Giogo Yujiro Taniyama, Japan Broadcasting . net Corporation travel correspondent


Useless jump on a useless road.

That, ladies, laities and gentlemen is just exactly what I had attempted, just three days ago. Unthinking and breathtaking as it was, let me please notify you in advance the exact name and location of this useless road.

‘Hakone Turnpike’ – as it is publicly called; connects the unimportant fishy seaside hamlet of Odawara (小田原)- which lies roughly 80min train ride southwest from Tokyo, and the renowned onsen resort of Hakone (箱根)at the foot of Fujiyama – where the most prominent Beatle John Lennon half a century ago occasionally visited with his Nipponese spouse of whom incidentally and consequently lacerated the world’s most famous British rock band. Please google Hakone Turnpike, and you’ll easily find the protagonist of this useful report.

To make a long story short, a human shadow was beautifully indiscernible while I drove uphill perpetually along this unfamiliar 13km toll road (it was like climbing Mt.Fuji on a metal vehicle), at 29km/h. Correct, nobody uses it. Tuesday morning 10:30 it was, and all I witnessed were three birds, three clouds, and three cars that passed by nonchalantly from the opposite direction.

“Preposterous! What a waste! What’s this road for anyway?”, roared the useless stranger who was hurriedly making his way to drive his important client to Lake Ashinoco in Hakone. “I had paid”, he continued and panted like a puppy, “an exorbitant sum of 730 yen for this ridiculously unpopular ‘shortcut’ climb that’s eating up all the fuel! Damnation!”.


Nevertheless, laities and gentlewomen, the ‘useless road’ did have its upsides. Beneath the salubrious firmament, my client and I quickly come to realize that we had time-slipped or warped to Monaco of the Mediterranean. From the mountain peaks we could observe not the bloody Mediterranean but the prodigiously blue Pacific Ocean. The memory of bonny Grace Kelly in Hitchcock’s Rear Window emerged out of the blue. True, the useless road was a reminiscent of the indelible bus trip that I had taken just before the Corona pandemic – from Nice to Grace Kelly Land.

The buds of Hydrangea at ‘resting-parking-lots’ were so spectacular, that we didn’t give a second thought about revisiting the place in a month time; when the delightful plant would be in full bloom.

And lastly and foremost, just by installment of seven hundred and thirty yen, you could de-facto own the entire  scope that is totally liberated from the noises, bollocks and havocs of sentient beings. Yes, we owned the world! The entire stinking planet!

So in conclusion, the useless travel reporter humbly recommends that should you ever visit Tokyo, don’t you ever, ever dare to rent a HONDA or whatever and sneak your way into this useless road. Otherwise I, Giogo Yujiro Stupido Magnifico will no longer be able to relish my highly private undertakings with Grace.

Keep your fowl mouth shut gals and nincompoops!