Japan Journal #4: The Many Sides of Hiroshima

(By Edward)

After alighting briefly at our hotel, we took a quick street car followed by an also-quick walk to Hiroshima Castle, a faithfully restored structure surrounded by gorgeous cherry blossoms and home to a multi-level museum full of ancient works and an amazing view from the top level.

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Also home to one stubborn pigeon that appears in every angle but this one.

Just a few minutes walk away, you pass by the ED-ON towers – two neighboring 8-story buildings where you can buy just about every type of cell phone, hair curler, digital toy or electrical appliance ever conceived, and… it’s right there. The A-Bomb Dome, so named since it remained standing and even retained the distinctive dome despite having been almost directly below the bomb.

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I really didn’t think you’d be able to get this close to it.

People stop to take photos or just stare, but it’s just part of life for the locals – framed by a river and a moving peace memorial on one side and metropolitan bustle on the others. Case in point, just a side-street away is a 6-level ascent into madness of claw machines, animated gambling systems, cosplay photo booths and just about every other entertainment contrivance you could imagine.

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Sadly, Rockruff would not get in the Pokeball…

And that’s just on the fringes of Hon Dori, a winding multi-street covered arcade of high-end shoes, trendy coffee shops, eclectic restaurants and all manner of other storefronts.

Hiroshima, then, is a lot like Japan and in fact humanity – resilient, many-faceted, and home to far more complexities than you could take in over the course of a single afternoon – which, sadly, is all the time we have here.

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