Trip 3rd day
September 23rd
Sapporo - Asahikawa - Engaru (Green line)

We woke up about 5AM to say good-bye to Yoko since she has to leave home at 5:30AM. We wanted to drive as long as possible so we left Sapporo about 6:30AM.

Our car started to act funny. It does not pick up speed as usual. I have to step on the accelerator harder. We saw a Subaru dealer and stopped if they give us any suggestion. It was Holiday, the Autumnal Equinox, and they said that their mechanics were off but one guy just came by. They were kind enough to check our car. But we got negative report. They said that the transmission had worn out, and the car would not run much longer. But their mechanics were off, and they do not have any transmission to replace. There is no way for them to fix this problem. They warned us not to drive too far like we planned. They even suggest to use a rental car. We thanked them and started to drive again. This is the vacation God provided. We believed God's protection over this trip. We decided to continuously believe God for good trip.

We ate lunch at Asahikawa, and kept driving East.
On the way to Engaru
We arrived Engaru 4:30 PM. This is one of our students, Yocchi's hometown. He wanted us to meet his parents. We called his mother, and decided to meet her the next morning. It was already evening. So we decided to stay this town tonight. We wanted to see famous big Rock, Gambo Iwa before it became dark.
Top of Gambo Iwa We met three young people at the top of the big Rock. They came from Kitami City, one hour drive from Engaru. We told them that their picture maybe on the web. We kept our promise. Hopefully they give us e-mail. This rock is 78m (260feet or about 26 stories) high. There is no guard rail. We wondered if there were people jumping down. we found the answer next day .
John with Teens We visited Engaru museum, and a city officer said that they considered putting fence on this Rock before to avoid suicide. But this rock was a Holy place for Ainu people, and they wanted to keep the place as it was. Suppose there were fence, people would go over and jump if they really want to die. He did not say how many but indicated there are some people jump from the rock every year.
Gambo Iwa(rock)
We found City camping ground near this Rock. We saw tree shape bungalows and wanted to use one. But we can't find anybody at the management building. We decided to sleep on the lawn in the sleeping bag we brought. But we kept hearing noises, and everything started to get wet. We finally decided to move into our little car and slept there. It was already cold.
Sunny Hill amusement park
We found that Engaru is rather new town just over 100 years old, and pioneers of this town were mostly Christians. It is very unusual here in Japan. But Yocchi did not know that. Most people living there probably do not know this fact. But I thought it was worth to write down.
Sunny hill park in Engaru

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