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Taxi Drivers Report Picking Up Ghosts of Victims of 2011 Tsunami In Japan

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Taxi Drivers Report Picking Up Ghosts of Victims of 2011 Tsunami In Japan

Whether or not you believe in ghosts, the eerily similar stories told by seven Japanese taxi drivers shortly after the devastating 2011 tsunami are enough to give anyone the shivers.

They all work in the coastal town of Ishinomaki, a prefecture in Japan where 6,000 people died in 30-foot-high waves. In the months afterward, they claim to have picked up ghost passengers, the Telegraph reported.

In all cases, the ghost passengers entered the taxi, asked to be brought their destination, and then disappeared, leaving their fare unpaid.

Their stories were discovered and collected by a college student named Yuka Kudo, 22, Japanese newspaper the Asahi Shimbun reported. She’s a sociology major at Tohoku Gakuin University and compiled the paranormal encounters for her graduate thesis.

Kudo is from a prefecture that was spared in the 2011 tsunami, and before talking to these spooked taxi drivers, she thought of the natural disaster’s victims as “thousands of people” in a detached sort of way. She’s since changed her mind.

2011 tsunami in Japan killed nearly 16,000 people
Ishinomaki, Japan. [Photo by Getty Images]

“I learned that the death of each victim carries importance. I want to convey that.”

Every week in her junior year, Yuka headed to Ishinomaki. She hopped into waiting cabs and asked the drivers, “Did you have any unusual experiences after the disaster?”

Most of the 100 she asked ignored her question, some got angry, but seven talked of ghost passengers they picked up shortly after the tsunami.

Their stories are both eerie and heart-wrenching.

One driver said he picked up a woman in a coat in early summer, several months after the tsunami.

“Please go to the Minamihama (district),” the woman said.

He told her the area was empty — it had been devastated by the tsunami. Then, she asked a very strange question in a shaking voice.

“Have I died?”

The question was enough to make the driver turn to look in the back seat, but no one was there.

Another driver spoke of a man possibly in his 20s who climbed into his cab. He spied the stranger through the rear-view mirror, pointing forward. He asked the man for his destination and the ghost passenger said “Hiyoriyama,” which means mountain. When they arrived, the man vanished.

Are these stories just illusions? Perhaps, but Kudo makes an interesting point that weakens this explanation. All who talked about ghost passengers started their meters once the riders enter their cab.

The meter is recorded. And when the ghost passengers disappeared, they had to pay their fares. Some of the seven who spoke to Yuka had recorded the experience in their logs, and one had a report that proved his unpaid fare.

That the ghost passengers are primarily young doesn’t shock Kudo either. Perishing suddenly in a tsunami at a young age would leave the victim “strongly chagrined” when they couldn’t find their loved ones.

“Young people feel strongly chagrined (at their deaths) As they want to convey their bitterness, they may have chosen taxis, which are like private rooms, as a medium to do so.”

Interestingly, none of the drivers were scared of their ghost passengers, but revered them, considering the interaction as an important gift.

2011 tsunami in Japan killed nearly 16,000 people
[Photo by US Navy/Getty Images]

These ghost passengers aren’t the only paranormal tale to emerge after the devastating tsunami. The stats from that day are sobering: 15,893 people died after the magnitude 9 earthquake, which lasted for six minutes and set off a tsunami that crested in some spots at 133 feet high and reached inland six miles. About 2,500 are still missing.

Years later, survivors in these devastated coastal towns have seen ghosts wandering around where homes used to be, lining up outside shops that have long since been razed. Others have seen headless ghosts, bodies without limbs, and have claimed to be possessed by spirits.

For the taxi drivers of Ishinomaki, none of this is unheard of.

“It is not strange to see a ghost [here]. If I encounter a ghost again, I will accept it as my passenger.”

Entrepreneur, contributor, writer, and editor of Sostre News. With a powerful new bi-lingual speaking generation by his side, Sostre News is becoming the preferred site for the latest in Politics, Entertainment, Sports, Culture, Tech, Breaking and World News.

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Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

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Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

Would you pay $1200 a month for a bunk bed in a shared space? Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are opting for pods in communal home with a desk, locker and personal TV

With the cost of rent continuing to rise, some Americans are taking unusual measures to find a place to sleep.

In Los Angeles and San Francisco, where prices are particularly exorbitant, people have taken to renting bunk beds in communal homes.

PodShare, which provides 10 to 15 co-ed bunkbeds in six locations across California, is hoping to help solve the affordable housing crisis.

The beds can be rented from $35 to $50 a night, which amounts to between $1,050 and $1500 for one month.

Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

The beds can be rented from $35 to $50 a night, which amounts to between $1,050 and $1500 for one month. Pictured: Bunkbeds at a PodShare location

 

Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

Every ‘pod’ comes with a bed that turns into a desk, individual power outlets, a locker, a shelf and a personal TV. Pictured: A resident at one of the PodShare locations

It’s no secret that housing prices have rapidly spiked over the last decade and incomes have not kept up

One 2018 study published found that only about one-third of millennials currently own homes.

This is fewer than the number of Generation Xers and baby boomers who owned homes when they were the same age.

And a study conducted by Harvard University this year found that one-in-three Americans can’t afford to pay rent.

It’s unsurprising considering that, in cities such as San Francisco, the average rent for an apartment is about $3,900.

But for $1,200, if you rent with PodShare everyone gets a bed that turns into a desk, individual power outlets, a locker, a shelf and a personal TV.

Each location also provides a communal living room, food such as cereal, toiletries such as toilet paper, laundry machines and WiFi access, reported CNN.

Tenants are known as ‘pod-estrians’.

Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

Additionally, each location has a communal living room, a kitchen (pictured), laundry machines and WiFi access. Pictured: One of the kitchens

 

Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

The company was founded in 2012 by 34-year-old Elvina Beck. Pictured: One of the communal workspaces

Although the set-up may seem like an adult dormitory or a hostel, the company uses the term ‘co-living’.

‘PodShare makes life more affordable because there is no security deposit or cost of furnishings and we provide flexible living,’ co-founder Elvina Beck told Vice in 2016.

‘Pod life is the future for singles which are not looking to settle down, but focus on their startups and experience something new.’

There are no curtains to close off the beds, and the only doors are to the bathroom, reported Time Out Los Angeles.

Although there’s no privacy, pod-residents are willing to exchange that for affordability or a reduced travel time to work.

Beck, 34, told CNN that she founded the company in 2012 because she wanted to meet new people and provide housing security to others.

‘Maybe they don’t have two months’ rent to put down or they don’t have proof of income,’ she said.

‘Whether it’s from a divorce or their family kicked them out for being gay or because they’re in a different country or a different city.’

Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

Beck says that most of the early residents were between ages 24 and 30, and that now they are in their late 20s or early 30s. Pictured: Lockers at one PodShare location

 

Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are Paying $1200 a Month for a Bunk Bed in a Shared Space

Hard rules that each tenant must follow include: lights have to be off by 10pm, no guests are allowed and tenants can’t have sex. Pictured: Bunkbeds at one PodShare location

She told CNN that, when she began PodShare, most residents were between ages 24 and 30. Today, however, most ‘tenants’ are in their late 20s or early 30s.

Additionally, many of the early residents were young adults who had just moved to a new city. But many new residents are older adults and even those traveling on business.

However, there some rules that people are required to follow. Lights have to be off by 10pm, no guests are allowed and tenants can’t have sex.

‘You can’t invite any friends over,’ Beck told CNN. ‘Sorry. Just make new ones here.’

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Caretaker Ties a Wheelchair-Bound Pensioner to a Tree by The Neck

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Caretaker Ties a Wheelchair-Bound Pensioner to a Tree by The Neck

Shocking footage of a wheelchair-bound pensioner being tied to a tree by the neck by a caretaker has sparked controversy in China.

The caretaker claimed to have no other way but to bind her frail client with a rope because she had to rush back home to deal with family emergency.

Furious onlookers demanded the caretaker free the pensioner immediately. The domestic worker defended her act by calling the incident ‘no big deal’.

The video was reportedly shot in Beijing recently, according to local news outlet Btime.com.

Related: Killer Snatched Girl, 11, Suffocated Her Then Dumped Corpse in Sewer

The pensioner appeared extremely distressed throughout the video and could not speak clearly.

One angry male passer-by accused the caretaker: ‘How would you feel if your daughter treated you like this?’

He criticised the caretaker and said she should bring the pensioner with her.

The caretaker replied: ‘[If I had] pushed her back, she would tell [on me].’

Another female bystander pointed out that the pensioner neck had turned red because of the rough treatment.

After being lambasted by eyewitnesses, the caretaker untied the pensioner and pushed her away.

Authority said the clip had been uploaded onto the social media by residents in a neighbourhood called Nanyuan on the outskirts of southern Beijing.

But they had not been able to identify the exact location of the incident or track down the individuals involved.

Police have been alerted of the video and launched an investigation, according to Beijing Evening News.

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Comforting Shelter Dogs During Fireworks Is The New Independence Day Tradition

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Comforting Shelter Dogs During Fireworks Is The New Independence Day Tradition

“Calming the Canines,” at Maricopa County Animal Care and Control (MCACC), is a new Independence Day tradition.

Comforting Shelter Dogs During Fireworks Is The New Independence Day Tradition

Last year, over 300 people from the community showed up at the shelter’s two locations around Phoenix, Arizona.

It was overwhelming to see how the community responded. It really helped spread our message that MCACC is here to help.

Comforting Shelter Dogs During Fireworks Is The New Independence Day Tradition

Amy Engel, who attended Calming the Canines last year said that she definitely plans on attending this year, too.

Engel wrote about her experience last year

Some people sang to them, some people read to them, some people just sat there and gave treats! It was so, so awesome because the dogs absolutely love the attention and were focused on the people and not the fireworks going on outside.

Comforting Shelter Dogs During Fireworks Is The New Independence Day Tradition

MCACC wrote:

Many participants developed lasting relationships with the shelter, returning to provide foster care, adopt a pet or volunteer.

The shelter suggests people to bring blankets to sit on, or folding chairs, and to let the dog or cat approach them to sit calmly and quietly.

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