostly figures wandering the train cars, while others report hearing chilling whispers or feeling an inexplicable presence in the air.
Time Distortions and Otherworldly Phenomena
One of the most perplexing aspects of Kisaragi Station is the time distortions that occur within its confines. Passengers have reported experiencing hours passing by in what feels like mere minutes, or vice versa. Some claim to have glimpsed alternate realities or encountered beings that defy human comprehension. The boundaries of what we consider possible seem to blur within the mystical realm of Kisaragi Station.
The Enigma of Kisaragi Day
Why does Kisaragi Station only manifest on February 29th? The answer remains a mystery. Some believe that this rare occurrence is connected to the alignment of supernatural energies on this specific date. Others speculate that it is a cosmic portal, allowing spirits to traverse the boundaries between the living and the dead.
A Thrilling Cinematic Interpretation
The legend of Kisaragi Station has not only captivated the minds of those who love urban legends but has also inspired creative works, including movies. “Kisaragi Station: A Journey into the Unknown” is one such cinematic interpretation. The film takes viewers on a suspenseful ride, delving into the eerie world of the station, the encounters of its passengers, and the chilling mysteries waiting to be unravelled.
While “Kisaragi Station: A Journey into the Unknown” is a work of fiction, it taps into the collective fascination surrounding this haunting urban legend, exploring the fear of the unknown and the tantalizing possibility of a realm beyond our own.
- H asumi’s Mysterious Journey : Hasumi, a young woman, found herself aboard a train where all the passengers were mysteriously asleep. Confused and seeking answers, she turned to an online message board for guidance. As the train continued its journey without any stops, she grew increasingly anxious. When the train finally arrived at Kisaragi Station, she ventured outside, only to find herself in an empty and unsettling place. Hasumi’s desperation to leave and her encounters with strange phenomena, such as the ringing bells and the one-legged old man, left her terrified and determined to find her way back home.
- T he Disappearance of Hasumi : Hasumi’s last communication on the message board revealed her growing unease and her decision to escape from her unsettling surroundings. With her phone battery running low, she shared her intention to make a run for it. In a state of heightened fear, she encountered a mysterious man who offered her a ride to safety. Despite her instincts warning her against it, Hasumi reluctantly accepted the offer, only to realize that she was being led further into unfamiliar territory. The encounter took a sinister turn, leaving her to vanish and her fate unknown.
Visiting Kisaragi Station: Fact or Fiction?
As with many urban legends, the veracity of Kisaragi Station’s existence remains uncertain. Some argue that it is merely a product of imagination and folklore, while others claim to have experienced its supernatural presence firsthand. Regardless of its factual existence, Kisaragi Station continues to capture the imaginations of those drawn to tales of the paranormal and the mysterious.
So, if you find yourself near Kisaragi Station on February 29th, perhaps you’ll be tempted to step aboard and discover what lies within. But remember, tread carefully, for the realm of Kisaragi Station may hold secrets best left undisturbed.
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The following story was posted on the 2chan forums in real time. The original poster, who went by the name Hasumi, kept readers up-to-date on her strange experience as it was happening, and received advice from them as to what to do. The following is what happened.
Hasumi It might just be my imagination, but do you mind if I talk about something?
2chan Sure, go ahead. What happened?
Hasumi I just got on the train, but something’s off.
Hasumi It’s the train I always take to and from work, but it hasn’t stopped at any stations for about 20 minutes now. It always stops every five minutes, or at most every seven or eight, but it hasn’t stopped at all. There are currently five other people on board, but they’re all asleep.
2chan You haven’t gotten off the train yet, have you? You didn’t get on the express by mistake?
Hasumi Yeah, like you said, it’s possible I got on the wrong train. I’ll wait it out just a little longer. If anything else weird happens, I’ll come back again.
2chan First of all, why don’t you go to the front carriage and see the conductor? If he had an epileptic fit or something that would be terrible. Go and check on him!
Hasumi It still doesn’t look like we’re going to stop anywhere, so I’ll go and have a look.
The blinds or something are covering the window, so I can’t see the driver. I’m on a private railway in Shizuoka Prefecture.
2chan Did you knock on the window?
Hasumi I did, but there was no answer.
2chan Can you see outside? Can you see the names of passing stations or anything?
Hasumi After leaving the tunnel the train has started to slow down a little. We don’t usually pass through a tunnel though. It’s the train from Shin-Hamamatsu Station.
It looks like we’re about to stop.
2chan You’re not gonna get off, are you?
Hasumi We’re stopped at Kisaragi Station, but I wonder if I should get off? I’ve never seen or heard of this station before.
2chan You should get off.
No, you should stay on until the last stop.
I mean, the train should’ve started moving again by now, shouldn’t it?
Hasumi, what time did you get on the train?
Hasumi I got off. The station is empty. I got on the train around 11.40 pm, I think.
2chan I did a search for Kisaragi Station, but nothing came up… And hang on, your train’s been running for an hour now? Alright, I’m off to take a bath.
I looked for Kisaragi Station as well, but there’s nothing here.
Hasumi I think I should go back. I’ve been looking for a timetable but I can’t find anything. The train is still stopped so I wonder if it would be safer to just get back on? Well, while I was writing that I already got back on board.
2chan Are there any buildings nearby that look like they might have people? It’s cold out there, so be careful.
Hasumi I’m gonna leave the station and see if I can find a taxi. Thanks.
2chan That’s a good idea. Be careful.
I’m doubtful that you’ll easily be able to find a taxi at an empty station after the last trains have already run.
And it looks like Hasumi’s become a resident of the 2D world.
Hasumi There’s nothing here, let alone a taxi. What should I do?
2chan Go see the station attendant or a nearby police box!
Shouldn’t you call 110 for now?
Why don’t you call the taxi company?
All you can do at this point is go to the nearest convenience store.
If there’s a public phone nearby, you should look up the number of the taxi company and give them a call.
Hasumi I call my parents to come and pick me up but they don’t know where Kisaragi Station is. They said they’d look it up on the map and then come to get me, but I’m kinda scared.
2chan What happened to the others on the train? Were you the only one who got off?
Hasumi, I also tried to find Kisaragi Station on the internet, but there’s nothing here. You said you were near the Shin-Hamamatsu area, right? I’ll see if I can find anything on Yahoo.
Hasumi I went to look for a public phone but there aren’t any. The other passengers didn’t get off, so I’m alone right now. The station name is most definitely Kisaragi Station.
2chan There’s a chance you’ll find a public phone off the station grounds.
Why don’t you try leaving the station?
I just did a bit of investigating right now, and the kanji for ‘oni’ (demon) can also be read as ‘kisaragi,’ right…?
So you mean ‘Demon Station’…? That’s terrifying.
Are you a video game nerd? When I googled it, I found a video game.
Write down the previous and next stations from Kisaragi Station. Don’t say there’s nothing written there.
Hasumi What game are you talking about? There are no previous or next stations written here.
2chan Try walking back home along the tracks.
If you start running now, you can probably catch up with the train!
It’s a station, so there has to be people living around there.
Hasumi Yeah, that’s right. I was panicking, so I didn’t even notice. I’ll follow the tracks back and wait for my parents to call. I tried looking before in the Town Information part of I Mode in my phone, but it came up with some kind of error. I just wanna go home.
2chan Whether it’s a joke or not, I’m gonna work towards solving this seriously.
Hasumi There really is nothing around here. All I can see are grasslands and mountains. But if I follow the railway tracks, I think I can get home, so I’ll do my best. Thank you. You might think it’s all just one big joke, but can I come back if I run into any other problems?
2chan Of course. At any rate, take care.
Of course. Just be careful your phone doesn’t die. It’s your lifeline right now.
Don’t start walking in the wrong direction. And be careful inside the tunnel.
Can a phone even get reception in an area with nothing around? I think it would be better if you don’t move from the station…
All alone at an unmanned station on a cold night. The lights will probably turn off soon and it’ll be dark.
The railway tracks are an even darker trap. There’s a tunnel after that too, right?
And yet, it would probably be safer to spend the night at the station…
This is terribly risky.
Hasumi My father called. He had a lot of questions, but in the end we have no idea where I am, so he told me to call 110. I don’t really want to, but I’m going to give the police a call and see if they can help me…
2chan I think it would be easier for you to move around once it gets brighter…
Could you really wait there all alone at night? In some strange, unfamiliar place…
Could you pass through the tunnel all alone at night? On some strange, unfamiliar railway track…
So could you keep walking through some unfamiliar street at night in the cold?
Hasumi I tried explaining my situation the best I could to the police, but they thought it was a joke and got angry at me. I was so scared that I ended up apologising to them…
2chan Why did you apologise? You should call it a night. Go wait at the station for the first train.
What’s it like around the station? Is there anything there?
Hasumi I can hear what sounds like the beating of drums coming from far away, mixed with the sound of a ringing bell. Honestly, I don’t know what I should do anymore.
2chan Hasumi, you need to get back to the station. It’s best to return to where you were in the first place when you get lost.
It’s about to start…
Drums and bells…?
It’s probably just a festival.
Hasumi You might think I’m lying, but I’m so scared, I can’t look back. I wanna go back to the station, but I can’t turn back.
2chan Run. Whatever you do, don’t look back.
You can’t look back at the station! You’ll be taken away. Just run towards the tunnel, right now! It should be closer than you think.
Hasumi Someone just yelled out from behind me. “Hey, you can’t walk along the railway track, it’s dangerous!” I thought it might be the station attendant, so I turned around, and about 10 metres away there was the old guy with one leg standing there. Then he disappeared. I’m so scared, I can’t move.
2chan I said don’t look back. Just run.
Calm down and listen to what I have to say. Try going towards the sound of the drums. There should be people there.
Just where are you trying to send Hasumi?
That’s not it at all, Hasumi is about to be taken away. That’s why I’m saying, if she can, she should go back.
How come you could you tell it was an old guy with just one leg?
…because it’s an old guy with just one leg?
It’s probably some guy that was hit by a train and lost his leg and then died.
Hasumi I can’t walk anymore, but I also can’t run. The sound of the drums is getting closer.
2chan Just wait for morning. Once it gets brighter, it won’t be so scary.
You should have gotten back on the train.
Hasumi I’m still alive. I fell over and I’m bleeding, but I’m still holding onto the heel I broke. I don’t want to die yet.
2chan Well, it’s not like things were going to get better if you stayed in the one spot, anyway.
I think you’ll be fine if you can get through the tunnel, anyhow. When you pass through, let us know and get some help.
Hasumi I called home. My dad said he’d call the police for me, but the sound is getting closer and closer.
2chan Well, let’s just pray that sound isn’t the sound of an approaching train. Having said that, it’s probably too late for that now.
Hasumi I did my best and I’m somehow in front of the tunnel now. The name says Isanuki. The sound is getting closer, so I’m gonna gather up all my courage and try to get through. I’ll post again once I get through safely.
2chan Good luck.
This is the end. The train and the station are gone. You can’t go back. There’s no-one to follow. The sound you hear is a phantom of your own past. Run towards the tunnel. If you stop, you’ll just be stuck between worlds.
Hasumi I’ve exited the tunnel. Someone’s standing just ahead of me. Looks like doing what you guys suggested was the right answer. Thank you. I’m probably gonna be mistaken for a monster, my face is a mess of tears.
2chan Hasumi, wait! Don’t move!
Stop! It’s dangerous!
Who would be standing there at such a time? It’s too suspicious…
Hasumi Sorry for making you all worry. The person was very kind and said they would take me to the closest station. Apparently there’s a business hotel or something there. Everyone, thank you so much.
2chan Hasumi. There’s something I want to ask you, so please answer. Where are you? Can you ask that kind person the place name?
Are they really kind? They could be scarier than what’s going on here, you know.
Yeah, maybe. Anywhere, where the hell are you?!
That person is dangerous!! Why is someone on the railway tracks at this time of night? They must have run into you while disposing of a dead body or something! Run!!
Hasumi I asked where we are, but he just said ‘Hina.’ There’s no way that could be true though.
2chan Hasumi, get out of the car!
I’m sorry, Kasumi. Where is Hina?
What a strange story. So at this particular time some suspicious old guy just happened to be there to pick up a girl walking along the railway tracks…? What was he doing?
Hasumi We’ve started getting closer to the mountains now. I don’t think there’s anywhere for the car to stop, and he’s stopped talking to me entirely.
2chan There’s no reason for even a strange old dude to be up at this time.
Maybe he’s not talking to you anymore because you’re always on your phone?
Hasumi, you’re in danger. Did you tell your parents to come and get you from the tunnel?
Hasumi. Call 110. This might be the last time you ever write anything.
Hasumi My battery’s about to die. Things are looking strange, so I’m gonna try to run the first chance I get. He’s been muttering about something I can’t understand for a while now. Just so I’m ready when needs be, I’m going to make this my last post for now.
※ After this post, Hasumi was never heard from again.
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- Kisaragi Station Part 2
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The most haunted train station in Japan - Doai Station
- Gunma Prefecture
- Minakami-machi - Things to Do
- Doai Station
Arriving from Echigo Yuzawa you are on ground level but if you come from Minakami station there are... read more
Doai Station is on the Joetsu Line that heads from Minakami in Gunma to Echigo-Yuzawa in Niigata... read more
The most haunted train station in Japan
Doai Station is said to be the most haunted station in Japan. The mountain nearby - Tanigawadake, has claimed more lives than any other mountain in the world, so perhaps the station is haunted by the souls of the hikers looking to find their way home. The station itself has nearly 500 stairs in a shaft, connecting the surface with the platform below. It has a an eerie, Cold War bunker feel to it and gets windy when trains enter the tunnel below. It's a sight to see in itself and can be reached by local train, 2 stops from Minakami Station. Exit here and walk the 5 mins up the road from the station to the warm atmosphere of Tenjin Lodge.
Doai Station is on the Joetsu Line that heads from Minakami in Gunma to Echigo-Yuzawa in Niigata.. To get there it has to go under Mount Tanigawa. The station before Doai is Yubiso and that is the start of over 10kms of tunnel. By the time the train reaches Doai it is deep under the mountains. To get back to the surface from the underground platform at Doai you have to climb hundreds of steps. If you arrive at the station by car, head inside, turn left and prepare to be amazed!
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Ghost Stations in Japan
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Trains are an important means of commuter transport between major cities and urban areas in Japan. The Shinkansen network or bullet trains presently link most of Japan’s major cities on the islands of Honshu and Kyushu with the Hokkaido links. Visitors to the country are amazed by the trains’ maintenance and efficiency.
Ghost stations or hikyō station (秘境駅, hikyō eki), “secluded station”, can be found around Japan. They are often located in remote mountain areas and places that once had a thriving human population. They are railway stations that hardly see any passengers or are completely isolated and the areas have very few homes and inhabitants. Because of the lack in passengers, the trains no longer make regular stops. Takanobu Ushiyama, a writer and a renowned railfan coined the term hikyō eki . He documented his train travels that resulted in the sudden attention for secluded stations.
Doai Station (土合駅, Doai-eki) in Minakami, Gunma is most notable for having two single side platforms. One is elevated while the other is located underground within the Shin-Shimizu Tunnel. The station runs unattended with the underground tunnel at about 230 feet below ground. The underground platform has no escalator or elevator and can only be accessed using stairs.
Koboro Station in Hokkaido is said to be the most notable hikyō-eki. It runs 87 yards between two tunnels with three of its corners steep cliffs and lush forests while the other faces the Uchiura Bay. The area having no roads close by is practically inaccessible unless by ship or train.
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Halloween Trains in Japan
- Published on : 26/06/2016
- by : Japan Experience
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©Big Ben in Japan,https://www.flickr.com/,,CC BY-SA 2.0,https://www.flickr.com/photos/gaijinbiker/22108872774/
Although Halloween is a holiday originating in the west, these days the Japanese get pretty into it as well! Along with costumes, candy, and haunted houses, even some Japanese trains get into the spirit too.
Mt. Akagi halloween train
Running near Mt. Akagi in Gunma Prefecture, this small, rural railway has trains decorated with pumpkins and ghosts from mid-September through October 31st.
Costume contest on a train
On October 25th of this year, the Tokyu Railways' Toyoko Line will have a costume contest inside a train! The train will be well-decorated, of course, and will end in Shibuya Station so the party can continue even after disembarking.
©Big Ben in Japan,https://www.flickr.com/,,CC BY-SA 2.0,https://www.flickr.com/photos/gaijinbiker/22110422673/
Japanese haunted train
The Randen Line, an above-ground train that runs from the heart of Kyoto city out west to the Arashiyama district, has a yokai, or "monster" themed train ! Passengers are encouraged to dress in costume (for a discounted fare!) and the train will act like a very small, two-car haunted house.
The only catch: this train runs in August! Scary stories and haunted houses are popular in summer in Japan; the chill that runs down your spine is supposed to help you keep cool during the hot weather.
©Big Ben in Japan,https://www.flickr.com/,,CC BY-SA 2.0,https://www.flickr.com/photos/gaijinbiker/22717787622/
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Umisachi Yamasachi Limited Express
The Umisachi Yamasachi Limited Express sightseeing train runs along the scenic Nichinan Coast from Miyazaki Station to Nango.
The Anpanman Train is a special train running in Shikoku with liveries and interior decorations on the theme of the popular Anpanman children's manga and anime series.
Okuizumo Orochi Train
The Okuizumo Orochi train offers a relaxed and scenic train ride through remote mountains and valleys in an open car through Shimane and Hiroshima prefectures.
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Haunted Japan? All about Yokai: 8 Japanese Monsters, Ghosts, and Friendly Spirits!
When delving into the realm of Japanese folklore and its many ghosts, spirits, and monsters, it can get terrifying really fast. Various tales of otherworldly beings preying upon the unsuspecting, possessing jealous and angry people, or simply spooking around a home to bring disease and misfortune can make one’s blood run cold. You might even wake up to your own futon trying to strangle you! In the massive world of these beings that are called yōkai, though, not everything is out to eat you. Some spirits just want to be left alone and go about their ghastly day, and others even try to actively help and protect the humans they encounter. To help you navigate the otherworld a bit better, let us introduce you to a couple these friendly yōkai!
Zashiki Warashi, the Guestroom Child
If you see a child in a kimono roaming your home or find tiny ashen footprints around your residence, consider yourself lucky: a zashiki warashi has moved in. They are guardians of the house as well as bringers of good luck and fortune, which is why people sometimes actively try to attract these “guestroom children”. This yōkai earns both its name and its appearance to its child-like nature : it loves playing harmless tricks, like sitting on a guest's pillow when they really shouldn't, or making music-like noises in rooms that no one uses. This sort of mischief is neither harmful nor particularly annoying, considering that this yōkai is nothing more than a child - one that wards off evil and protects the household from harm on top of it! There is a downside to these hauntings as well, though: it is believed to bring great misfortune should a zashiki warashi leave one's home. To keep this from happening, the spirit must be treated kindly, given the appropriate amount of appreciation and attention, and it will be tremendously happy if the house owners leave a sweet treat for it once in awhile!
Shōjō, the Drunken Ape
Should you ever walk along one of Japan's many coasts and beaches and spot a man-like figure sitting in the sand, the body covered in red, shaggy hair, don’t be afraid. That’s just a shōjō. This yōkai appears somewhat like an orangutan but it is actually a very friendly and curious sea spirit. Its gentle nature isn't what makes this otherworldly being famous, though. That would be the shōjō’s fondness for alcoholic drinks - it sits around the sandy beach all day and enjoys drinking sake. If you approach one, it will most likely invite you to sit down and enjoy a drink as well. In fact, the shōjō are excellent master brewers: they make a special kind of wine from sea bream, one that tastes unbelievably good to people with a pure heart while being unbearably bitter to mischief-makers. So, should you be of pure heart, feel free to hang out with the shōjō and get drunk on sea bream wine together!
O’uni, the Friendly Witch
Belonging to the clan of the mountain hags and witches, ouni definitely are the helpful and friendly sort of witch - but only if you are friendly and helpful as well. When you happen staying in a secluded hut in the Japanese mountains and hear a sudden knock on the door late at night, it might just be the o’uni. With her long thick hair falling down from her head to the ground, and her body is of the hairy kind as well, she might look frightful at first. There's no reason to be afraid, though. When she asks you to grant her free lodging at your place, make sure to invite her in and treat her nicely. If you show her kindness, she will sit down and spin a huge amount of thread for you before leaving without a trace. Enjoy your witch-crafted fabric !
Kappa, the River Child
The Kappa is one of the most famous yōkai in Japanese culture, making many appearances in pop culture and even as mascots for sport teams or companies. Also being called river children, they are excellent swimmers and live in lakes or rivers . Once they are on dry land, however, they tend to be quite clumsy and even in danger, should the bald spot on their head ever dry out completely. Kappa can be very aggressive and mischievous, not to mention their peculiar taste for human entrails. However, if a kappa is shown the appropriate respect, for example by being given offerings such as cucumbers, their second-favorite food right after yummy human, they do show their friendly nature . Worshiped properly, kappa often help the human population with the irrigation of their crops, befriend lonely children, and can even be great companions, competing with people in various games . If you value your insides and don't mind a match of shogi (Japanese chess) against a kappa, be sure to leave some cucumbers close to the next river .
Nuppeppō, the Stinky Delicacy
This extremely rare otherworldly manifestation looks like a deformed, rather creepy blob of flesh. Even worse than its unbecoming looks, however, is the foul stench that its body gives off. Smelling of rotten flesh to such an extent that a passerby gags before even spotting the nuppeppō, this yōkai can prove extremely hard to catch. Why would anyone want to catch a blob of stink in the first place, you ask? According to scholars and pharmacists of the Edo period, consuming the flesh of a nuppeppō grants incredible power. When turned into medicine, the nuppeppō's meat is said to be able to cure any illness and as such, various feudal lords have tried their luck at catching one of these creatures. None of them have succeeded but even if someone really managed to catch a nuppeppō without fainting from the terrible smell, the second challenge would probably be to actually eat the little soap-dodger's meat.
Baku, the Dream Eater
With its diet consisting solely of bad dreams, it is pretty obvious that the baku is an asset, even if it looks a bit weird. Its head is that of an elephant, its legs are borrowed from a tiger and its tail is of an ox. It prowls large and dense forests that it usually has to itself, as ill-meaning spirits stay clear of the baku. Not only do these yōkai devour the bad dreams of the people living in their domain from their bad dreams, they also guard their territory and everyone in it fiercely. Because of that, the baku is considered to be a holy creature, a bringer of luck, health , and general good fortune. The image of a baku was often stitched into pillows and engraved on talismans in the past to ward off evil dreams and spirits.
Myōbu, the Celestial Guardian
The statues that are found across Inari shrines all across Japan depict the myōbu, a fox spirit that is both the bringer of happiness and luck as well as the messenger of Inari, the deity of harvest. Their beautiful white fur hints at their celestial nature . People often offer fried tofu in front of a myōbu statue as a gesture of worship - fried tofu is the favorite dish of this fox spirit. Their role as protectors and messengers is closely related to the komainu, another guardian yōkai in the image of a lion-like dog. Just like the myōbu, the komainu are the protectors of sacred sites and thus found at many shrines throughout the country.
Hahakigami, the Broom Spirit
Yōkai often possess household objects or even structures, such as umbrellas, lamps, and tea kettles. Most of them are mischievous and dangerous, just like the futon spirit mentioned at the beginning. Some, however, act as charms. One of those is the hahakigami, or literally: broom spirit. It can be seen dancing around the house on stormy evening, frantically sweeping at leaves that are being whirled around by the wind. This seems pointless, everyone knows that sweeping while a strong wind blows does not make any sense at all, but the hahakigami is doing this purely for its own entertainment . Why is it good to keep it around? Brooms in Japan started out as a religious instruments and were swung in the air for ritual purification. As such, the hahakigami isn't a mere broom but cleans out everything that is unwanted. With a hahakigami in the house, it is ensured that childbirth will be as quick and painless as possible, because the baby is "swept" out fast and clean. It also acts as a charm against guests overstaying their visit – the hahakigami will make sure that these troublesome guests leave at the appropriate time.
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Japan's Infamous Halloween Trains
In years past, the “Halloween train” was a carriage taken over by costume-wearing foreigners, who turned it into an impromptu space for merrymaking and boozing. Tokyo’s Halloween train even sparked protests! My, how things have changed.
When riding the Midosuji Line in Osaka in late September of last year, I saw an advertisement that, no matter how many times I see it, still surprises me. “Halloween on the subway,” it read.
“Looking for participants!” read characters in yellow font. Similar events were held last year website Osaka Subway points out, and according to the poster, there will be two Halloween trains: One for the kids and a scary one for adults. These highly organized events, however, are nothing like the Halloween trains of old in which flash mobs of costume-wearing, beer-swirling foreigners descended on train cars in Osaka and Tokyo.
Halloween trains were already in full swing by the mid-1990s. They weren’t only about dressing up, drinking and, in Tokyo’s case, shouting the name of the Yamanote Line stations, but as evident in this video from 1994, silly string was also involved .
They were a way for ex-pats—even those coming from countries that do not celebrate Halloween—to have any excuse to get together, get drunk, and cause a ruckus.
Early on the Halloween train was already causing meiwaku (迷惑) or “annoyance.” Make no mistake, that’s exactly what these trains were, especially because this well before Halloween became a thing in Japan.
In 2009, Halloween still wasn’t a mainstream event in Japan. Retail hadn’t yet put its full weight behind the event, and Japan was still figuring out its own take on October 31. Imagine getting on the train after a long day of work to discover it’s been taken over by a band of drunk, noisy young people in funny costumes. If you had never celebrated Halloween, your tolerance for the whole spectacle would probably be diminished.
Imagine the mess left for station staff to clean .
Year after year, the Halloween trains continued to get more and rowdier. At the turn of the century, I remember hearing English-teacher friends say that if their school found out they rode the Halloween train, they’d lose their jobs.
Everything seemed to reach fever pitch in 2009 when protesters appeared at Shinjuku Station in Tokyo carrying signs that read, “Stupid Gaijin, Get out of Japan!” and “We Japanese Don’t Need Halloween!”
This was after police had to patrol train station platforms on Tokyo’s Yamanote Line the year before, holding up English language warning signs for the Halloweeners.
After 2009, Tokyo’s Halloween train was never quite the same. But that didn’t matter. By 2012, Halloween had caught on in Japan, with parades and events held all across the country. Trick-or-treating isn’t done like it’s traditionally been done in the U.S. (though, from what I understand, it’s changed in America somewhat), and the emphasis is more on Halloween events or, in Tokyo’s case, over-running Shibuya . Who cares about a train car when people, Japanese and foreigner, have taken over a major city hub?
The Halloween trains, however, have returned . They’re nothing like the foreigner-driven parties of the past, but instead, are highly organized tame events with webpages, rules and sign up forms. If anything, these new Halloween trains might be a way to get Halloweeners from the unbridled chaos on the streets.
Or for a new generation to become connected to All Hallows’ Eve.
This article was originally published on October 23, 2017.
10 Most Haunted Train Stations Around the World
Would you visit these haunted train stations.
Listed below are ten of the most haunted train stations around the world. Thousands of people travel to their destinations by train every year. They come and they go, rarely giving thought to the stations that they embark from as they journey to the lives that are waiting for them. But for some, train stations are their final stop. Perhaps these individuals died suddenly, before they made it to their train. Maybe they had an attachment to the location, or perhaps the station itself retains a memory of the thousands who have passed through.
10. Waterfront Station, Canada
Built in 1915, Waterfront Station has a long history as one of the most haunted sites in Vancouver. Like most historic buildings, it’s seen its fair share of drama and suffering, resulting in the appearance of lingering spirits and poltergeist like activity.
While making routine rounds, one guard witnessed the sudden appearance of a woman clad in a 1920s style flapper’s dress. Not only did he see this woman, but he also heard jazzy, 1920s music, a tune that the flapper was dancing to. When the guard attempted to approach the woman, the music stopped and she vanished, leaving the guard in a state of confusion as to where she had to gone to.
Some activity involves more than the appearance of an apparition. Guards have reported frightening poltergeist activity. In particular, a guard on night duty entered a storage room located on the east end of the station as a part of his routine patrol. Once he had entered, several desks that were stored there shifted around behind him, blocking him from the exit. When the guard turned around to discover the source of the noise, he was terribly shocked to see that the desks were the source of the racket and were obstructing his departure from the room. He was so frightened that he didn’t even bother to move the desks, instead climbing over them and running from the store room.
Other strange happenings have been reported by employees as well as visitors to the station. The apparition of a sad elderly woman in white has sometimes been seen standing in the station with outstretched arms, as if seeking help or comfort. Three ghostly women have also been seen resting on a bench, awaiting a train from the past. The most frightening apparition involves Hub Clark, a brakeman who slipped on the tracks one rainy night in 1928, resulting in his decapitation by an oncoming train. His headless ghost can sometimes be seen roaming about the tracks, swinging a glowing lantern from a ghostly hand.
9. Panteones Metro Station, Mexico
The Panteones Metro Station, located in the Colonia Argentina district, was opened in 1984 as part of an expansion of the westward line. Practically from the beginning, the station has had a reputation for being haunted, which is no surprise when you consider the fact that the station is located near two of the older cemeteries in the district and the name “Panteones” means “Graveyards”.
Screams and loud knocking have been heard in the tunnels between Tacuba station and Panteones Station. Workers have also reported frightening shadowy shapes in the tunnels, but they vanish whenever they’re approached. In 2009, a frightening video was made that recorded the terrifying screams, as well as the reactions of the frightened engineers who were working on the tracks at the time. These events are apparently not a one-time event. The frightful screams are heard in the tunnels on a regular basis late at night after the station has closed.
8. Caobao Road Subway Station, China
Caobao Road Subway Station, located in the Xuhui District has quite a haunting reputation that includes ghostly apparitions, malfunctioning train equipment, and even strange specters that attack the living. Opened on May 28th, 1993, locals refer to Caobao Road Subway Station as the “Ghost Station” because of all of the strange happenings that occur there.
There have been at least nine mysterious deaths associated with the Caobao Road Subway Station. One tale refers to the death of a man who was struck and killed while waiting for a train. Witnesses stated that they saw the man pushed off of the platform and onto the tracks by an unknown force. Others stated that it was a bizarre figure that dragged the victim onto the tracks.
The trains on this line often break down, but when maintenance teams take a look, the trains are found to be in perfect working order. Passengers often report issues with the doors on the trains, claiming that they refuse to open whenever the trains are at Caobao Station.
Even the manager of the train line is spooked by the bizarre circumstances surrounding Caobao Station. He refuses to visit the station and feels that a lot of the unusual activity associated with Caobao is related to the fact that the station is positioned near a neighboring mortuary.
7. Carlisle Station, England
Strange things are happening at Carlisle Station, located in Cumbria, Carlisle, UK, so much so that officials have hired paranormal investigators in an attempt to get to the bottom of the activities that are frightening staff and visitors alike.
Employee Stuart Davidson has reported several alarming occurrences that happened in the tunnels that run under the station. He claims to have heard disembodied voices, to have been kicked and to have seen objects thrown about when no one else was there. He also witnessed the appearance of a small boy who materialized out of a red mist along with a ghostly dog as well as the faces of two men suspended in midair.
Other haunting activities have also been noted. Some have reported the frightening apparition of a veiled woman in the tunnels, while others claim to have seen the specter of a headless man wandering around on Platform Eight.
6. Glen Eden Railway Station, New Zealand
Glen Eden Railway Station in West Auckland, New Zealand was specifically constructed to serve Waikumete Cemetery. Now a historical landmark, the original station was built in the 1880s, and the trains were used to transport both the deceased and the bereaved to the cemetery. Major restoration was done in 2001, with a café installed in the original station.
During renovations, many workers reported sightings of an apparition in the station. It was thought that it was the ghost of Alec Macfarlane, a railroad worker who died in 1924 when he was struck in the head by a mailbag hook on a passing train. Macfarlane is still seen by staff members and visitors wearing a trench coat and sporting a grey beard.
Alec Macfarlane isn’t the only spirit to put in an appearance at the Glen Eden Railway Station. Employees say that a gentleman wearing period clothing and a top hat has come into the café and requested a timetable for the train. When the employee turns to retrieve the train schedule, the gentleman disappears without a trace. Others claim to have seen the same ghost peering through the windows of the café.
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Fright Train: The three most haunted train stations in the world
Join g adventures' very own cate lorimer aboard the fright train. next stop the top three most haunted train stations in the world.
When it comes to the supernatural, we assume spirits roam the halls of insane asylums or hide in the corners of attics, only presenting themselves at the spookiest of occasions (like Hallowe’en). We can blame Hollywood, or the good old fashioned ghost story, but when it comes to the supernatural, sightings are anything but predictable, and encounters with spirits can take place at random places like the supermarket, a movie theatre, and even a train station. So in keeping with the spirit of the season, I further investigated supernatural experiences at train stations, and what I found were plenty of stories that left me scared in my tracks.
Casper the friendly ghost
Leamington Spa Station in the UK, may look like your typical train station, but it’s severely haunted. Random doors slamming shut, electrical seizures like lights flicking on and off, and the sounds of footsteps are considered child’s play. Described to be one of the most haunted buildings in Britain, Chiltern Railways felt the need to hire Nick Rees , a patrol officer who specializes in dealing with the supernatural. He walks the stations grounds daily, communicating with the spirits and insuring they stay to themselves. He says the ghosts are friendly, but I’d never want to meet them.
A 47-year-old ghost story
One night in 1967, a loyal station employee was making his rounds at the Begunkodor Train Station in India, when he noticed a woman wearing a white sari . This woman was in fact a spirit that was rumoured to have died in a nearby train accident. A few weeks later, the man who encountered the ghost suddenly dropped dead, and as word got around, employees stopped going to work in fear they would be next. The station lay abandoned for over 40 years when it finally reopened in August of 2009 after local residents pleaded for an easier mode of transportation in and out of Begunkodor. To this day, a few still believe the spirit of the woman in white lingers the station.
Vancouver’s most haunted building
Waterfront Station in Vancouver is considered one of the city’s most historic and haunted buildings. Speak to any night guard and they’ll surely tell you they’ve witnessed signs of paranormal activity like hearing soft voices and footsteps, and even spotting a woman in 1920s clothing dancing by herself in a corner of the station. Staff also believe these spirits enjoy playing tricks on them. There was one documented case where a night guard ventured into a storage room that contained old desks, and when he turned around the desks had suddenly moved and trapped him in the room. Plenty of travellers make sure to stop at Waterfront Station in hopes of having a memorable encounter.
If you don’t believe in the supernatural or just love a good ghost story and want to learn more about haunted train stations, just turn to the internet. Plenty of tales can be found about places all over the world, like Mexico’s Panteones metro station or Macquarie Fields railway station just outside Sydney. You’ll be left with goose bumps.
Happy Hallowe’en, everyone!
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Ghosts, mutant rats and Metro-2: Unearthing Moscow’s urban legends
Construction of Fonvizinskaya metro station on the Lyublinsko-Dmitriyevskaya Line in Moscow.
One of the world's most famous urban legends is about alligators allegedly inhabiting New York City's sewer system. The Russians do not lag behind the Americans in terms of the popular imagination. Some see giant rats in the metro, while others talk about ghosts and the "mutagenic radiation" of the Ostankino television tower.
The mysteries of the metro
When it comes to rumors about the Moscow subway, truth is closely intertwined with fiction. That there are classified military and government lines under the capital – the so-called "Metro-2” – is not denied even by some officials.
But enthusiasts have been unsuccessfully trying to find more accurate information for years. Is there one line there or an entire system? Or an underground city for 15,000 people? As is typical for an urban legend, there are a thousand versions of it. They are united by an aura of secrecy and danger.
"It was really scary to hear the sound of tarpaulin boots near the alleged entrance to Metro-2," said Konstantin, one of Moscow’s community of “diggers” – enthusiasts who explore subterranean bunkers, wells, tunnels and other facilities. "Is it still guarded by the KGB men, or something?"
Another Moscow resident claims her digger friend was allegedly shot at by special services while searching for Metro-2. Diggers' difficult-to-verify stories about their adventures at the closed facility add to people's curiosity.
"My grandmother told me about Metro-2 in my childhood, and then about mutant rats," recalls Moscow resident Valeria. In the 1990s, tabloids publicized stories about giant rats living in the tunnels.
So could Splinter from " Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles " find company in the Moscow catacombs? "It's all science: Radiation from rocks must cause mutations in rats," says Pavel, also from Moscow. "But they live in technical rooms, so you can't see them." In fact, of course, a large animal cannot survive in the subway.
On the surface
Not only the underground bunkers of the Soviet elite are shrouded in legends, but also quite earthly structures, such as the home of the USSR People's Commissar for State Security and Stalin's right-hand man, Lavrenty Beria.
During interrogations in 1953, Beria confessed to abducting and raping dozens of women, but the authenticity of these papers is still being debated (Beria was removed by Khrushchev in a power struggle, and the documents could have been falsified after the execution of his dangerous rival).
But the image of the sadistic Beria was firmly imprinted on the popular mind, and his house in Moscow is surrounded by dark rumors. Allegedly, an invisible car rolls on Malaya Nikitskaya Ulitsa at midnight, with its old motor rumbling. Footsteps are heard, and Beria's ghost comes to his house for violent pleasures: The curious pedestrians will soon hear a woman crying from behind walls.
Skeptics will say that the crying comes from late-working employees of the Tunisian embassy (the commissar's house is now occupied by a diplomatic mission), but this version is much more boring.
Napoleonic soldiers and a 500-year-old witch
It’s not only the city center that has legends. Many people believe that hundreds of Napoleonic soldiers were buried in the hills of Peredelkino, a holiday village in the outskirts of Moscow, in 1812. Paranormal enthusiasts imbue the mounds with mystical qualities, believing that electronics go haywire and travelers disappear there.
In reality, it is likely that there are no mass graves there. "After the difficult war with Napoleon, peasants saw its echoes everywhere, so this is an old myth," researchers of the Museum of Moscow told RBTH. "In the 19th century, archaeologists excavated Slavic mounds from the 10th and 11th centuries. But the inhabitants of the surrounding villages still considered them to be the graves of French soldiers."
The Ostankino neighborhood, where Europe's highest TV tower is located, is also mythologized. It is allegedly haunted by the ghost of an old woman, who was murdered in the 16th century. Now she walks around and predicts disasters.
The 500-year-old witch is believed to have predicted the high-profile murder of well-known TV journalist Vlad Listyev and a fire at Ostankino in 2000. Sometimes these stories are complemented by vivid details – for example, the furniture in Listyev's office was allegedly gnawed after his death by animals, mutated by the tower's radiation.
There are less bloody rumors: for example, one about a bulldozer embedded by builders in the TV center's building by mistake. Yana Sidorova, the author of a study about the legends of Ostankino, says the TV center's staff does not really believe in these sorts of stories, but is happy to spread them.
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Train stations in Moscow
Moscow is not only the capital of Russiabut also a center for education, politics, culture, transport, and economy. It hasa lot of history and attracts many tourists per year. The most common transportis the train and in the city, you will find nine different train stations. Thenames of them come from routes they are serving.
Address: 3 Komsomolskaya Sq.
It is the oldest train station in Moscowand located near the metro station Komsomolskaya. The trains from here go to North-WesternRussia, including St.Petersburg, Novgorod, Petrozavodsk, Murmansk, Finland andEstonia. The railway station got constructed by the architect KonstantinThron in the design of the Moskovsky train station in Saint Petersburg. It hadbeen built from 1844 to 1851. It has already had several names and wasrenovated in 1950 and 1972. It is notable that the amount of passengers isconstantly increasing.
Yaroslavlsky Train Station
Address: 5 Komsomolskaya Sq.
The train station is located near theLeningradsky train station at the matro station Komsomolskaya. TheTrans-Siberian route passes also this train station and trains from here leaveto Golden Ring, North-Eastern Russia, the Russian Far East, Mongolia and China.From all the nine train stations in Moscow, this one has the highest number ofpassengers.
Kazansky Train Station
Address: 2 Komsomolskaya Sq.
The train station is also located next tothe metro station Komsomolskaya. The trains leave to Kazan, Tatarstan, Urals,Central Asia and South of Russia. Times of construction of this modern trainstation was between 1913 and 1940 designed by the architect Alexey Shchusev.The train station in its design looks like the Söyembikä Tower in Kazan.
Belorussky Train Station
Address: 7 Tverskaya Zastava Sq.
The trains from here leave to Belorus,Kaliningrad (Russia), Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, the CzechRepublic. The architect Ivan Strukov constructed it and it was opened in1870 but renovated from 1910-1912. It is connected to the airport and alsotakes some local routes to the suburb of Moscow.
Kievsky Train Station
Address: 2 Kievskogo Vokzala Sq.
The train station is situated near themetro station Kievskaya and takes routes to the Ukraine and SoutheasternEurope. It was designed by Ivan Rerberg and Vladimir Shukhov in1914-1918. It is the only train station in the city from which you can directlylook at the Moscow river.
Kursky Train Station
Address: 29 Zemlyanoi Val St.
The train station takes routes to Vladimir,Nizhny Novgorod, Oryol, Perm, Southern Russia, Caucasus, Eastern Ukraine,Crimea. Metro stations next to it are Kurskaya and Chkalovskaya. The firstconstruction has been made by N.P. Orlov in 1896 and it has been reconstructedby G.I. Voloshinov in 1972.
Paveletsky Train Station
Address: 1 Paveletskaya Sq.
The train station takes routes for longdistances to Almaty, Voronezh, Baku, Luhansk, Saratov, Donetsk, Tambov,Lipetsk, Volgograd, Yelets and Astrakhan. It has a connection to the Domodedovoairport. It is a very old train station first constructed by A. Krasovskiy in1900 and reconstructed by A.Gurkov, S.Kuznetsova and A.Vorontsov in 1987. Thenew construction is much bigger and has a high volume of traffic.
Rizhsky Train Station
Address: 79/3 Rizhskaya Sq.
It is situated next to the metro station Rizhskayaand takes routes to Baltic countries. It opened in 1901, designed by S. Brzhozovskywho was also involved in the construction of the Vitebsky station in SaintPetersburg. As well, the station has had already a lot of different names. Thetrain station received its current name in 1946. It is a very modern one and isalso mentioned in the Moscow Railway Museum.
Savyolovsky Train Station
Address: Savyolovskogo Vokzala Sq.
The train station takes routes to northern Moscow but also to long-distance destinations: Kostroma, Cherepovets, Vologda (Russia). There is also a connection to the airport Sheremetyevo. The nearest metro station is Savyolovskaya. The times of construction were between 1897 and 1902 and is named after a village that is located along the route. On occasion to its 90th anniversary, it had been reconstructed.
- Trains between Moscow and Saint Petersburg read
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