DI sebalik populariti Kampung Tashiro sebagai 'Pulau Kucing', kebanyakan warga pulau ini yang sudah lanjut usia mengharapkan perkara lain iaitu kedatangan warga baru.
Dihuni oleh kira-kira 100 orang yang purata usia mereka 70 tahun ke atas, komuniti Tashiro berharap kucing-kucing dapat menjadi magnet yang menarik pelancong sekali gus menambah jumlah penghuni desa.
Tashiro tidak didiami seekor anjing pun. Selain itu, pemandangan yang biasa dilihat di kota-kota moden Jepun tiada di sini. Tiada pasar raya atau lampu trafik.
Populasinya telah menurun 10 kali ganda sejak tahun 1960 kerana banyak warga berpindah ke bandar lain.
Namun beberapa tahun lalu, Tashiro mula terkenal sebagai Pulau Kucing. Pada masa itu, sebuah stesen televisyen membuat siaran langsung tentang Jack the Lop Ear, seekor kucing jantan berbelang hitam putih.
Jack bukan kucing pertama yang menjadi idola nasional di Jepun. Tahun lalu, seekor kucing bernama Tama diangkat sebagai 'ketua' stesen kereta api Kinokawa di wilayah Wakayama.
Sebuah topi ketua stesen turut diberikan kepadanya. Kehadiran Tama turut mengundang kedatangan pelancong ke pekan kecil itu.
Di Tashiro, para nelayan sering memberi ikan kepada beribu-ribu ekor kucing yang ada. Haiwan itu sangat mudah dilihat di pulau seluas 314 kilometer persegi yang terletak 20 kilometer dari pelabuhan Ishinomaki di utara Jepun itu.
VILLAGE Tashiro known in Japan as the 'Island of Cats'. But now that most citizens expect the aging of other things that the arrival of new residents. Inhabited by 100 residents, an average of over 70 years, Tashiro community expects the cat can be a magnet in a campaign to attract tourists and ultimately increase the number of inhabitants of the village.
"When viewed through this village seemed so peaceful. But if for example there is a fire, no one could help us. I hope that many young people move here. In Tashiro many residents who want to teach them how to catch fish," said Yutaka Hama, 49, as head of tourism promotion agency Tashiro.
Hama moved to Tashiro several years ago and is now also making a living as a manager for lodging and fishing. His wife, Aiko, is by far the youngest women in her village at the age of 37 years. Besides Aiko, most women Tashiro has over 60 years of age.
Tashiro not even a dog occupied. In addition, the views are commonly seen in modern cities in Japan are also absent. Call it for example, department stores, traffic lights until the children. Human population there has declined tenfold since 1960, since many residents move to another city.
But a few years ago, Tashiro rose to fame as the 'Island of Cats'. It was a television station to create a show about Jack the Lop Ear, striped male cat in black and white. Now Jack is the main attraction in town. Her movements are slow compared to other cats only made his popularity skyrocket.
"I was so happy to see Jack. After retiring, I want to stay here," said Shiho Amano, 18, who loves cats. Special Amano came from Nagoya to Tashiro to witness the exhibition of photographs held by the tourism promotion agency. His cell phone is full of photographs of famous cat.
Jack was not the first cat who became a national idol in Japan. Not also the first to be able to bring luck to a locality. Last year a cat named Tama was appointed as a "leader" Kinokawa train station in Wakayama prefecture.
A hat was given to her station. Tama presence ushered tourists come to come to town.
Tashiro fishermen often give fish to the cat, the cat's presence so easily detected in the island area of 3.14 square kilometers and is located 20 kilometers from the port of Ishinomaki in northern Japan.
Sumber artike : Kosmo Online dan worldthinkingnow.blogspot.com