петак, 5. новембар 2010.

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ Kyushu trip - Day nine ★ Nagasaki (second day)

Second day in Nagasaki I spent learning more about Sakamoto Ryoma and atomic bombing of the city. In the morning I met with my two guides and went climbing that hill where Sakamoto Ryoma had his trading company.

I had most wonderful guides. The man knows well not just history of Nagasaki, but also some details which were quite amazing. I guess he found out about some things talking with old people from Nagasaki.

This side of Nagasaki was relatively alright after bombing, but over that hill was the place where A bomb exploded 500 meters above the ground and destroyed and burned everything.

In the center of the photo there is a big statue. On that place there used to be a temple, I believe it was a Chinese one, but it was destroyed by the A bomb.
Beautiful small streets of Nagasaki made me fell in love with the city.

One of the problems of Nagasaki city today is abandoned houses on the hills. More and more old people are leaving their houses to live in the buildings with elevators, where they don't have to climb so many stairs and go up the steep hills and streets.

Sakamoto Ryoma, looking over the city and the Nagasaki harbor.

竜馬は胸のおどるような思いをおさえかね、. 「長崎はわしの希望じゃ」と、陸奥陽之助にいった。 「やがては日本回天の足場になる」ともいった。 ~司馬遼太郎「龍馬がゆく」より

Nagasaki's harbor

And, of course, children came! :) There were so many of them. I was taking photos and could not take a smile off of my face so one of the boys asked me confused why was I smiling. :))

Ryoma street

Ryoma's trading company played an important part in Nagasaki's history.

Little garden inside.

We met those children again. This time they were forming the line for something. Wasn't really sure for what, but I could see their teachers holding a child by child so that they could stand in the huge pair of boots.

Here they are making there noses too look like little pigs. It was too cute, I couldn't stop laughing!

City has also many beautiful bridges.

In the afternoon I went to the part of the city where everything was destroyed by the A bomb. Now there is a big park called Peace Park, a museum and a memorial hall for the victims of the A bomb.

One out of many monuments in the park.

Main statue of Peace park. It was erected in 1955 by the citizens of Nagasaki. It stands as an appeal for lasting world peace and a prayer that such a tragedy would never be repeated. Explanation of the statue on the table in the park is as follows.
"The elevated right hand points to the threat of nuclear weapons, while the outstretched left hand symbolizes tranquility and world peace. Divine omnipotence and love are embodied in the sturdy physique and gentle countenance of the statue, and a prayer for the repose of the souls of all war victims is expressed in the closed eyes. Furthermore, the folded right leg symbolizes quiet meditation, while the left leg is poised for action in assisting humanity."

This is the map of Nagasaki. City has this strange shape because of the surrounding hills. On the map we can see the hypocenter of the explosion.

Following is written on the plaque near by.
"At 11:02 A.M., August 9, 1945 an atomic bomb exploded 500 meters above this spot. The black stone monolith marks the hypocenter.
The fierce blast wind, heat rays reaching several thousand degrees and deadly radiation generated by the explosion crushed, burned, and killed everything in sight and reduced this entire area to a barren field of rubble.
About one-third of Nagasaki City was destroyed and 150,000 people killed or injured and it was said at the time that this area would be devoid of vegetation for 75 years. Now, the hypocenter remains as an international peace park and a symbol of the aspiration for world harmony."

Urakami Cathedral Wall Remnant
"Urakami Cathedral was located on a small hill about 500 meters northeast of the atomic bomb hypocenter. Construction of the church was started in 1895 and completed in 1914 through donations and voluntary labor service by Catholic believers. In 1925, the bell towers at the church entrance also reached completion.
The explosion of the atomic bomb at 11:02 a.m., 9 August 1945 destroyed Urakami Cathedral, the grandest church in east Asia at the time. Only the broken church wall remained. A portion of the southern wall was brought here to make new way for the construction of the new church building in 1958. The stone statues on the column depict Christ and of his apostles. Since the wall was weakened over time by exposure to the elements, the interior and surface of the wall were reinforced for the safety."

Another monument that expresses the horror of the atomic bombing and also prays for the repose of the souls of the victims from whose noble sacrifice the buds of peace grew.

I believe these are peace cranes. A prayer for the victims and lasting world peace.
When I read the explanation of this monument I was in tears. Two young girls suffered the wounds after the explosion. People put them laying next to each other before burning their bodies. They dressed them in the most beautiful kimonos and put make up on their face, so that in death for the first time they wore make up. Mother of one of this girls together with the people of Nagasaki erected this monument. Mother died in 2009, she was 107 years old.
Name of the monument is "Children Trusting in the Future".
"Erected in tribute to the young people of Asia who suffered in the fires of war while trusting in the future... Represents two girls who disappeared into the sky over Nagasaki praying for a peaceful world free of nuclear weapons."

The Remembrance Hall inside the Nagasaki National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims. This is an underground building with a big pool of water directly above this hall.
"There are twelve illuminated glass pillars in the Remembrance Hall, along with a registry shelf at the far end which holds the names of all the victims of the atomic bombing. The upper sections of these pillars form the outside walls of a sky light, the center portion of which may be opened. the pillars are positioned so that they form a line which points toward the place where atomic bomb exploded. Their illuminated forms symbolize calls for peace going out to the skies of the world.

Registry Shelf for the Names of Atomic Bombing Victims
(Height: 9meters; No. of shelves: 27; Capacity of each shelf: 9 volumes)
The names of the atomic bomb victims are kept here. In front of the shelf is a low table where people may lay flower arrangements or paper cranes in tribute to those who passed away. The outer structure is made of glass and the steel-framed inner shelves open semi-automatically. The registry volumes are stored in boxes which maintain their pristine condition by keeping out ultraviolet light and moisture.
Number of atomic bomb victims registered by Nagasaki City (as of August 9, 2010): 152,276 (recorded in 153 volumes)

Beautiful Nagasaki City has a very sad dark past, but when I look at it today I can hear the children laughing, which is , if I may say, the most important thing for people who lived through the horrors of atomic bombing.

Although it was very emotional that second day, in the end I went out with my new friends to try Nagasaki's Champon, which was quite delicious!

I had the most joyful time with this people who are kind and optimistic. Thank you for the wonderful time and thank you for sharing with me your thoughts ;) I hope everything will work out fine for you dear A.! :)))

I traveled around Kyushu for nine days. It was at the same time nine very short and extremely long days. Everything was so to the extremes. Even though I spent a lot of money, twice as more as I expected to spend, I don;t regret a single bit. Because I learned a lot from the people I met and places I've been to. I wish I can go there some time soon, especially to Nagasaki, because I fell in love with this city. Untill the time we meet again farewell, and take care!

A sad adio! :)