The tiny settlement, clinging to the mountainside, is overlooked by the impressive Inamura Rock. There are only about 60 residents, and the school has been closed for a long time. But the location is unique: this is part of Tokyo metropolitan area yet you’d think the village wants to stay hidden as far away as possible, out of sight.
History bears this out. Civil war was rampant in 14th-century Japan, with Emperor Go-Daigo in constant confrontation with the shogunate. The samurai warriors in the pay of the emperor lost the battle on the Kansai front, so in search of a haven of peace they took refuge at Inamura, founding Nippara below the protective rocky barrier.
What most fascinates me is that this village is still there centuries later, safeguarded by the rock and the samurai descendants, despite the implausibility of its very existence.
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