Leaving from Kyoto; a seemingly vibrant hallmark of past great works and history, to the seeming faraway and terribly juxtapositioned Hiroshima with its great destruction and sad history, took a mere 2 and a half hours by Japans now famous Shinkansen rail network. It was a subtle feeling of deflation that both my travelling companion and myself carried when leaving. This feeling was attributed to a notion of an apparent lack of vibrancy and activities we presumed were on offer; almost feeling obliged to go, merely to see what became of the city, now so well etched into the pages of our history books.
Ektar 100 Mamiya 645super below
How wrong a view that was!
Im now happy to say its a vibrant, modern, well catered city, once hitting the eateries and local drinking holes, it becomes a welcoming place, and every night was a night that i saw locals hold their head high due to the-then recent win of their local baseball team: The Hiroshima Carps. The Japanese are crazy for it, and take any chance to celebrate. To give an example, in no place within the district were any caps available as they were all sold out, even as far afield as dedicated baseball stores within Tokyo itself.
Make Hiroshima a stop on your Japanese travels
We soon got settled, and set on a whimsical ride following our noses to get some well needed food, beverages, and plan the next days trip to Miyajima shrine, located on Itsukushima Island. This was done by city bicycles; ill suited for our faraway destination requiring larger framed bikes with better gearing. Think 2 and a bit hours on a low slung bike on the foot path, makes walking the trip a more appealing option. In saying that, painfull knees aside, the bicycle ride was a more organic way to experience the district, its coastal proximity, and the lay of the land than the train could ever be. Food for thought!
Agfa 400 push 800 Nikon FM3A below
Travel to the island is by a quick ferry on regular rotations.
Once near the island the floating Torii gate of Miyajima can be seen, though currently under repair (2016)
Right behind the Torii can be seen Itsukushima shrine, effectively a shrine suspended above water much like a pier, these can be seen below.
A short walk past the village surrounding the complex, is the Daisho-in temple complex, complete with cloth woven Buddah statuettes in different guises.
The trusty Agfa did the heavy lifting on the last leg, though it does have its limitations, namely colour cast when pushed if overcast conditions, negligable performance in the darker areas, and not quite as sharp the the higher shelf films. Flipside is low-cost, and it gave me 38 usable shots out of the roll. Kodak has never been that generous in my experience.
Ektar mamiya 645 super
As im writing this, by chance an album i casually found; really conveys the chillout vibe of these few days spent there: https://goo.gl/XjV7ko