Even magnetic hills have their attractions in world of weird

Even magnetic hills have their attractions in world of weird
June 24, 2010
The Standard

here are many bizarre and inexplicable phenomena in the world today, such as sightings of UFOs, appearances of Bigfoot, and the existence of buyers of Miley Cyrus CDs. But most amazing of all is the growing number of places which make your head go boom.
I found a new one just outside my house the other day.

A head-exploding location is a place where you stop, look around and say: "Huh?!" Internet addicts say: "WTF?" Drinkers say: "I gotta lay off the drink," before racing off for a quick shot (recommended amount: 1.4 liters) of whiskey.

The internet community recently discovered a long-celebrated head- exploding location in Asia, I heard from reader Eric Chiu.

Magnetic Hill in Ladakh, Kashmir, is a TOTALLY fun place to visit. You go there and place your hire car in a white box painted on the pavement with the brakes off. After a few seconds, the car starts rolling UPHILL. It gathers speed. You'll gape in astonishment.

If you have been stupid enough to forget to leave someone inside your car, the vehicle reaches quite a high speed and smashes itself to pieces against rocks. What fun! Daddy will laugh and laugh when he gets the bill.

This is particularly fun for proprietors of car-repair shops in the vicinity who stand on the roadside cheering: "Again! Again!"

Eric asked whether it was "real." The answer is yes. How does it work? There are three theories. One says there's a huge natural magnet in the mountain that draws everything up toward it, in the same way that shoes of property developers magically draw the tongues of government officials.

The second says that all horizon lines in that area are tilted so your brain resets itself to perceive downhill slopes as uphill ones.

The third theory, and the one that appeals most to razor-sharp scientific minds such as mine, says that the Buddha's toe bone is hidden in the mountain and has an affinity to draw sport utility vehicles to itself, to fulfill some ancient prophecy. ("And it shall come to pass that The Venerable Toe Bone shall summon unto itself many ornate chariots which cometh from the East and beareth names such as the Toyota 4Runner SUV.")

There's another magnetic hill in Gansu, China, and one in the Laguna area of the Philippines.

On the steep hillside where I live in Pok Fu Lam, a high road and a low road meet. Seen from the low road, the high road slopes steeply down. But seen from the high road, only the low road slopes up. Going from one to the other makes you think "Huh?!" You can use it to puzzle the simple- minded, such as small children, dogs, Greek finance ministers, and so on.

If there's one thing I have learned, it's this: there is nothing too weird to exist somewhere on this planet. Which is why top scientists are right now trying to work out explanations for mysterious sightings of Bigfoot, UFOs, and buyers of Miley Cyrus CDs. The last is the most puzzling.

See the street mentioned at www.mrjam.org
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