Tesso (The iron rat) is truly a one of a kind yokai. A rat demon the size of a full-grown man, armed with metal teeth and claws, capable of shredding and tearing almost anything. Combine this with a pied-piper like ability to call a legion of real rats to do his destructive bidding, and Tesso becomes quite a formidable foe to be reckoned with
Today’s yokai shares something in common with Hashi Hime in that also Tesso began life as a human, a buddhist monk named Raigo, but was later transformed into a vengeful yokai. Again it was sheer force of will, and a driving anger, that provde the catalyst for the transformation.
I already knew the basic story of how Raigo came to turn into his rodent form, however as Raigo’s temple (Mii-Dera) is not far from where I live, I decided to make the trip there and see if I could dig up anything connected with the myth.
Yet I’m glad I did as this extended return visit turned up quite a lot more information about the history of the place as well revealing several things I missed on my first (brief) visit.
I also got a perfect answer to the question I was left with after my last visit – Why did they call a huge ferris wheel ‘Biwako Tower’ ? (more…)
In honour of getting a comment from Michael (aka: Gakuranman, who has some fantastic hikyo posts on his site) on my recent Haikyo – Starting Small entry I’ve decided to do a tribute to his latest blog post Fifteen Fantastic Froggie Fotos and post fifteen frog fotos of my own.
15 froggy points if you can guess which picture wasn’t taken in Japan! (more…)
What does Haikyo mean?
Haikyou is a cover-all term used to describe any abandoned place. From recently bankrupt hotels to decaying ruins; like this one on the banks of Lake Biwa. Japan has a wealth of these places, being a post economic boom society with a declining population, they stand as evidence of Japan’s more prosperous and populous past. Domestic, leisure and industrial ghosts that haunt the villages and cities of Japan. (more…)