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Life in Auckland

土曜日, 8月 07, 2004

the midday shinkansen to Hiroshima

I caught the shinkansen down to Hiroshima on Thursday and it was a really really fast train; at first almost nauseatingly so. My first encounter with a Japanese style toilet was also on the train, which added an element of daring adventure to the experience.

I also had ekibento, on the train, and for some reason I've decided to include a picture of it.

Hiroshima is a decent city, even considering the difficulty I've had finding resources for foreigners. Mamiko has done a great job of showing me around and has shown an incredible amount of patience. When went to the Peace Memorial yesterday, which I'll write a little more about tonight, for the 59th Anniversary of the bombing. When Japanese people ask me what I thought of the memorial and the day the only thing I can say to express myself is "kanashiin desu yo" which just means, "it was sad."

Later we went to the floating lanterns, every year on this day the people of Hiroshima float lanterns down the river in rememberance. It was really interesting watching the preperations, the gentle placing of the lanterns in the water followed by a prayer

the river slowing filling with lanterns

but of course the real treat was coming back later that night and seeing the river filled with glowing colors.

that night we went and ate okonomiyaki, which Hiroshima is famous for. There's kind of a okonomiyaki district with three buildings right next to each other that are full of little okonomiyaki shops like this:

each of them competing with eachother. The vege-noodle pancakes are cooked right in front of you while you speak with the chef and waitress. It was delicious.

Oh, and here's a picture of Mamiko pretending to be a cat.

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