Well, this is unexpected.
Seven-year-old Japanese boy Yamato Tanooka, who was feared dead after being left alone in the mountains of Hokkaido by his parents six days ago, has reportedly been found alive.
Japanese news outlet NHK World reports that the boy has been found in good health in a disused military building, and his parents have confirmed his identity.
Now that the boy’s been found, it’s hard not to see the entire incident as an elaborate, J Walter Weatherman-esque game of lesson teaching between the boy and his parents.
Yamato was throwing rocks at vehicles and people when his parents decided to leave him on a mountain roadside to teach him a lesson. When they went back for him shortly afterwards, the boy had already vanished.
Leaving a seven-year-old alone with no food or water in a forest known for its bears sounds like an insane thing to do, but really, which parent hasn’t played the “I’m going to leave without you!” card on a misbehaving child?
Clearly, the boy called their bluff, disappearing into the woods for a week and giving his parents — and the world — quite a scare.
Before Yamato was found, his father expressed deep regrets over his actions: “We have done an unforgivable thing to our child, and we have caused a lot of trouble for everyone. I just hope he is safe.”
It looks like this story has a happy ending, and somebody has learned a lesson.
We’re just not sure who.
Have you ever tried to teach your kids a lesson that backfired? Share your story in the comments below!