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  • 2016.01.29 Friday
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GLOVER GARDEN, NAGASAKI

Follow me! I will show you 'Glover Garden' and its history..
     

   
                             A statue of Thoomas B. Glover

Thomas B. Glover Residence is Japan's oldest wooden Western-style residence. Through his trading businesses, Glover contributed much to Japan's modernization. The gardens, in addition to revealing the living circumstances of Nagasaki's foreign residents during what is known as "the period of foreign settlement," also display an abundance of fascinating natural beauty.

   
              日本語はなぜか‘グラバー園’と言います。。

   
Glover Garden is situated on the southern slope of a mountain. Its excellent vantage point offers a superb and extensive view of Nagasaki Harbor.



   

         
                        beautiful flowers are in full bloom..wow!!

   
The gardens feature the former Glover Residence..Later on, six other Western-style residences from the Meiji era that had been built throughout the city were dismantled, moved, reconstructed and restored as important national cultural properties on this site of former foreign settlements. They joined the former Glover Residence, the former Ringer Residence, and the former Alt Residence on the site.

   
This excellent vantage point offers a superb and extensive view of Nagasaki Harbor.
   
  From Glover Garden, you could see the shipyard which belongs to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. 

   

      
                     So did you enjoy it? Come and visit Nagasaki

mny

NAGASAKI (PART II)

長崎の有名なオランダ坂です
     
                                 Dutch slope or Hollander slope.

Western merchants, most notably from the Netherlands, settled in this area in the second half of the 19th century.

今、ちょっと痩せたけど。。この写真デブッチョーですね!恥ずかしい!!
   

   
                                           View of Nagasaki

     

     
Many western style buildings could be found in Dutch Slope area as well as at Glover Garden. 

     
                              I love these old style buildings!!

     
            A hospital in Nagasaki   これは病院ですよ


   
          ちょっと偽物っぽいけど、一応載せておこう。。童話館です

Nagasaki is an attractively situated port city on the island of Kyushu. As one of Japan's closest port cities to the Asian mainland, Nagasaki has played a prominent role in foreign trade relations for many centuries and was the most important of only a very few ports open to restricted numbers of foreign traders during Japan's period of isolation.
 
We voted Nagasaki the favourite of all cities we have visited in Kyushu Island
.

mny
           

NAGASAKI (PART I)

最近気がついたのですが、九州旅行のハイライト、長崎の写真を載せるのが忘れていました!
6月に行ってきたけどずいぶん昔のような気がします

It seems an ages since we went to Kyushu..I just have time to arrange Nagasaki photos. Nagasaki is the best city during our trip..

Nagasaki, a city with different faces..
   
                                     眼鏡橋   spectacles bridge 

     
                                       Confucian Temple 孔子のお寺

                   
        A Shinto shrine on the way to Sakamoto Ryoma's memorial boots 

6月だったけど、あの時も暑かったなあ。。

          Nagasaki
              Excuse me, Mr. Ryoma Sakamoto, may I borrow your boots??

     
Dejima, a fan-shaped artificial island that used to be the Dutch trading port during 'Sakoku' (self-imposed isolation) of Japan in Edo Period.
 
      
                                        Welcome to Nagasaki!

     
                        出島 Dejima

      nagasaki part2
                      China Town 中華街

     
                Castella Cake, a favourite souvenir from Nagasaki

   
                                               An old Castella shop

     
What do you think this used to be?
Do you know what the oldest profession on earth is??
Well, it used to be a brothel long time ago..now a restaurant..
 

ここは何だったと思いますか?今は素敵なレストランなんだけど昔は売春宿だったようです。。

mny hour

LAFCADIO HEARN

Patrick Lafcadio Hearn (27 June 1850 - 26 September 1904), also known as Koizumi Yakumo (小泉八雲) after gaining Japanese citizenship, was an author, best known for his books about Japan. He is especially well-known for his collections of Japanese legends and ghost stories, such as Kwaidan: Storie and Studies of Strange Thing.
Lafcadio Hearn, aka Koizumi Yakumo

   
Lafcadio once lived here in Kumamoto..He had teaching position in Kumamoto but he spent most of his life in Japan in Matsue city.
          小泉八雲はしばらく熊本のこの家に住んでいたようです。

I think it must have been very hard for a foreigner to live in Japan in those days..Even in present Japan, if you don't make an effort, it will be difficult to live happily..because of the language barrier as well as the culture.

In my case, it is difficult to discuss whether I am happy here or not..I am happy to be able to speak Japanese and make lots of friends but I still seek for more understanding as it seems that I am the only one in the family who is making efforts...(sigh)

Peaceful life is not equal to happy life, unfortunately..

There are more people who are much more unfortunate..so I can't really complain huh?
 
Yup, my life is very peaceful..and maybe that's more than enough for now..

People, you've got a life..live it how you want it..and never regret it..

Today's theme music: It's My Life by Bon Jovi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dAWtcFV1HRI 


幸せに生きることは簡単ではないようです。。私は幸せよりも平和な人生を選びました。。選んだ道は大事に歩んでいかなければならない。。選んだ道を変えることはできないことないけど、できるだけ頑張ってこの道を進んで行こうと思っています。一生懸命にやってる分、エンジョイできる分を大切にするのは私の人生観です。。

今日はなんだか重い話ばかりだね!

人生はあなただけのものです。好きなように生きて!

mny

KUMAMOTO CASTLE

九州旅行はずっと昔のような感じだけど。。なかなか整理する時間がなくて。。

日本三名所の一つ:熊本城です。

Kumamoto Castle was constructed by the Kato Clan in 1607. Half a century later, it was handed over to the Hosokawa Clan, which ruled the surrounding fief from there for over 200 years until the end of the feudal age.

Unfortunately in 1877, Kumamoto Castle became the site of Japan's last civil war, when an army of former samurai under Saigo Takamori unsuccessfully rose against the new Meiji government. Large parts of the castle were destroyed in that civil war..

Such a pity!!

Most of the present castle buildings, including the large and small castle towers, are reconstructions, dating from the 1960s. The interior of the castle towers is a modern museum.     
    
                       Kumamoto, a vibrant and energetic city

    
               Ok, those who want to visit the castle, follow me
                                                 It's FREE!!!!

   
 Hmmm..it was a bit tiresome to climb these stone steps in such a strong heat..

    
        Did you notice that these 2 stone walls were built in different era?
                ここの石壁は違う時代に造られたようです。

     
    かなり戦争でやられたので残っている建物の大部分は1960年代に建てられました。

      この写真は戦争前の熊本城です。。
       This is an old photo of Kumamoto Castle before the civil war..

         

     
                  この部分だけはオリジナルです
                       Only this small dungeon is the original..
     


     

     
                                  Kumamoto castle in full view 

            kumamoto castle
                                  Kumamoto castle at night

日本のお城ってよく火事などでやられるんですね!木造だからかな。。ヨーロッパのお城は石で造られる場合が多いから大体残っているけど。。もったいないよね!三匹の子豚の話を思い出してしまいますね!

mny


ANCIENT SAMOURAI TOWN IN CHIRAN 知覧武家屋敷庭園

This area in central Chiran was called 'Satsuma's Kyoto' for its beautiful landscape similar to Kyoto.
 
Have a look at these old samurai residences believed to have been built around 260 years ago.. 

知覧は「薩摩の小京都」といわれ、生け垣と石垣が美しい武家屋敷が今も残っている所です。
他の地域の武家屋敷の石垣は野石乱積みが多いが知覧の石垣はきれいな切石整層積みが中心で石垣の上の見事な生け垣と共に清潔感あふれる風景をつくっています。

260年前に作られたみたいです。。でもまだきれいに残ってます。。


    


                 
The entrance is made in this fashion: you cannot see the inside directly because of the stone wall..It is said that this style of architecture is meant to prevent evil spirits from going (floating??)in..
 
     
 Even the drink vending machine is made to match with the environment..

武家屋敷の門を入るとすぐの所に庭園があるのが普通だったらしく、今も7つの庭園が昔ながらの姿で良く残っています。

    

    

    

    
                     きれいな田舎でしたよ!
                    I love the beautiful Japanese countryside..


     

      

      

                        知覧武家屋敷
                        A samourai armour in one of the old houses..

Kagoshima, where Chiran is located, was called the Satsuma Domain and was governed by Lord Shimazu (please refer to my article on the Shimazu  residence in Kagoshima) of the Satsuma Clan. Chiran was ruled by the head of the Chiran Shimazu Family(these samourai houses were created either during the reign of Shimazu Hisatatsu (1651-1719) or Shimazu Hisamine (1732-1772)). 

           chiran
                  I walked on the same path as the samourais..
             昔のサムライたちもここを歩きましたね。。

あいにくの雨でしたけど知覧武家屋敷はとてもよかったです。7つの屋敷を観光するチケットは¥500でしたよ!高くないでしょう?


THE SAD BUT REAL STORY OF CHIRAN 知覧

As promised earlier, I will tell you the story of a town called 'Chiran'..It is such a heart-breaking story..    
I, along with most people visiting the museum, was tearful during the whole visit of Chiran museum.. 

知覧の話を約束したので書きます。。日本人なら誰でも知ってますよね?
とても悲しい話です。。

誰が特攻隊を作ったのでしょう?普通の人なら考え付かないと思います。本当にheartlessで ruthlessで残酷な人だったと思います。。

その人たちを裁判にかけたいくらいです。。

特攻隊の話は、知らないの人の話だから、聞いて悲しいと感じて終わりですけど。。
でももし自分の友達、親戚、家族、それか自分の息子が特攻隊に入っていたら??

皆のミッションは:国のために死ぬ。

戦争に出る人は帰ってこれないかもしれないことを意識するのですが、特攻隊のみなさんは出発する前から戻ってこれないことを知っていました。

皆どんな気持ちだったでしょう?
考えると心が痛くなります。。

人の‘命’はあまり価値がなかったようです。。
    
A Japanese military plane used for movies on Chiran is on display in front of Chiran museum.

Suicide Attack Unit
In the final stage of World War II, the Japanese military composed the suicide attack unit called the "Special Attack Unit(called Tokkōtai in Japan)".This attack is the so-called 'kamikaze' or death attack ..The pilot dashes his plane holding the bomb against the enemy's naval fleet...
 
The army suicide attack's center was the Chiran base at Kagoshima. Sadly to say that the suicide attack's leading role was the boy pilot or the pilot of a student graduate who just finished training.. They died to protect their homeland.

                       Girls waved farewell to the Tokkotai troops..

After learning the story of Chiran, my heart ached.. I felt so sorry for those young people who acted bravely on their orders..The inhumane orders that shouldn't have been given..  

I would really like to know who had made up these barbarian attacks..The idea shouldn't have come from a sound mind..They should be punished for their most cruel idea..I felt really sorry for the Tokkotai and their family.. 

How would you feel to fly the plane out knowing that it would be the last time you could see daylight? The last time you could see your family?

Life was so meaningless during those days.. 

Let's pray and work closely together for a peaceful world..


THE REAL LAST SAMOURAI, SAIGO TAKAMORI

Saigo Takamori?
Who?

Well, even if you don't know him, you should have heard of the movie starring Tom Cruise and Ken Watanabe 'The Last Samourai'    

日本人なら誰でも西郷隆盛のことを知っていると思います。トムクルースの映画‘THE LAST SAMOURAI'もこの方の人生をベースにして作られたんですよね。。 

        
'Katsumoto', the rebel samourai in the movie was a charactor inspired by  Saigo Takamori, the real LAST SAMOURAI..
            
                     映画では‘勝本’というのです。






The last samourai, Katsumoto was played by Ken Watanabe, based on this person: Saigo Takamori.
     
Maybe Ken Watanabe looks more handsome..but this is indeed a real great man..

The Japanese rebel and statesman Takamori Saigo (1827-1877) was the military leader of the Meiji restoration. His eventual revolt against the Meiji government in 1877 represented the resistance of the old warrior class to the swift and often ruthless policy of Westernization of Japan.

Takamori Saigo was born the eldest son of a lower-ranking samurai family on Feb. 7, 1827, in Kagoshima, the castle town of the Satsuma domain.  A huge man, physically powerful with a dark penetrating gaze and a commanding presence, he attracted the attention of the lord of the domain, Lord Nariakira Shimazu, who agreed with his views that major domestic reforms were necessary to meet the challenge of the West. He acted as courier and confidant to Nariakira until the latter's death in 1858.

After an abortive attempt at suicide in 1858, Saigo remained in retirement until 1864, when he reemerged as a military leader in the domain. He led Satsuma troops in skirmishes with Choshu forces at Kyoto in 1864 and later in the shogunate's expedition against Choshu. Gradually, however, he became convinced that it was in the interest of both his domain and the country that Satsuma act in concert with Choshu to bring an end to continued domination of the country by the Shogun. In 1868 Saigo served as field commander of the imperial forces in campaigns against the military resistance of the shogunate. As a result of this experience, he won a reputation as a great military hero and the universal respect of the samurai who served under him.

Discontent with Meiji

Once the Meiji restoration was accomplished, Saigo found himself in growing disagreement with the leaders of the new imperial government. Although he was appointed minister of war in 1871 and became a field marshal and court councilor in 1872, he opposed the growing centralization of the government, the trimming of the legal and social privileges of the samurai class, and the rapid pace of Westernization. In 1873 he finally broke with the government when some of its members, who had returned from an extended trip to Europe, rejected his plan for an invasion of Korea to provide military glory for former samurai and to enhance Japan's international position.

Saigo returned to his native province, where there was much samurai discontentment with the abolition of their privileges and the shift of power from the feudal domains to the central government. Saigo seems to have remained politically inactive and even resisted pressure by discontented elements in other domains to revolt. But in 1877, when an army of former Satsuma samurai rebelled against the central government's attempts to end Satsuma's semi-autonomous administrative status, he agreed to lead them. On Sept. 24, 1877, he took his life in traditional samurai fashion during the final battle with government troops, which ended the rebellion.

(source: biography of Saigo Takamori)
     saigotakamori
               I visited Saigo Takamori's hideout in Kagoshima city..

鹿児島を訪ねると、西郷隆盛の名前を何回も何回も耳にしますよね。。今回の九州旅行のおかげで日本の歴史をたくさん勉強することができました。すごく感動しました。。

タイでは‘いい人はすぐ死ぬ’というけど、まさにそうだと思います。。

mny hour


SAKURAJIMA, the (very) active volcano near Kagishima 桜島

We walked up the hill to catch this breath-taking view of Sakurajima..
桜島のこの風景を見るために結構山道を歩きました。。暑かったよ!
     桜島
                                       Wow! So beautiful...
                                        わー!きれいでしょう?

5分ほどあの周辺の写真を撮ってまた桜島の写真を撮ろうとしたら。。。
We were busy taking other photos..5 minutes later when we looked Sakurajima way..

        
Yup, it could explode any minutes..people in the area suffer from volcanic ash..not only for health concerns but they also need to clean the ash every other day.. Imagine the laundry covered with ash huh?

桜島は活火山なのでいつ噴火するのかわかりませんよね!すぐに煙が出てくるみたいで、この辺の人は火山灰の掃除などで大変みたいですよ!

皆、お洗濯や布団干しはどうしているんだろう??困るね!

mny hour

KAGOSHIMA CITY 鹿児島市

Welcome to Kagoshima! The gateway city to Japan (long long ago..)
ちょっと鹿児島の歴史についても書こうかな。。外国の人(私を含む。。)は日本の歴史がよく知らないので英語で書きますね

In the late pre-modern period, around the mid-19th century, Kagoshima imported spinning machines from England and established the first Western-style spinning mill in Japan. Thus,the shores of this area became the source of modern civilization in our country. Moreover, at the dawn of Japan's modern age, it was Kagoshima that produced the major heroes of the Meiji Restoration, in such stalwart figures as Saigo Takamori, Okubo Toshimichi and many other talented individuals.

    
                                鹿児島市           Kagoshima City

Tsurumaru Castle Once the castle of the Shimazu clan who govern the Satsuma domain till the Meiji restauration. It was destroyed during the Seinan war. 
     
    Here is the only parts left from Tsurumaru Castle: the wall and the moat..
               鶴丸城。。跡しか残っていませんでした。。


Terukuni Shrine,dedicated to Lord Nariakira Shimazu
    
                           照国神社

                   
         Lord Nariakira Shimazu, who established the foundation for
                                          the Meiji Restoration 
                                                       島津斉彬
The progressive leader Lord Nariakira Shimazu trained the geniuses and talented youths of the restoration period.

     
                           Old wooden structure next to the shrine 

Kagoshima also served as an essential gateway the reception of continental and western European culture. As early as the mid-16th century, Francisco Xavier arrived here to become the first person to introduce Christianity to Japan.


                   kagoshima
             キリスト教は鹿児島から入ってきたのですね。。
    
調べれば調べるほど面白そうな情報がたくさん出てきました。ただし、日本語ばかりで私には難しいかな。。特に人の名前が」読めないのが現実です。。日本語は大変ですね!

マスターするには無理だなあ。。

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