We bought the SoraHouse for US$9,100 and now it’s time to see if we’re sitting on a goldmine.

Just a few months ago, our boss Yoshio purchased a property in the mountains of Saitama, Tokyo’s neighbouring prefecture to the north, for a meagre one million yen (US$9,100).

The property includes a two-storey house with a total of 131 square metres (1,410 square feet) of floor space, and a parcel of land measuring 353 square metres (3,800 square feet), which comes with its very own river and waterfall.

Needless to say, Yoshio and his faithful reporters have been itching to explore the nature-filled setting, which has remained untouched by humans for a number of years now. And this week, Yoshio decided to start the exploration…by throwing his iPhone into the river and letting it sail downstream.

Experience has taught us to always hear out these crazy ideas from the gang before questioning them, and when Yoshio explained that he would be setting his phone to record, in order to see what lay on the riverbed, we figured this might not be such a zany idea after all.

▼ Plus, he was all set to use protection.

Yoshio got to work, placing his iPhone into a case and slipping it into a soft waterproof pouch for added protection. Then, to give the phone some extra buoyancy, he taped the whole thing…to a slipper.

▼ Up there for thinking, down there for dancing.

With his iPhone now ready to venture off on an adventure of a lifetime, Yoshio set off towards the river with the hard-hatted Go Hatori on hand to act as mission support.

With Yoshio in position upstream, and Go further downstream, our intrepid boss checked that the phone was recording and added some final tape to secure his phone firmly in the slipper, all the while being careful to ensure the view from the camera lens was unobstructed.

▼ Ready…

▼ …set…

▼ …go!!!

Yoshio’s iPhone hurtled downstream at a much faster speed than anyone had expected….

▼ …before getting stuck by a rocky outcrop midstream.

▼ Yoshio was immediately on the case, though, working fast to fix to the problem.

All this countryside air had given him the energy to leap between rocks with the same carefree abandon as a child playing with a toy boat.

▼ Look at him go!

Yoshio released his phone-boat from the rocks and off it went on its merry way again.

He gleefully followed its progress down the stream, keeping a watchful eye on the journey at all times.

At this point, Go too had tapped into his inner child, springing into action when the phone hit another rocky barrier on its way downstream.

Thanks to the help of its overseers, the slipper was now flowing freely, with the camera sometimes facing up and sometimes facing down, which made everyone wonder how much of the riverbed we’d be able to asses in the end.

Then, the slipper stopped at this area at the bottom of the stream, swirling around for a bit until Yoshio and Go decided it was a sign to retrieve the phone and stop filming.

▼ Good thing Go was able to catch it before it disappeared into the tunnel!

Ripping away all the protective layers, we were finally able to play the video, which gave us a close-up look at what lay inside our little river. We have to admit, it was a fun and surprisingly efficient way to survey a large swathe of riverbed in a short space of time, and the footage stayed amazingly sharp throughout.

With the water quality in our little river so crystal clear, we were able to get a good look beneath the waters. Despite having our eyes peeled for shiny specks the whole time, we weren’t able to spy any glints of gold in the footage, though. However, there is a chance we may have missed something, so if you see something in the footage, let us know!

▼ Take a look at the full, unedited footage, which includes all the little stops and starts, below:

We may have to get out the gold pans next, for an even closer look at the rocks and sediment in our little river. Still, regardless of whether or not we’re sitting on a goldmine, now that the explorations have begun at our little house in the countryside, we’re even more keen to get started on transforming this patch of nature into our idyllic dream spot.

Watch this space for more developments!

Photos ©SoraNews24
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