The faces of Fujino
Hiryū-san is infectiously creative and jubilant. Two years ago, he started building an eco-village. He purchased an abandoned warehouse in the center of his hamlet of Tsunago and began transforming it into a gathering place. “I didn’t want an abandoned eyesore as the centerpiece of my hamlet so I decided to create something special for the community.” He is applying permaculture methods for temperature control, waste, and water. His construction materials are scrap wood, discarded windows, glass bottles, used car tires, disposed blocks of rock, and any other scrap materials the local people wish to donate. The eco-village is gradually taking shape with a kitchen, bar, coffee bean roasting room, an art gallery, and several artisan studios. “My enthusiasm attracts everything that I need. When I am enthusiastic, people bring free construction materials and volunteer to plan, design, and build.” Hiryū-san and his wife Yukiyo-san life near the eco-village. About once per month, they open an evening café at their house.
Tell us something about yourself.
When I was a young boy, the teacher asked the students what they want to be when they grow up. My answer was different from the other children. I responded, “When I grow up, I want to be Hiryū.” I continue to strive to live true to myself.
What is something special that you like about Fujino?
A current trend in Japan is to visit “power spots.” A power spot is a natural or spiritual place with strong energy flow that people can sense when relaxed and attuned to the environment. I think the power spots of Fujino are embodied in certain people whom I like to think of as “power spot people.” My interaction with these enthusiastic, collaborative, and forward-looking “power spot people” convinced me that Fujino is the best place for me to make my home.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
Fujino culture is shaped by people who live to enjoy life. Similar to how a child becomes engrossed in play, I think many adults in Fujino continue this childhood experience as they focus on activities they really love to do.
The ground level of Hiryū-san’s house is a dedicated workshop for kaleidoscope making. Hiryū-san has a gallery kaleidoscopes of various sizes, designs, and materials. He can guide you to make a unique one-of-a-kind kaleidoscope at his workshop.
See other Fujino residents.