I love my life in Tokyo but the more days I spend on a train surrounded by concrete high rises, the more I crave nature.
"Enter Mt Takao"
What I loved most about this place, is that there is something for everyone - a cable car for those just wanting to take in the sights, beautiful temples and shrines for those wanting a cultural experience, a beautiful looking waterfall and the Inariyama trail - a good ol' hiking path.
We opted for the waterfall trail and then took the Inariyama trail by accident. (note: the signs are in English...don't ask how we got this confused) so it wasn't the relaxing walk we intended to do...
However! Here are my personal pro's and con's to this trail:
* It was much quieter and when we did pass people, we always exchanged a 'konnichiwa'
* I now know this was a sign of mutual respect for entering the climb of pain
* Birds were singing which was just lovely
* It eventually links up with trail 6, the waterfall trail.
* I felt bad ass walking up a river crossing.
* There's a lookout that is quite nice
* Not a relaxing stroll.
* Begins up a hill of many stairs. Hill continues.
* A lot of the other people had walking poles. We could have benefited from this also.
* If you are catching the train home in peak hour, standing is not fun afterwards
* Not scenic compared to some of the other trails
The way down was a completely different experience. This mountain has got some serious temples and shrines. Seeing these beautiful buildings and monuments has got to be one of my highlights in Japan so far.
Unlike the Inariyama trail, these paved paths were filled with tourists, families and couples there to enjoy a relaxing afternoon.
If you've never taken a cable car. Come here just to do that. It's seriously cool and fun. (I recommend listening to 'how to save a life' by the Fray in anticipation)
I also made a vlog of our mountain journey which you can check out here.
THIS ALL SOUNDS GREAT BUT HOW DO I GET HERE?
Take the Keio Line to Takaosanguchi station. It takes under an hour from Shinjuku station.
Any more questions? Have you been here before? Comment me below!
I thought about naming this blog post 'the blood, sweat and tears that went on behind the scenes of creating Not The Same' because it certainly wasn't a straight road from A to B.
I had a very clear vision of what I wanted - many people thought I was channelling Lady Gaga but I was actually drawing inspiration from Japanese shironuri fashion - in particular, the artist and fashion icon Minori. I wanted to wear a dream like, etherial costume that would kind of blend into the forest.
I also wanted to find an absolutely stunning dress for the shots inside...ala J'Aton Couture.
I spent days of dedicated, focused music video dress shopping and kept coming back empty handed feeling like I'd simply wasted a whole lot of time.
So I went to Spotlight, (THE material/arts and crafts store for all you peeps not from Australia), bought a bunch of material and hassled the staff for sewing tips. I had never sewed in my life but I was completely prepared to do it!
Just as my sewing career was about to kick off (sarcasm with a hint of 'we'll never know'), my friend told me about a really cool vintage store that I should check out so the next day I headed to Tum Vintage and found SO many amazing things! More material plus an absolutely beautiful silver floor length dress that I decided would be perfect.
I met the owner aka amazing fashion designer and dress maker Jonathan Pampling and told him what I was doing, showed him my inspiration pics and told him that I'd bought a bunch of material.
To cut a long story short, the material ended up in the incredibly capable hands of Athan and became the amazing piece in the pic above.
The silver floor length gown? Ta da! Athan upcycled it, making this amazing purple dress. I'm still in awe of the fact of the length of the train - no material was added! Just very strategic cutting.
I'm so glad I decided not to settle for something store bought. When I was preparing to sew, I actually cut up one of my vintage dresses at home that I quite liked - if quick unpicking a beloved dress to try your hand at sewing for art is not an act of faith, I don't know what is!
I truly believe in the law of attraction. It might sound strange, but I believe that shifting my mindset and taking greater action is what led me further in the right direction. Not only did my vision become clearer but I met someone who 'got' what I was doing right away (very different story at Spotlight), who's work I absolutely admire and who continues to inspire me.
Keep working, dreaming, planning and being brave x
You can check out the vid here
I'm Holly! Songwriter, singer, writer and musician.