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THE SPRING ISSUE 2015

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Enjoy the best al fresco dining experience in the city, on the Motoyasu riverside, opposite Peace Memorial Park. High quality Italian cuisine made with locally sourced produce. Sample Hiroshima's delicious oysters. Breakfast, lunches, coffee, cocktails and fine dining. Refresh yourself with a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. Why not enjoy one of our 10 kinds of delicious gelato by the river?

Weekdays 10:00-22:00 Weekends and holidays 08:00-22:00

A-BOMB DOME

PEACE PARK

su Motoya Bridge

Open from 07:30 every day in August 1-9-21 Ote-machi, Naka-ku

Hondor

i

082-247-7471 www.caffeponte.com


WELCOME As the world’s media prepares for the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the A-bombing this summer, the people of Hiroshima are looking forward to spring.

世界各国のメディアが、原爆投下70周年を迎える夏の記念 式典に向けて準備を進めている中、広島の人々は春が来るの を楽しみにしています。

私にとっては、春が、新しい年が始まる本当のスタートです。

Spring, to me, is always the real start to the new year. The chances of sticking to optimistic resolutions certainly seem to improve along with the weather. Plums blossoms give way to peach and everyone gets giddy during cherry blossom season. Parents breathe sighs of relief as fresh faces in new uniforms, head down pink-lined streets to take up hard-won positions at workplaces and schools.

明るい目標に向かう心持ちも、暖かくなるにつれて前向きに なるようです。梅の花は桃にその場を譲り、そして桜の時期 には人々はみんな浮ついてしまいます。親たちは、頑張って 学校や仕事を掴んだ我が子が、新しい制服に身を包みピン クに染まった道を歩いていくのを見て、安心のため息をつく ことでしょう。

今号では、広島のベスト花見スポットを紹介しています。岩国 の錦帯橋も必見です。そして江田島へのサイクルトリップや、

Inside, you’ll find a guide to the city’s best hanami picnic spots, as well as to the must see Kintai-kyo Bridge in nearby Iwakuni. Take a trip out to Etajima Island for a spin on your bike, or into the mountains to try fly-fishing or see kagura dance in its heartland and you’ll find many more opportunities for impromptu hanami.

山でフライフィッシングに挑戦したり、市内中心部で神楽を見 てはいかがでしょう。それらの様々な場所で、即席のお花見も 楽しめるはずです。

花が散った後は、綺麗な空に映える新緑も素敵です。広島の 川辺や海辺でアウトドアを楽しむ一番いい季節で、春の間、ピ クニックやバーベキューが続きます。そして、各地でたくさんの お祭りも開催されます。けれども、この春、広島で一番のお祭

Once the blossoms fall, the shin-ryoku new green leaves on a clear day are also lovely. Picnics and BBQs continue throughout spring as its the best time to enjoy Hiroshima’s riversides, waterfront and to hang out outdoors. There are also many festivals, but there’s a good chance that the most festive atmosphere you’ll find in Hiroshima this spring is at Mazda Stadium. The whole city seems absolutely convinced that the local baseball team, the Carp, can go all the way to win their first Japan Series championship since 1984. Paul Walsh

り騒ぎとなると、マツダスタジアムでしょう。今年は、地元の野 球チームカープが1984年以来初めて日本シリーズで優勝す ると、街全体が確信しているようなのです。 ポール ウォルシュ

GetHiroshima Mag Issue 5 March 2, 2015 Circulation 5,000 copies Published quarterly by GEC Next issue June, 2015 Printed by Hiroshima Chuo Printing Co., Ltd. Motoaki Tahara Editor-in-chief Paul Walsh Design team NININBAORI http://nininbaori.co.jp/ Art Direction: Judith Cotelle Katsuyoshi Kunimasa Norimitsu Maki Ryouta Kumagai Illustration Naomi Leeman http://www.naomileeman.com/ Sales, PR and marketing GEC World/GetHiroshima Yuko Asada Contributors Tim Buthod Judith Cotelle www.jud-hiroshima.com Izumi Goto Rachel Kirby Naomi Leeman http://www.naomileeman.com/ Matt Mangham Alex Rey Charlie Rose http://charlieroselovelove.com/ JJ Walsh Photography Judith Cotelle www.jud-hiroshima.com Jumpei Ishida Mish Vampiro Photography http://www.mishvampiro.com JJ Walsh Special thanks to Jah93 and our generous sponsors. Find us online

www.gethiroshima.com Cover: Kumi Yasuda a.k.a. Jah93 - p.48 Photo: Jumpei Ishida Thanks to Kugrass cafe & shisha

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All rights reserved © GetHiroshima 2015 As far as we are aware, all info correct at time of going to print. If you see something that has changed, we’d really appreciate you letting us know at info@gethiroshima.com Warning/Disclaimer GetHiroshima and GEC World will not accept liability for any damages caused by the contents of GetHiroshima Mag, including, but not limited to any omissions, errors, facts or false statements. Opinions or advice expressed in GetHiroshima Mag are not necessarily those of GetHiroshima or GEC World. No content published in Get Hiroshima can be reproduced, republished, retransmitted or redistributed without permission.

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/03


45 bis awa | quarante-cinq bis awa | Everyone is welcome at this roadside standing “bubble bar” and grill. Enjoy Champagne, wine, beer, etc with some char-grilled dishes, hot off the flames. The charcoal grill brings out the full flavor of our high quality ingredients. Prices are so reasonable you could pop in every day.

menu includes

Charcoal Grill Yakitori Tapas

¥190 + tax~ ¥480 + tax~ ¥300 + tax~

address

1-18, Fukuro machi, Naka ku, Hiroshima tel

082.545.0450 business hour

17:00-23:30

45 | quarante-cinq | A bistro in the heart of the city, 45 has a great selection of wine, including many varieties of Natural Wine or Vin Naturel, known as “Bio Wine” in Japan. Pair a glass or two with dishes from our wide selection of foods on the menu. Why not treat yourself to homemade Italian salsiccia sausages, Hiroshima oysters or some of our many dishes featuring locally grown vegetables. Popular dishes

Salad Niçoise Homemade Italian sausage (pork, lamb, beef) Duck confit with potatoes

address

1-18, Fukuro machi, Naka ku, Hiroshima tel

082.545.1225 business hour

11:30-23:30

NINNIKUYA MANAO | ninnikuya manao | A real taste of Thailand prepared with authentic Thai ingredients and cooking methods. our Thai chef has worked in the kitchens of some of Bangkok’s most popular restaurants and prides himself in his use of super fresh herbs to create perennial Thai favorites like green papaya salad, tom yum soup, fresh spring rolls and massaman curry. Real Thai flavors right here in Hiroshima! menu includes

Green papaya salad Tom yum soup Gai yaang Vietnamese spring roll Green curry

¥1,080 + tax ¥1,480 + tax ¥880 + tax ¥380 + tax ¥880 + tax

address

Tatemachi build. 2F, 6-11, Tatemachi, Naka ku, Hiroshima tel

082.240.0229 business hour

11:30-14:00 / 17:30-23:00

¥680 + tax ¥500 + tax ¥1,800 + tax


CONTENTS 03. 06. 07. 08. 09. 10. 13. 18. 19.

Welcome must see gethiroshima picks news Shopping Spring Festivals kagura Okonomiyaki Hiroshima Carp and Sanfrecce kids Events art Sponsors

34. 36. 38. 39. 50. Matt’s Moment

Features 14. Hanami in Hiroshima

Everyone’s favorite time of year. Your guide to enjoying the cherry blossom in Hiroshima.

16. kintai-kyo Bridge & kikko Park

Voted favorite cherry blossom spot by GH readers last year, Naomi Leeman introduces Iwakuni’s top attraction in graphic detail.

31. Hiroshima Al Fresco

There’s no better way to enjoy the “city of water” at this time of year than at a table under the sun or the stars.

32. Cycling Etajima

No need to hassle with the train. Etajima’s quiet roads and Inland Sea vistas are only 30 minutes away by ferry.

35. J-Fly Trout Fishing Head to the hills for a quiet day of fly fishing.

23. 8 page pullout city guide maps and languag e

44. Goto Izumi’s Deep Hiroshima: Osuga

Vestiges of post-war Japan and a lively bohemian scene are found in the small maze of streets that go by the name of Osuga, if you know where to look.

46. Priests, dubplates and daredevils:

Hiroshima’s reggae scene

Judith Cotelle speaks with the pioneers of Hiroshima’s passionate reggae scene.

49. Yakitori

Two great recommendations to get your foot in the door of the charcoal grilled world of yakitori.

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/05


Beaten tracks

MUST SEE

SHUKKEI-EN GARDEN A delightfully compact reconstruction of a “circular tour style garden” designed by warrior tea master Soko Ueda in 1620. The central lake is populated by koi, turtles and heron. Explore the narrow paths. See P.12 for regular cultural events held here.

PEACE MEMORIAL PARK AND MUSEUM Most visitors are here to learn about the A-bombing, and the Peace Memorial Park and Museum is the place to do that. The museum certainly isn’t fun, but you should set aside at least an hour to make your way through the exhibits, plus some time to process the experience. You will find hope as well as tragedy here. Hiroshima endured the unendurable and has rebounded. The museum not only documents and preserves the memory of the event and those it affected, but also appeals for the abolition of nuclear weapons. Hiroshima’s commitment to spreading that message is evident in the nominal ¥50 admission fee.

A sudden return to the hustle and bustle of the city center can jar the senses and the grounds of the Peace Park provide a buffer, emotional as well as spacial. Here, you can sit quietly beneath trees that defied fears that “nothing would grow for 75 years”. Nervous school children approach to ask questions in halting English. The contrast of their smiling, happy faces with what you have seen in the museum lifts your heart.

MIYAJIMA The island of Itsukushima - known as Miyajima - is quite simply, divine. Its very trees, rocks and sands deemed sacred from times of myth and legend, Itsukushima Shrine was built over the water in the 12th century so as not to impinge on the island’s sacred soil. All Shinto shrines have a torii gate through which the gods housed within are to be approached. The gate to Itsukushima is an iconic image that has adorned the front of many a guidebook since being designated as one of the nihon sankei, “three great scenic views of Japan”. “Great view” status brings great crowds. However, most visitors stick to the area between the ferry terminal and Itsukushima Shrine. Try to catch the great torii gate in both its “floating” state at high tide and at low tide when you can walk out and marvel at its bulk. Then, head off and explore Miyajima’s side streets and park trails. Visit the One Thousand Mat Senjokaku Pavillion and Daishoin Temple. The view from the top of mythical Mt Misen is impressive, as are the huge boulders on the summit. Late afternoon, Miyajima’s crowds melt away and, just before sunset, lanterns light up and Itsukushima Shrine and the torii gate are illuminated. The atmosphere is quite special.

HIROSHIMA CASTLE “Carp Castle” is a 1958 reconstruction of the original Edo-era castle built by Terumoto Mori in the late 16th century. It houses a mildly interesting museum and has a viewing platform. Despite its pleasant grounds, visitors who have come from Himeji may not be too impressed.

Go Deeper Hiroshima Optional Tours offer private tours by friendly and knowledgeable licensed guides. For more details of these and other tours check out HiroshimaTours.info [en]

Only have one day in Hiroshima? We feel sorry for you as you are going to miss so much! However, if it can’t be helped, here’s one way to “do” Hiroshima in just 12 hours or so. It’s pretty full on and you’ll probably be exhausted when you sink into your train seat to head back to your digs. Sure you don’t want to stay the night?

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tcar Stree Station Walk

Shukkei-en

Stree t

car

• Flex Hotel • Kyobashi • Riverside cafes Riverside Breakfast

• Nagataya • Caffe Ponte • Kanawa Oyster Boat

car

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Peace Park

Lunch at Peace Park

Boat to Miyajima

12 hour model course


GetHiroshima picks

KAGURA Ancient myths and folktales performed in extravagant costumes to frenetic drum rhythms. Kagura evolved from sacred dances performed by priests into a folk art that involves whole communities, and is currently undergoing something of a renaissance. See Page 13 for more details.

Futabayama hike

Photos © JudHiroshima Futabayama view

MITAKI TEMPLE Beautiful and atmospheric at any time of the year. Whether you consider yourself spiritual or not, the dense greenery and flowing water will calm the most harried traveler. Highly recommended, even for those suffering from Kyoto “temple fatigue”. Mitaki Station is 10min by train from Hiroshima on the Kabe Line, from where it is a 20 minute walk up the hill. Gate closes at 5pm.

Shimizu Gekijo Taishu Engeki is theater for the masses, Japanese vaudeville performed by itinerant theater troupes for very loyal fans. Distinctly downtown in atmosphere, it really is another world that few outsiders ever see. 3 hour performances start at 12pm & 6pm daily for ¥1900. Or just catch the final hour’s “Grand Show” for a bargain ¥1000. Find out more at http://bit.ly/shimizugekijo

Peace Pagoda

PEACE PAGODA, FUTABA-YAMA As you come into Hiroshima Station on the shinkansen, you may notice the bulbous, silver Peace Pagoda on top of Mt Futaba. The walk up the mountain, starting at Toshogu Shrine and winding up through a forest under 100 or so red torii gates, is worth the effort and you are rewarded with a commanding view of the city and surrounding islands from the top.

• Torii Gate & Itsukushima Shrine • Daisho-in • Mt Misen • Snacking on Omotesando Shopping Street Miyajima

JR Train

Carp

Station

Dinner

SHIMIZU GEKIJO

THE CARP Baseball fan or not, a home game at Mazda Stadium is always a memorable experience. Read more about Hiroshima’s local heroes on Page 20. LAST TRAINS To Tokyo: NOZOMI: 19:58 / Non-NOZOMI: 18:56 To Osaka: NOZOMI: 22:13 / Non-NOZOMI: 21:58 To Fukuoka (Hakata): NOZOMI: 22:50 / Non-NOZOMI: 22:28 Train schedules do change so we highly recommend you double check the above information. • Kanawa • Roopali • Sarii-chan

OUT ON THE TOWN After learning about all that Hiroshima endured, it can be tempting to give in to the urge to hole up in your hotel. Resist that urge and get out into this fun city to eat, drink and, yes - make merry, with its people. Only then can you get a true and full appreciation of what a special place Hiroshima is. GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/07


NEWS MIYAJIMA AKARI ILLUMINATIONS

RUN MIYAJIMA Tokyu Hands Cafe WiFi and 4 big desktop Macs available to use for free on the 2nd Floor of the Tokyu Hands department store. More cafes, restaurants and bars Look for the Free WiFi logo on our maps and ads for places that invite you to log on to their WiFi with their password. Let us know how user friendly Hiroshima’s free WiFi services are or if you discover any other good ones yoursay@gethiroshima.com

YOKOGAWA CHARITY ART SHOW Miyajima after dark is one of Hiroshima’s best kept secrets. Once the crowds have gone, lights come on around Itsukushima Shrine and the giant torii gate and the atmosphere is quite special. From April 4 to May 31 more places, including the beautiful Daishoin Temple, will be illuminated until 10pm and some of the famously early-closing shops and restaurants will extend their opening hours. See GetHiroshima.com for more details.

NEW CITY RENTAL CYCLE SYSTEM

By the time this magazine is out, Docomo’s new Hiroshima City Rental Cycle system should be up and running. Power assisted shopping bikes will be available for rent between 08:30 and 21:00 from 14 cycle ports around the city. Of most interest to visitors from overseas is the one day rental option for ¥1080, payable in cash. It remains to be seen how non-Japanese reading friendly the system will be, but we would love to hear from you if you use the system yoursay@gethiroshima.com http://docomo-cycle.jp/hiroshima/ [ja]

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A new road race comes to Miyajima April 5, bang in the middle of cherry blossom season. The challenging 15km out-and-back course gives runners a chance to see a rarely visited side of Miyajima. There is also a 5km event. Entry deadline is March 15. http://island-marathon.com/miyajima-outline

GET ONLINE AND SURF FOR FREE! Hiroshima Free Wi-Fi Free online access provided by the local government in collaboration with local businesses at around 300 locations. Hotspots in the Peace Museum and the International Conference Center (also in the Peace Memorial Park) which has a lounge with many English publications to browse. Select SSID “Hiroshima_Free_Wi-Fi” Seattle’s Best Coffee Fuss-free access, a smoking section which can be a pleasure for some and pain for others, plus a couple of outdoor tables. Starbucks & Tully’s Coffee Email confirmation is required so you have to pre-register before you hit the coffee shop . Once signed up, you can surf at branches all over Japan. Go to http://starbucks.wi2.co.jp/ Select tullys_Wi-Fi

The first Yokogawa Charity Art Show was held after the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami disaster, and 5 years on it continues to raise money and awareness about the people in northern Japan still dealing with the aftermath of the disaster. Last year Hiroshima was hit by its own localised, but devastating, landslide disaster. International artists, resident in Hiroshima and beyond, donate work for sale and 100% of the proceeds go directly to people adversely impacted by these two disasters. See the website for more details and how to contribute. Why not check out the exhibition while taking in Yokogawa’s Fushigi Ichi street festival also held on April 26 (see page 36). Location: Seed Art Laboratory, Yokogawa Opening party Saturday April 25 18:00~ Exhibition Sunday April 26 10:00-16:00 www.yokogawa-art.org


SHOPPING

Charlie Rose loveloves Japan Style Words / Photos: Charlie Rose http://charlieroselovelove.com/

In Japan, people don’t miss a beat when it comes to dressing to impress. Whether it’s cycling to work, running errands, or just a quick run to the 7-11, men are dressed in colored denim, slacks, button down shirts, and dress shoes to match; women are sporting dresses, jumpers, skirts, and 6 inch heels.

As an Apparel Design and Merchandising Management graduate recently moved to Japan, the contrast with the everyday style of the average Joe and Jane back in America is strikingly different. Even on public transportation, you’ll find men fixing their carefully styled hair and posture, while women check and sometimes even re-apply makeup. You’ll rarely see anyone in Japan skipping out on the opportunity to ‘suit up’. No excuses in Japan. Minna san ganbarimashou! C’mon Everyone, let’s do our best to dress for success!

HIDDEN FASHION TREASURES OF HIROSHIMA On your next city shopping trip, skip H&M and go slightly more eco-friendly by heading over to Mizuhoya. A lovely second hand shop sporting funky, fresh, and strangely fun Japanese fashion styles. The owner always greets you with a joyful irasshaimase! (“welcome to our store!”) and a smile to match. Must haves and one of a kind clothing pieces with accessories to mix and match from Mizuhoya. Treasures like this are always in stock and just waiting to be claimed.

NEW A.P.C. STORE IN HIROSHIMA French ready-to-wear brand A.P.C. known for classic pieces with clean lines and top quality raw-denim selvage jeans comes to Hiroshima this spring. The Fukuromachi store opens its doors February 28 and is open 12-8pm. Mizuhoya: 11:00-19:00 Closed Wednesday & Thursday 2F 2-2 Fukuromachi, Naka-ku, Hiroshima-shi 082-247-3730 A.P.C. Hiroshima: 12:00-20:00 6-2 Fukuromachi, Naka-ku, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima Tel: 082-545-9822

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/09


Spring Festivals Hina doll displays, glorious cherry blossoms, festivalpacked Golden Week, Shinto and Buddhist rites, and the first fireworks of the year: Spring is a great time for festivals around Hiroshima, and, weather permitting, many wonderful days out are to be had.

Temperatures may still be low, but when “Girl’s Day” comes around on March 3, we know that the worst is behind us and spring is on its way. Beautiful dolls that feature in the generally private Hina-matsuri, are displayed publicly in historical towns throughout the month. A visit to Miyajima at this time of year may well coincide with rituals at either Itsukushima Shrine or Daishoin Temple. Less traditional, but hugely attended, is the three day Flower Festival; one of many events that vie for your attention during Golden Week.

KINTAIKYO BRIDGE FESTIVAL / 4/29 - IWAKUNI

The return from the capital Edo of the local lord and his retainers is re-enacted in an elaborate costume parade over Iwakuni’s impressive 5-arched Kintai Bridge. Samurai shooting display, lots of food stalls and a huge flea market make this festival a great way to kick off the Golden Week holidays.

FLOWER FESTIVAL / 5/3-5 - HIROSHIMA

Over a million people flood into Hiroshima for the Flower Festival when Peace Boulevard is taken over by parades, stalls and stages. Paradeless Day 2 feels least crowded, but the yosakoi dance parade on Day 3 provides great photo opportunities. Don’t miss the candle display in Peace Park after dark.

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KIYOMORI FESTIVAL / 3/20 - 12PM - MIYAJIMA

Miyajima pays tribute to the the 12th century samurai clan leader Taira no Kiyomori, the man responsible for Itsukushima Shrine’s stunning design. A Heian period costume parade makes its way from the ferry terminal, through Itsukushima Shrine, and ends at Kiyomori Shrine.

MITAMA FESTIVAL / 5/29-31 - GOKOKU-JINJA SHRINE

This 3-day festival for the souls of the war dead enshrined in Gokoku-jinja Shrine, was first held on 1975 on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Showa Emperor Hirohito’s reign. Saturday night is the highlight with dances featuring a hundred “shrine maidens” as well as Japanese taiko drumming and kagura.

BENTENJIMA FIREWORKS FESTIVAL / 5/30 18:40-20:30 - TOMO-NO-URA, FUKUYAMA

Summer comes early to Tomo-no-ura with the region’s first big fireworks display of the year. A visit to this medieval fishing port is highly recommended at any time of the year. The usually sleepy town is busier than usual, but it’s a beautiful show. (30 min by bus from Fukuyama JR Station ) GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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|| 2/21-3/22 Hina Doll Festival, Tomonoura

HINA DOLL FESTIVALS / TOMO-NO-URA, TAKEHARA, MIYAJIMA

|| 2/7-3/22 Hina Doll Festival, Takehara

March 3 is Hina Matsuri or “Girls’ Day” when households blessed with daughters put up elaborate displays of ornamental hina-ningyou dolls in medieval court dress. In early spring, Tomo-noura, Takehara and Miyajima display antique dolls to the public in historical buildings - a worthwhile addition to a visit to these fascinating places.

|| 3/21-4/5 Hina Doll Festival, Miyajima || 3/7-3/8 Hiroshima Port Festival, Ujina || 3/8 Hina-nagashi, Otake || 3/22 13:00 Kiyomori Festival, Miyajima || 3/22 Momo peach blossom tea ceremony, Shukkei-en Garden

© Ruma views

|| 4/5 Cherry blossom tea ceremony, Shukkei-en Garden || 3/24 to 4/3 Illuminated cherry blossom night viewing, Shukkei-en Garden

FIRE WALKING RITUAL / 4/15 - 11AM - DAISHO-IN TEMPLE, MIYAJIMA © Lance Cpl. Benjamin Pryer

|| 4/4-4/9, 4/12 Illuminated cherry blossom night viewing, Hiroshima City Botanical Gardens

Arrive ahead of time to ensure a good view of this Shingon Buddhist ritual at Daisho-in Temple on Miyajima. Sutras are chanted from 11am and crowds gather before 1pm for the ritual lighting of the pyre of cypress branches. Around 2pm the head monk and mountain priests, followed by members of the public, make the walk across the embers.

|| 4/15 11:00 Fire walking ritual, Daisho-in Temple, Miyajima || 4/15 17:00 Toukasai ceremony and medieval court dances, Itsukushima Shrine, Miyajima || 4/16-4/18 Noh Performances, Itsukushima Shrine, Miyajima || 4/29 Kintai Bridge Festival

DOWNTOWN SAKE FESTIVAL / MID MAY - ALICE GARDEN, HIROSHIMA

|| 4/29 Kure Port Festival, Kure || 5/3 Tea picking, Shukkei-en Garden

An excellent opportunity to try a wide range of Hiroshima’s top quality sake produced by its many small breweries. You can buy a strip of 5 tickets, but most people go for the all-you-can-try refillable sake cup (a nice little souvenir) and the atmosphere gets increasingly lively as the night goes on.

|| 5/2-3 Onomichi Port Festival || 5/3-4 Takehara Bamboo Festival, Takehara || 5/3-5 Hiroshima Flower Festival || 5/5 Baby crying sumo, Gokoku Shrine || 5/16-17 Fukuyama Rose Festival, Fukuyama || 5/16 Sanou Mountain King Festival, Onomichi || 5/18 17:00 Empress Suiko memorial ceremony and medieval court dances, Itsukushima Shrine, Miyajima

MIBU NO HANA TAUE RITUAL RICE PLANTING / 6/7 - KITA-HIROSHIMA

|| 5/29-31 Mitama Festival, Gokoku Shrine

This revived rice planting ritual, an hour by car north of central Hiroshima, is said to have roots in the middle ages. Colorfully decorated bulls and saotome (rice planting maidens) in kimono and wide-brimmed sugegasa hats plant rice seedlings in time with the music performed by drummers and flautists.

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|| 5/31 Children’s sumo, Gokoku Shrine || Late May Shobu “Sweet Flag”” Tea Ceremony, Shukkei-en Garden || 6/7 Mibu-no-hana-taue ritual rice planting, Kitahiroshima www.gethiroshima.com/events Kisa IC- Sera - Sera IC scheduled to open 22 Kisa IC IC scheduled to open MarchMarch 22

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|| 5/30 Benten-jima Island fireworks festival, Tomonoura

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Bihoku Hillside Park Minori-no-sato Daffodil Garden

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600 varieties, over a million blooms covering an entire hillside. It’s a must see!

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Bihoku Park Office: 4-10 Mikkaichi-cho Shobara City, Hiroshima Pref. 727-0021 Tel: 0824-72-7000 http://www.bihoku-park.go.jp

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Hiroshima Airport

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Access: 90 min from Hiroshima to Chugoku Expressway Shobara IC then 5 min to Park North 2015 2 Entrance or 10 min to Park Central Entrance. Kure Line

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kagura spectacular folk theater for the masses

A giant multicolored eight-headed serpent writhes back and forth across the stage, attacking and entwining a sword-wielding hero. Engulfed in smoke, sparks spitting from its multiple jaws, the beast bites, spins and leaps, occasionally snapping at young children brave enough to come to the front of the stage. The hero eventually triumphs, severing each of the heads in turn to the delight of the audience.

This is the thrilling conclusion to Yamata-noorochi, a crowd-pleasing tale from Japanese mythology, often performed as the finale at kagura festivals and competitions. Kagura is a diverse art form with a variety of performance styles. That performed in northern Hiroshima and Iwami in Shimane is characterized by energetic dances performed in elaborate (and heavy) costumes, accompanied by stirring rhythms. While you may not understand the

dialogue, exciting fight scenes, lots of dry ice, fireworks and lightning fast costume changes keep even the uninitiated entertained. In Hiroshima city, kagura is most often seen at autumn shrine festivals. During spring, however, you can catch performances on the main stage at the Flower Festival during Golden Week and every Wednesday at Kenmin Bunka Center near the A-bomb Dome. The Wednesday night shows cost only ¥1000 and feature 2 performances. Non-Japanese readers are provided with basic English outlines of the pieces to be performed and there’s an opportunity to check out the masks and costumes up close and get some great souvenir snaps after the show has finished. Those who would like to delve deeper into the world of kagura should make a trip out to Monzenmura Kagura Village in Midorii in Akitakata. Here, around 20 troupes take turns in performing in the “Kagura Dome” and the facility also has restaurants, shops, a hot spring and accommodation.

Hiroshima Kagura in the City Center Two Performances Every Wednesday March 18-December 23 at

~Hiroshima Prefectural Citizen’s Culture Center~ (Rijo Kaikan Kenmin Bunka Center) p.29 [B-1/2]

Admission: ¥1,000 (All seating is unassigned) Tickets sold on day of performance: from 17:00 Doors open: 18:00 First performance: 19:00 Intermission: 19:40-20:00 Second performance: 20:00

Photo session with players and costumes on stage after the show from 20:40

March 18 prog. 1: Tenson-Korin / prog. 2: Yamata no Orochi March 25 prog. 1: Tsuchigumo / prog. 2: Yamata no Orochi April 1 prog. 1: Momijigari / prog. 2: Yamata no Orochi April 8 prog. 1: Jinrin / prog. 2: Ooeyama April 15 prog. 1: Yamanba / prog. 2: Takiiyashahime April 22 prog. 1: Takiyashahime / prog. 2: Modoribashi (1st part) April 29 prog. 1: Akkotaiji / prog. 2: Yamata no Orochi May 6 prog. 1: Tsuchigumo / prog. 2: Takiiyashahime May 13 prog. 1: Modoribashi / prog. 2: Tsuchigumo May 20 prog. 1: Tenjin / prog. 2: Adachigahara GetHiroshima / Spring 2015 May 27 prog. 1: Jinrin / prog. 2: Yamata no Orochi

/13


Hanami

Hana no kage / aka no tanin wa / nakari keri Under the cherry-blossoms, None are utter strangers. - Issa

Everything seems better when the cherry blossoms are in bloom. The fleeting season signals the end of winter and is eagerly awaited. Even commuting to work becomes a pleasure along roads and riverside paths trimmed with pink. Just about everyone makes a point of making time for at least one hanami picnic under the trees, and in the more popular spots it’s hard not to make friends. Of course, cherry blossom viewing or hanami is all about meditating on the transience of life while admiring nature’s beauty, but the top spots can get crowded and, as the sake starts to flow, quite lively. If it is peace and quiet you seek, pack a lunch and claim one of the many riverside clumps of trees too small to be designated as a “spot”. Alternatively, head for the hills in search of wild yama-zakura.

HOW TO HANAMI Basho-tori People often claim the best spots early in the morning, and if you plan to hit a popular spot with more than a few people you might want to follow suit. Blue sheets are ubiquitous, but any sheet wrought in plastic works like it has a force field around it. Pro tip: Respect the sheet by removing your shoes. Be flexible The weather can be exceedingly fickle at this time of year, so if you find yourself in the cherry blossom zone on a gorgeous day, drop all your other plans and make that your hanami day. Layer up You can get some beautiful sunny days during hanami season, but it gets pretty chilly in the late afternoon and after dark.

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Treat yourself Convenience store bento lunches are all very well, but hanami is only once a year, so why not splash out on a nice “hanami bento” from a “depa-chika” in the basement of a department store or from local favorite Musashi? If you are still struggling to appreciate the Japanese bento, pick up a selection of bread, cheese, cold cuts and perhaps a nice bottle of wine. Sake Don’t waste your money on cheapo firewater. High quality local jizake brews are reasonably priced and will impress your neighbors. Trash bags One of the uglier sides of hanami season is the huge amount of trash that gets left behind in parks and on riversides. Don’t contribute to the problem.

mitaki temple

ryuo park

TRACK THE BLOSSOMS The “Cherry Blossom Front” makes its way up from Japan’s southern islands. Forecasts calculated according to the Arrhenius equation are watched carefully, particularly by companies that make and sell bento lunches, for whom the ideal (most profitable) season is one that peaks around the end of the first week of April, when everyone has settled into the new work and school year.

Opening: March 27 Full bloom: April 4 (Forecast at date of publication) http://sakura.weathermap.jp/ [ja]

eba yama park


TOP 5 CITY HANAMI SPOTS Peace Park

Shukkei-en Garden Hiroshima Castle

NIGHT SAKURA Hakushima Kuken-cho

Hijiyama Park

Shukkei-en Garden

HANAMI DAYTRIPS cherry blossom

Miyajima Best known for its autumn colors, there are also some lovely cherry blossom spots on the sacred island. Our top recommendations are often surprisingly peaceful. With a bit of luck you and the deer may have them to yourselves. • Yogai-zan Hill • Along Uguisu Nature Trail • Tahoto Pagoda overlooking Itsukushima Shrine • Omoto Park

Kintai-kyo Bridge in Iwakuni

ushita park night time hanami

oshiba park

supermarket

futabayama hakushima kuken-cho

chuo park

hiroshima castle

shukkeien garden

© Hiroaki Kaneko

MISSED THE CITY CENTER BLOSSOMS?

peace park

hijiyama park

Japan Mint (Itsukaichi)

Yogai-zan, Miyajima

Haji Dam (Yachiyo)

higashi senda park

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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Iwakuni’s Kintai Bridge is one of the most beautiful places in the Hiroshima area to enjoy the cherry blossoms and a hanami picnic with friends. Kikko Park surrounds the historic bridge and offers a host of fascinating sites to make the hour trip from Hiroshima well worth it.

Words/Illustration by Naomi Leeman (naomileeman.com)

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With its five graceful arches spanning the Nishiki River, it’s easy to see why the Kintai Bridge is a national treasure. A version of the wooden bridge has stood at the site since 1673, originally constructed without nails by carefully fitting the wooden parts together and using metal girders to cinch key parts together. Over the years the Kintai Bridge was damaged by typhoons several times, and the bridge you see today was reconstructed in 2004.

it was dismantled by decree of the new Tokugawa Shogunate. The current castle was reconstructed in 1962, just a short distance from the historic site, and you can still see the original stone foundation. You can take the ropeway up to the castle, or if you’d rather get a bit of a workout in, opt to take one of two hiking paths up to the castle. One trail starts behind the Iris Garden, and the other is a paved path up that starts behind the temples at the southwest corner of the park.

Head up Yoko Mountain (aka Shiro Mountain) to see one of Japan’s 100 great castles, Iwakuni Castle. It was originally built in 1608 by the prefectural Lord Kikkawa as his personal residence, but only 7 years after construction was completed,

Kikko Park boasts several museums showcasing cultural artifacts, Japanese art, and even a very unique animal. The Iwakuni Art Museum (¥800) houses a great display of traditional Japanese crafts and a large collection of authentic


samurai armor. For ¥100, you can peek in the White Snake Building to catch a glimpse of the rare albino snakes that are indigenous to the area. They are said to bring good luck if you find one in your home, although I don’t think I’d have the same reaction! Next door is the Mekata Residence, one of the few remaining original samurai homes in Japan. Although there’s no English, take a few minutes to stop in the Chokokan Museum (free) and walk around the grounds of the Kikkawa Museum (¥500 to enter a small exhibit area with no English) to see historic artifacts from everyday life in the Edo and Meiji periods. There are also several shrines and temples around Kikko Park to explore. Don’t miss the Kikko Shrine, it’s a designated National Cultural Property.

During peak sakura season, you can ride on a traditional fishing boat along the Nishiki River. Although you can only experience the unique cormorant fishing during the summer months, the old-world charm of the boats is well worth the price. If you miss the sakura, head down to Iwakuni for the annual Kintai Bridge Festival on April 29 to see traditional Edo period dances, taiko drum, and samurai performances. The iris gardens bloom from early to mid-June. Before you leave, grab an ice cream cone from one of the many shops in the park that offer over a hundred different flavors. Also try one of Iwakuni’s specialty foods, a layered sushi (Iwakuni-zushi) or a

deep-fried lotus root (renkon) that you can get from one of the vendors along the east side of the river. Getting to Iwakuni By JR train, it’s about 50 minutes from Hiroshima Station to Iwakuni Station, then a 20 minute bus ride from the station to the Kintai. By shinkansen train, it’s about 15 minutes from Hiroshima Station to Shin-Iwakuni Station, then a 10 minute taxi ride from the station. By bus, it’s about 50 minutes from Hiroshima Bus Center direct to Kintai Bridge.

For good reason, crowds converge on Kikko Park in late March to early April when the sakura are in full bloom. But there’s always room for one more hanami party, so bring your blanket and bento and enjoy a Japanese tradition!

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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You ha v en' t d o n e hir oshima if you ha v en't d o n e

Hiroshima Okonomiyaki! Okonomiyaki, a savory pancake cooked on an iron hotplate, containing egg, chopped vegetables, meat and/or seafood is found all over Japan. In Hiroshima, this dish is beefed up by adding noodles and lots of veggies. Rather than mixing all the ingredients together, as in the more common Kansai or Osaka style, here in Hiroshima they are layered. The whole thing is topped with a savory-sweet sauce.

Locals are very proud of their contribution to Japanese cuisine, and regional rivalry, while good natured, is strong. Be prepared to be quizzed about whether you prefer your okonomiyaki Hiroshima or Kansai style. Sitting at the counter of a small okonomiyaki joint (especially if you give the local lingo a try) is one of the best places for the outsider to connect with Hiroshima folk. Okonomiyaki is often described as “Japanese pizza”. The name literally means “cook it how you like” and you can create your own personal okonomiyaki by selecting toppings to add to the standard dish. That’s where the analogy ends however, as the finished dish, while round and flat(ish), tastes nothing like pizza. Described as Hiroshima’s soul food, okonomiyaki began to be widely eaten in the years during and after the war when rice was in short supply, and people

O F T H TO P E TO P PI

NGS

1. E xtra neg i chopp 2. C ed gree heese n onion s 3. M ochi rice c a ke 4. Ik aten Frie d dried 5. S squid hiso pe rilla lea f

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added extra ingredients to simple wheat pancakes and street stalls selling okonomiyaki sprang up all over the city. Today, there are said to be about 2000 okonomiyaki shops, and a visit to at least one of them is likely to be at the top of any Japanese tourist’s list of things to do in Hiroshima. While it’s fun to mix and cook okonomiyaki on your own hotplate (often possible at Kansai style restaurants), here in Hiroshima, the cooking is left to the professionals. Watching the chef from the counter is like having front row seats at a cooking show.

How to order All Hiroshima okonomiyaki starts with the basic niku-tama, consisting of pork, eggs, cabbage between two thin crepes. Your first choice is which kind of noodles to add - thin soba noodles or thicker udon noodles. State your preference by asking for “niku-tama-soba” or “niku-tama-udon”. If you are really hungry you can opt for a double helping of noodles. Next, choose any additional “toppings” - as likely to go inside as they are on top. Common choices include green negi onions, seafood, mochi rice cake, cheese, korean kimchee, shiso leaf and natto. In winter, local oysters are also often available.

Vegetarians While the eggs rule it out for vegans, at first glance okonomiyaki appears to be promising option for hungry vegetarians. Chefs are generally happy to leave out the pork slices if you ask for niku-nashi (without meat), but most places do use lard and a kind of grease that includes pork stock. Shaved dried fish flakes or dried squid pieces are also likely to find their way into your meal. Strict vegetarians should head to Nagataya at the very end of the Hondori shopping arcade near the

A-bomb Dome; here they have a good appreciation of vegetarian orders and can cook up a completely vegetarian okonomiyaki. Also be aware that Otafuku okonomi sauce contains oyster extract. Seek out shops that use Carp sauce or offer Otafuku’s “From 1 Year Old” (issai kara) sauce.

How to eat Okonomiyaki is traditionally eaten hot (very hot) off the teppan griddle with a metal spatula (hera). The inexperienced diner who takes up the challenge may find their okonomiyaki is dried to a crisp by the time they are finished. It is by no means rude to ask for a small plate and chopsticks. To get a laugh, make your excuses with the expression nekojita nanode. Literally “I have a cat’s tongue” which means you can’t take hot food. It isn’t necessarily a problem to linger at the counter and have some drinks, but be aware of your surroundings. If it is busy and people are waiting to eat, you will be expected to vacate your seats soon after you are done eating.


Aonori (dried seaweed)

Okonomiyaki sauce

Eggs

A walk on the wild “sides”

Soba or udon noodles

Most okonomiyaki shops will have a range of side dishes that can be whipped up on the teppan. You can play it safe and go for something like asparagus wrapped in bacon (bekon no aspara maki), or go for something a little more adventurous.

Sliced pork

Kaki Oysters Uni horen Sea urchin grilled with spinach Shirako Fish sperm

Bean sprouts

Horumon-yaki Grilled beef or pork offal Takowasa Chopped raw octopus marinated in wasabi Ika no Shiokara Fermented salty raw squid meat and guts (great with sake or shochu) Ika-natto Slimy natto fermented soy beans with raw egg and squid topped with green onions and wasabi Negi green onions

Mokuren Okonomiyaki & Teppanyaki Traditional & creative okonomiyaki on 6F of the Full Focus Bldg in front of Hiroshima Stn. Local oysters & sake. Ice cold draft beer. Left out of the elevator, look for the pink counter on the left near the back. 10:00-23:00 (L.O. 22:30) 082-568-7850 map A p.28 19

Tempura crisps

Nagataya Great okonomiyaki and plenty of space to sit, a stone’s throw away from Peace Park. Excellent understanding of vegetarian needs.

Chopped cabbage

Mon-Fri 11:00-20:30 (L.O.), Sat 11:00-21:00 (L.O.), Sun, hols 10:30-20:30 082-247-0787 map C p.29 [B-1] 20

Sarii-chan Okonomiyaki Affable, soccer-loving okonomiyaki-ist serving Hiroshima’s favorite dish and drinks near Hiroshima Station. 11:30-14:30, 17:00-23:00 Closed Saturdays 082-236-7303 map A p.28 31

This is a pretty standard

Dried fish powder

okonomiyaki, but most shops will have their own recipe with different ingredients and combinations. Batter

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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SPORT

Fan fantastic Hiroshima is passionate about its pro-sports teams, and Hiroshima Toyo Carp baseball and Sanfrecce soccer games are great opportunities to see locals letting their hair down. In the bleachers or in the back of a taxi, sports talk is always great for breaking the ice.

HIROSHIMA TOYO CARP

SANFRECCE

Watching the Hiroshima Carp at Mazda “Zoom Zoom” Stadium is one of Hiroshima’s greatest spectacles. Baseball fan or not, you won’t easily forget the experience.

They’ll probably always be runners up in the hearts of locals, but Sanfrecce have grabbed a loyal following while becoming a force in the J-League. Coach Hajime Moriyasu took his team to the 2012 J-League title, Sanfrecce’s first, and for good measure, did it again the following season. They are only the second team to win back-toback championships in the J-League’s history. The biggest problem with Sanfrecce is their home. A 35 minute ride out of town stadium, built for athletics and so big even a crowd of 35,000 doesn’t fill it. Club and fans have been lobbying for a purposebuilt football stadium, hopefully they will get one soon.

Tickets start at ¥1700 for general admission in the upper deck infield. Hardcore fans are to be found in the “Performance” zone, with its band and male cheerleaders in traditional garb. Most regular fans, however, opt for ¥2100 lower right deck seats which have a good atmosphere and plenty of opportunity to meet locals. Make sure to buy a pack of Carp balloons (¥400 for a pack of 4) from one of the roving vendors to set off in the seventh inning stretch when thousands of them fill the air. Japanese baseball fans love their gear, and the Carp lead the way in that regard. Not only can you buy caps, jerseys and keychains, but the Carp sell various clackers to cheer the team on, as well as traditional happi robes and bandanas. This year the Carp have added a number of new items to their line. The Carp alarm clock and kendama are sold out, but at press time you could still get a Carp rubber ducky, aloha shirt or pith helmet. But you’d better hurry. There is a large souvenir store at ground level just inside the main gate. Carp Home Game Schedule All games played at Mazda Stadium unless stated.

Pre-season 3/7 (12:30) 3/8 (13:00) vs Yakult Swallows 3/14 (13:00) vs Kintetsu Buffaloes in Fukuyama 3/15 (13:00) vs Kintetsu Buffaloes 3/22 (14:00) vs Softbank Hawks

Inter-league 5/26 vs Chiba Lotte Marines in Onomichi 5/27 vs Chiba Lotte Marines 5/28 vs Chiba Lotte Marines 6/2 vs Nippon Ham Fighters 6/3 vs Nippon Ham Fighters 6/4 vs Nippon Ham Fighters 6/5 vs Rakuten Eagles 6/6 vs Rakuten Eagles 5/7 vs Rakuten Eagles

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Central League 3/27 (18:00) vs Yakult Swallows 3/28 (14:00) vs Yakult Swallows 3/29 (13:30) vs Yakult Swallows 4/7 (18:00) vs Yomiuri Giants 4/8 (18:00) vs Yomiuri Giants 4/9 (18:00) vs Yomiuri Giants 4/17 (18:00) vs Chunichi Dragons 4/18 (14:00) vs Chunichi Dragons 4/19 (13:30) vs Chunichi Dragons 4/25 (13:00) vs Hanshin Tigers 4/26 (13:00) vs Hanshin Tigers 4/28 (18:00) vs Yokohama DeNA BayStars 4/29 (14:00) vs Yokohama DeNA BayStars 4/30 (18:00) vs Yokohama DeNA BayStars 5/4 (17:00) vs Yomiuri Giants 4/5 (14:00) vs Yomiuri Giants 5/6 (13:30) vs Yomiuri Giants 5/15 (18:00) vs Yokohama DeNA BayStars 5/16 (14:00) vs Yokohama DeNA BayStar 5/17 (13:30) vs Yokohama DeNA BayStars 5/22 (18:00) vs Yakult Swallows 5/23 (14:00) vs Yakult Swallows 5/24 (13:30) vs Yakult Swallows

Sanfrecce J-league Home Games 3/7 (14:00) vs Ventforet Kofu 3/22 (14:00) vs Urawa Reds 4/4 (18:30) vs Vissel Kobe 4/25 (14:00) vs Shimizu S Pulse 5/2 (16:00) vs Vegalta Sendai 5/10 (19:00) vs Gamba Osaka 5/23 (19:00) vs Albirex Niigata

Yamazaki Nabisco Cup Group Stage Home Games 4/8 (19:00) vs Shonan Belmare 5/27 (19:00) vs FC Tokyo 6/3 (19:00) vs Ventforet Kofu


Photo ©Tomo www.flickr.com/photos/azzuriceo/

return of the ace Words: Tim Buthod

Since 2008, Kenta Maeda has been the ace of the Carp pitching staff, posting 82 wins and a 2.44 ERA over his seven-year career. From 2001 to 2007, Hiroki Kuroda was the ace, winning 103 games over seven years before heading off to the majors. In 2015, the Carp will have both, and Hiroshima fans’ mouths are watering over the prospect. Over the last 7 years, as Maeda emerged as a star in Japan, winning the Sawamura Award as Japan’s best pitcher in 2010 over Masahiro Tanaka and Yu Darvish, Kuroda has continued to be productive in the major leagues, averaging 30 starts and eleven wins per season. Before Kuroda left, he always said that if he came back to Japan he would come back to the Carp. This is probably because of the unique opt-out clause the Carp had given him in his last contract with the team in 2006. While other Japanese players had to wait to become free agents or be auctioned off as high-priced human chattel in the posting system, the Carp agreed to let Kuroda leave in the middle of his 4-year contract, as long as it was to try his luck in the majors rather than with another

Japanese team. In 2007, Kuroda signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers. In seven years with the Dodgers and the New York Yankees, Kuroda proved to be a solid, if not spectacular, major league starting pitcher. Three times he pitched in the playoffs, and except for one brutal outing, he posted impressive postseason numbers. Leaving out a disastrous 2nd-inning exit in 2009, Kuroda’s postseason ERA was a stellar 2.22. In 2014, at age 39, he was the only Yankee starter not to land on the disabled list, finishing 11-9 with a 3.71 ERA in 32 starts. Though the Carp struggled after they lost their ace, those struggles planted the seeds of renewal. While imports such as Colby Lewis and Brian Bullington kept the team afloat, the Carp used the high draft picks earned from successive losing seasons to stock their pitching staff with talented prospects. In addition to Maeda, there was Yusuke Nomura, who won the Central League Rookie of the Year award in 2012. Two highly touted rookies, Daiichi Ohsera and Aren Kuri, arrived on the scene in 2014. Kuri has yet to make

much of a mark, but Ohsera won 10 games to take top rookie honors. Impressive performances by import Deunte Heath late in the season also give cause for hope. Rumors swirl every year of the threat of Maeda being posted to the majors, and Kuroda is not a young pitcher, so this may be the year the Carp need to make their move. Coming off two successive third-place finishes, the team seems to have strengthened its hand. Assuming the durable Kuroda can maintain his form at age forty, Carp fans are looking at entering the 2015 season with a pair of aces. If one of the young pitchers like Ohsera or Nomura can break out and move to the next level, who knows? They may have three of a kind.

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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KeMBY˙s I N T E R N A T I O N A L

Tapas, Bar & Restaurant 17:30-00:30 Sunday-Thursday 17:30-01:00 Friday-Saturday

FREE TM

Naka-ku, Otemachi 2-9-13 082-249-6201 map C p.29 [B-2] 9

facebook.com/kembyshiroshima twitter.com/KembysHiroshima Hiroshima Restaurants > KeMBY’s OK!

Happy Hou!!r 17:30-19:30 All alcohol

Good food, Good people, Good atmosphere

¥ 2 0 0 OF F

Looking for high quality food in a casual atmosphere? Kemby’s has all the bases covered with a great selection of tapas, pasta and Tex Mex, as well as gourmet sausages, seafood and their famous burgers. Owner Prakash prides himself on his excellent wine selection, and is happy to help you make the right choice. Whether you are in the mood for a meal, you want to shoot some pool, or just shoot the breeze with the bilingual staff and friendly regulars, great nights start at Kemby’s.

Cosy, clean bar with lots of local and imported craft beers all reasonably priced. Tapas and other dishes on the menu. Occasional live music on a Friday night. For food and music times check our facebook page.

Lunch 11:30-15:00 Friday-Tuesday Dinner 17:00-1:00 Thursday-Tueday

FREE TM

Naka-ku, Horikawa-cho 5-15 2F 082-249-0630 map B p.28 17

facebook.com/kembysplus OK!

Happy HFoFu!!r 17:00-19:00 ¥10 0 O Beers & Cocktails


BE MORE THAN A TOURIST

Pullout Guide

HIROSHIMA

←Iwakuni

UJINA

←Kyushu

NINOSHIMA

Takehara→ Onomichi→ Osaka→

KURE

MIYAJIMA ETAJIMA

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/23


language DIRECTIONS

SHOPPING

Where’s ...? ...wa doko desu ka? ...はどこですか? straight massugu 真直ぐ right migi 右 left hidari 左 far tooi 遠い near chikai 近い turn magatte 曲がって Would you call …. for me? … ni denwa shite moraemasen ka? …に(代わりに)電話してもらえませんか?

Do you have…? … ga arimasu ka? ..がありますか?

AT THE ONSEN men’s bath otoko-yu 男湯 women’s bath onna-yu 女湯 open-air bath roten-buro 露天風呂 open-air foot spa ashi-yu 足湯 soap sekken 石けん Can I use this onsen if I have a tattoo? tattoo ga arimasu ga, koko no onsen ni hairemasu ka? タトゥーがありますが、ここの温泉に入れますか? Can I use this onsen if I cover my tattoo? tattoo o kakushitara, koko no onsen ni hairemasu ka? タトゥーを隠したら、ここの温泉に入れますか?

SOCIALIZING Can I buy you a drink? ippai ogorimashou ka? 一杯おごりましょ うか You’re cute! (to girls) kawaii! かわいい You’re cool! (to boys) kakko ii! かっこいい! Let’s take a selfie together serufii o torimasho セルフィーを撮りましょう Do you mind if I speak to you in English? eigo de hanashite mo ii desu ka? 英語で話してもいいですか? How about we…? Issho-ni … wa dou? いっしょに…はどう? ...go out for something to eat gohan o tabe-ni iku ごはんをたべに行く ...go drinking nomi-ni iku 飲みに行く ...appreciate the flower blossoms hanami o suru 花見をする ...share a hanami boxed lunch hanami bento o wakeru 花見弁当を分ける ...go check out Osuga Osuga e itte miru 大須賀へ行ってみる

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Please kudasai ください Please (do me this favor) onegaishimasu お願いします Thank you arigato ありがとう Where’s a good place to …? ...ni wa doko ga ii desu ka? ..するにわどこがいいですか? ...buy throat lozenges nodo-ame o kau のど飴を買う ...antihistamine medicine kou hisutamin-zai 抗ヒスタミン剤 How much is this? kore wa ikura desu ka? これはいくらですか? Do you accept credit cards? kurejito kaado o tsukaemasu ka? クレジットカードを使えますか? This one please Kore ni shimasu これにします。 Can I have … more? mo …. kudasai も...ください

NUMBERS 1 2 3 4 5

ichi 一 ni 二 san 三 shi (yon) 四 go 五

6 roku 六 7 shichi (nana) 七 8 hachi 八 9 kyu 九 10 ju 十

50 goju 五十 100 hyaku 百 1,000 sen 千 10,000 ichi-man 一万 Yen en 円・¥

EATING & DRINKING (To call the waiter / waitress) sumimasen! すみません! We’ll start with a draft beer toriaezu nama biiru kudasai とりあえず生ビール下さい I’ll have another one mou ippai もういっぱい / Cheers! kampai! 乾杯! Hot sake atsukan 熱燗 Cold sake hiyazake 冷や酒 What do you recommend? osusume wa nan desu ka? おすすめはなんですか? I can’t eat... ...taberu-koto ga dekimasen ○○たべることが、できません。 wheat 小麦 (komugi) / meat 肉類 (niku-rui) / pork 豚肉 (buta-niku) / nuts ナッツ(nattsu) / fish 魚(sakana) / eggs 卵 (tamago) / allergy アレルギー (arerugi) / seafood 魚介類 (gyokai-rui) / dairy products 乳製品 (nyuseihin) / soy 大豆製品 (daizu-seihin) That’s really delicious! sugoku oishii (Hiroshima dialect: bari umai!) すごくおいしい!


List of places CULTURE

SHOPPING 1

IACE Travel - Map C [B-1]

18

Mabui Hiroshima Oyster Bar - Map C [C-2]

2

Outsider Book Nook / Global Lounge - Map C [C-1]

19

Mokuren Okonomiyaki & Teppanyaki - Map A

3

Travel With - Map B

4

Yamatoya - Map B

1

A-Bomb Dome - Map C [B-1]

20

Nagataya Okonomiyaki - Map C [B-1]

2

Children’s museum - Map C [A-2]

21

Namaste Hiroshima Station - Map A

3

Cinetwin Hondori - Map B

22

Ninnikuya Manao - Map B

4

Former Bank of Japan - Map C [B-2]

23

Organ-za - Map C [A-1]

5

Gallery G - Map A

24

Otis! - Map C [A-2]

1

Cleo Hair International - Map C [B-1]

6

Hatchoza Cinema - Map B

25

Pasta La Vista - Map C [B-2]

2

Family Pool - Map C [B-1] (Open July - August)

7

Hiroshima City International House - Map A

26

Plus Minus - Map B

3

Green Arena Gym & Pool - Map C [B-1]

8

Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art

27

Porta Porte - Map B

4

Laff Hair Design - Map C [B-1]

Map C [D-3]

28

Robatayaki Jindaiko - Map B

HE ALTH & BE AUT Y

9

Hiroshima City Tourist Information - Map C [B-2]

29

Rojiura Teppan Kotaro - Map C [C-3]

10

Hiroshima International Center - Map C [B-2]

30

Saishoku Kenbi - p.28 [A-1]

11

Hiroshima Museum of Art - Map C [B-1]

31

Sarii-chan Okonomiyaki - Map A

12

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum - Map C [B-2]

32

Shabuzen - Map B

1

Global Lounge - Map C [C-1]

13

Hiroshima Prefectural Art Museum - Map A

33

Sprout - Map C [A-1]

2

Popeye Media Cafe Ebisu-dori - Map B

14

International Exchange Lounge - Map C [A-2]

34

Tinto - Map C [B-2]

3

Popeye Media Cafe Hondori - Map C [C-1]

15

Salon Cinema 1/2 - Map C [B-3]

35

Tokaichi Apartment - Map C [A-1]

16

Shimizu Gekijo - Map A

36

Warung Matahari - Map C [B-3]

17

Shukkeien Garden - Map A

37

Zucchini: bar and cucina - Map C [B-1]

ACCOMMODATION OUTDOOR CAFES

INTERNE T

YAKITORI 1

Carp-dori - Map B

2

Ukon - map B

1

Dormy Inn - Map C [B-2]

2

Hana Hostel - Map A

38

24/7 Coffee & Roaster Ujina - p.31

3

Hotel Flex - Map A

3

43 - Map A

4

Ikawa Ryokan - Map C [A-2]

1

45bis “Awa“ - Map C [C-2]

5

J-Hoppers Hiroshima - Map C [A-2]

5

Caffe Ponte - Map C [B-1]

6

K’s House - Map A

5

Cafe Spice - Map B

7

Reino Inn Peace Park Hiroshima - Map C [B-2]

39

Kyobashi Riverside Cafes - Map A

• Police 110

8

Washington Hotel - Map B

40

Mahogany - p.27 [E-2]

• Fire and Ambulance 119

EMERGENCY TELEPHONE NUMBERS

• 24 Hour Hiroshima Hospital Information in English Freedial

NIGHTLIFE RESTAUR ANT & CAFES

0120-169912 • 24h Emergency pediatric hospital (Funairi Byoin)

1

45bis “Awa“ - Map C [C-2]

082-232-6195

1

45 quarante-cinq -Map B

2

Barcos - Map B

• Multilingual Interpreting Service (Trio-phone)

2

Artcafe ELK - Map C [B-1]

3

Bar Edge - Map B

082-247-9715

3

Bakudan-ya Honten - Map C [C-3]

4

Bon Voyage - Map B

09:00-19:00 (April-September)

4

Cafe Cinnamon - Map C [A-2]

5

Cafe Spice - Map B

09:00-18:00 (October-March)

5

Caffe Ponte - Map C [B-1]

6

Chinatown - Map B

• TELL English counseling service 03-5774-0992

6

Chamonix Mont Blanc - Map B

7

Centre Point - Map B

(09:00-23:00)

7

Choi Choi Ya - Map B

8

Ekimae Chelsea Drinks - Map A

• Resident Consultation & Interpreting Service

8

Cusco Cafe - Map C [C-1]

9

Kemby’s - Map C [B-2]

082-241-5010

9

Galley - Map B

10

Koba - Map B

• Immigration Information Center 0570-013-904

10

Graffity Mexican Diner - Map C [C-2]

11

La Luna - Map B

• Human Rights Counseling Center for Foreign Citizens

11

J-Cafe & Bar Motel - Map C [C-3]

12

Mac - Map B

082-228-5792

12

Kanak - Map C [B-2]

13

Mambos - Map B

13

Kanawa ASSE - Map A

14

Molly Malone’s - Map B

14

Kanawa Kaki Meian - Map A

15

New King - Map B

15

Kanawa Oyster Boat - Map C [B-2]

16

Southern Cross - Map B

16

Karşiyaka - Map C [B-2]

17

The Shack Bar and Grill - Map B

17

Kemby’s+ Taps & Tapas - Map B

18

Tropical Bar Revolución - Map B

Map A: p.28 Map B: p. 28 Map C: p.29

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/25


A

B

C

City map

OSHIBAKOEN

OSHIBA

MISASAKITAMACHI

MITAKIHONMACHI

1

OSHIBA PARK “Koutsuu Traffic Land”

JR MITAKI STATION

Mit

ak

iba

sh

i

im sh

ro

Hi

MITAKIMACHI

a

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eb 4

Highw ay

Kit

a-

oh

KUSUNOKICHO

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NISHI HIROSHIMA STATION

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265

MISASAMACHI

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at

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pr

Ex

Sa

o

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Mitaki Temple

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i

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in Line

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inkansen

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2

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YOKAGAWACHO

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TERAMACHI HIROSE KITAMACHI

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HIROSEMACHI KAMITENMACHO

Outdoor Family Pool Open July-August

C

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Legal Administration Office Cinematographic and Audio-visual Library

TOKAICHIMACHI

achi-

ori Hiros eb

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FUKUSHIMACHO

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ashi

Aioib

ashi

Hirode Tenm n a bashi

KANNONMACHI Nishi-Kannon-machi

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ori

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Tsuchiya Hospital

HIGASHIKANNONMACHI

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i

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FUNAIRI NAKAMACHI

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Ebis red

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HORIKA

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Hiroshima Information Plaza

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a-oh

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Fukuya

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Nam

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4

Kannon Primary School

Aioi-

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a

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KAMIYACHO

Mitsubishi Tokyo Hondo ri (c UFJ Bank 4F ove

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i or Ku

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HATCHOBORI Tate-machi

Hiroshima Bank Sumitomo Mitsui Bank

Hondori

Heiwa-

NISHIKANNONMACHI

26\

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Ho nk bas awa hi

DOBASHICHO

Kamiya-cho Higashi

Kamiya-cho Nishi Mizuho Bank Rijo Kaikan Sun Mall

yasu Moto shi ba

HONKAWA PARK

KOAMICHO

Prefectural Office (Kencho)

SOGO

(Ky u-o

HONKAWACHO

tag

Honkawa Primary School

NEKOYACHO

SAKAIMACHI

aw

a)

Hiroshima Naka Post Office

Jogakuin

KYUGUCHIMON PARK Chuo Police Station Chokaku YMCA Templ Prefectural Office East Office Momiji Bank

Kencho-mae

Bus Center (3F)

Genbaku Dome-mae

wa

Tenm bash a i

TENMACHO

ri

Hiroshima Municipal Hospital

H

ka

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n-do

HANOVER PARK

Honkawa-cho

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H

Jona

Tennis courts

HONKAWACHO

Tokaichi-machi

ENOMACHI

Kannon-machi

Immigra Offic

wa

3

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Sorazayabashi

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Nak

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Hiroshima Castle

Motomachi Primary School

HIROSEKITA PARK

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Motomachi Senior High School

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Enryuji Temple (Tokasan)

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D

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F

MT. USHITA

1

MT. MITATE

Ushita SHIN USHITA PARK

Kohei bash

i

USHITA PARK

Supermarket

Hiroden Streetcar

Post Office

Astram Line Monorail

Tourist Info

Covered arcade

짜100 Bicycle Parking

Foreign Currency Exchange

Public Bath

International ATM

Airport Bus

Play area

Meipuru~pu bus

Hiroshima Free Wi-Fi

Hotel

Futaba-no-sato walk

Hiroshima Jogakuin University

USHITAASAHI Ushita Primary School

USHITAWASEDA

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ta hi hi Us bas o

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40 Mahogany Peace Pagoda

Kinko Inari Shrine

HIGASHI AKUSHIMACHO

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Hakushima

To

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kiw

Teishin Hospital

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Kokuzenji Temple

HIKARIGAOKA

Shokoji Temple

FUTABANOSATO Detention Center

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Jogakuin Junior High School

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Jogakuin High School

KAMINOBORICHO

ri

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H

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E

F GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

HIJIYAMA PARK Hijiyamashita

COSTCO

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Danbara-1chome

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Hiroshima Mall

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MATSUGAWA PARK

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H

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Momiji Bank

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Hiroshima Station

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Noborimachi Primary School

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Noborimachi Junior High School

Onaga Primary School

Hiroshima Bank

Shukkeien-mae

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ONAGAMACHI

Katei Saibansho-mae

DANBARAHINODE

/27


ta

eb

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OSUGACHO Jo

H

3

Memorial Cathedral for World Peace

/ Densha-dori HAioi-dori Yanagibas hi

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14 Molly Mallone’s

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Koba 10

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9

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Sky Walk Escalator

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27 Porta H Porte

12 Mac

7 Centre Point Danbara Shopping Center

Barcos 2

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4

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7 Choi Choi Ya H

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namiki / nagarekawa area

DANBARAYAMAS

La Luna DANBARAMINAMI 11

New King 15

H

H

6

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FUKUROMACHI PARK

H

26 Plus Minus

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Takeya Primary School

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1 45 quarante-cinq

ALICE GARDEN

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HIROSHIMA BANK

Yagenbori-dori

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Kanayama-cho

Chinatown

SHINTENCHI PARK

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6 Chamonix Mont Blanc 28 Robatayaki Jindaiko

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17 The Shack Bar and Grill

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T

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Hiroshima Mall

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17 Kemby’s+ Taps & Tapas

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i

16

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8

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14

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31

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13

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H

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H

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Noborimachi Primary School

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13


2

3

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34

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5

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H

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3

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31

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39

HASHIMOTOCHO

Noborimachi Primary School Memorial Cathedral for World Peace

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ma ba

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29

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1 2

18

i (co ve

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H

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H

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H

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Buts PARCO Hiroshima 1 uda n-do Information ri Former ALICE SHINTENCHI Plaza 10 4 Bank of FUKUROMACHI GARDEN Japan Don Fukuromachi FUKUROMACHI Fukuro-machi YAGENBORI Quijotte SHINTENCHI Primary PARK PARK School H Shirakami Shrine

H

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16

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9

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7

H

i

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5

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9

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12

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H

H

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ash

PARK

TOKAICHIMACHI

33

HONKAWACHO

Honkawa-cho

14

Tsuchiya Hospital

15

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SEIBUKAGAN RYOKUCHI PARK

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Hiroshima Chuo Post Office Naka Ward Office

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23 35

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Ho nk bas awa hi

HONKAWA PARK

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DOBASHICHO

5

24

NAKAJIMACHO

4 Iwaka Ryokan

Bunka Koryu Kaikan

Aster Plaza

KAKOMACHI

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KOKUTAIJI PARK

Hei

HIROSEMACHI

J-Hoppers

4

NEKOYACHO

Ichiriki

NISHITOKAICHIMACHI

1

ENOMACHI

ENOMACHI PARK

SAKAIMACHI Koami-cho Dobashi

KOAMICHO

2 KAWARAMACHI

Na Kan kajima zakib ash i

Funairi-machi

Kozaki Primary School Nakajima Primary School

Otemachi Commercial High School

Hiroshima City Hall

TAKEYACHO

C

i

sh

i

Shin-sum iyoshi bashi

HIGASHI SENDA PARK

A

ri

/29

Ek

a-do shim Haku ori

a) Ta Shopkanobas hi ping Stre et

B

Takanobashi

Naga

o- ima GetHiroshima / Spring 2015 ha e

ri

Chuo

wa-d

reka

B

do

a-

am

nbor Yage

ori

iki-d Nam

ori

ae-d

Ekim

dori

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i-dor mach Tera

shiba shi

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36

dori

jiy

i

i-dor

KAMISHINONOMECHO

SAKI

Jizo-

Sky Walk Escalator

HIJIYAMA

Hi

-dori

NBARAHINODE

ri

UNAIRIMACHI

3 Sum iyo

A

-do Ozu

AMIKANIYA

awa

Geibi Line

Rijo-

COSTCO

MAZDA ZOOM ZOOM STADIUM

yasug

e

Ky a( aw

nk Ho

tag

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ONAGAHIGASHI ONAGANISHI

u-o

Shinka

Sanyo

ri do o-

ASHIKANIYACHO

on eb Ak

CHI

Onaga Primary School

Moto

Lin ain oM ny Sa

city center

C

onmachi

Junior High School


GETTING AROUND

Streetcar lines Hiroden Line #1 (Hiroshima Station > Hiroshima Port) Hiroden Line #2 (Hiroshima Station > Miyajima-guchi) Hiroden Line #3 (Hiroden Nishi Hiroshima > Hiroshima Port) Hiroden Line #5 (Hiroshima Station > Hijiyama-shita > Hiroshima Port) Hiroden Line #6 (Hiroshima Station > Eba) Hiroden Line #7 (Yokogawa Station > Hiroden Honsha mae) Hiroden Line #8 (Yokogawa Station > Eba) Hiroden Line #9 (Hatchobori > Hakushima) Astram Line (Hondori > Koikikoenmae)

Asa Zoo (Kamiyasu)

i

tor

ka Ta

Limousine bus (Hiroshima City > Hiroshima Airport)

su

iya

m Ka

Meipuru~pu bus

shi

iga asuh

Y

ndai

amo

Bish

Chorakuji

World Heritage Route (boat) (Peace Park > Miyajima)

chi

Oma

ichi

Furu

Matsuyama Super Jet Ferry

Tomo Obara

Nakasuji

Transport Museum

Tomochuo Ozuka

¥190~480

Big Arch Stadium

Gionshinbashikita

Ushita

Hakushima

(Fudoinmae)

e

Yokogawa Station JR

Kencho-mae

Betsuin-mae

ai

Tera-machi

Hiroden nishi Hiroshima

s

hi

ac

m

n-

no

an

K hi-

c

a-

him

us

k Fu

ho

Line Shinkansen Station

m

on

nn

Ka

hi

ac

c a-

nm

Te

ho

i-c

m

a Ko

ho

d u-

b

m Bo

ak ic nb(Atom hi Dobashi ac chi a i-m air n-m n Fu i-ho ir a n Fu Ge

ae m ome)

e-

om

Kamiyacho Nishi

Hiroshima Station JR

Hakushima Line, All Destinations,

¥110

Hakushima

Hiroshima Station

Shukkeien-mae Jogakuin-mae Kamiyacho Higashi

ho

-c

isu

Eb

a

m

ya

na

Ka

En

o

h -c

hi

ac

i-m

ar

In

Hondori Peace Park

Okonomi-mura mae

M

Funairi-minami-machi

Nisseki byoin mae

Hiroden Honsha mae

Minami machi 6-chome

i

b

ki-

iyu

h as

The flat fare for inner city travel is ¥160, (child ¥80)

a ug

k zo Fu ai- ae d -m ro Hi oin y nb Ke

e m ho -c e -3 om a h e in Uj -4-c om a in -ch Uj a-5 i in or Uj n-d iga a K

Ujina 2-chome

¥160

Moto-Ujina-guchi Hiroshima Port

Miyajima

Matsuyama

30\

ae

m

o-

kk

M

The fare for travel on Miyajima bound streetcars varies according to distance. (¥260 to Miyajima)

i-m

m

ina

Eba

Miyajima-guchi

e

m

ho

-c

i-2

h ac

M

Takano-bashi

Funairi-kawaguchi-cho

uy

ae

m

o-

sh

u ak

i-k

m

ina

i

sh

ba

a-

am

H

Shiyakusho-mae

Funairi-saiwai-cho

am

ijiy

Museum of Contemporary Art

ita

sh

a-

jiy

Hi

Fukuro-machi Chuden-mae

a

c 1-

ar

nb

Da

Mazda Stadium

e

m

ho

Matoba cho

Hatchobori

Tate-machi

D

ho

i-c

sh

a ob

k

Katei Saibansho-mae

Bus Center

o ch

a-

aw

nk

Ho

Tokaichi machi

Nishi Hiroshima Station JR

Sanyo Main

Museum of Art

Yokogawa 1-chome e

in nL

oM

(Ushita)

Johoku

Yokogawa Station

ny

Big Wave

Kabe Lin

Mitaki JR

Mitaki Temple

Miyajima Guchi JR

Fudoin Temple

Fudoinmae

(Koikikoenmae)

Ni

JR Train Lines

Nishihara

Astram Line fares vary according to distance.

Koikikoenmae

Sa

JR Ferry and Matsudai Ferry to Miyajima

(Chorakuji)


outdoor cafes

A lot has changed in Hiroshima since GetHiroshima began 15 years ago. One welcome change is the increase in the number of open air cafes.

For a coastal city built around so many waterways there is still a long way to go, but things are definitely improving. We encourage you to seek out and patronise these al fresco spots trying to entice Hiroshima’s cafe society outdoors - it’s the perfect way to enjoy the “City of Water”.

WATERFRONT

PEACE PARK

Caffe Ponte - Map p.29 [B-1]

CITY VIEW

Mahogany - Map p.27 [E-2]

5

40

AT NIGHT

RIVERSIDE

24/7 Coffee & Roaster Ujina (Flex Gallery) Kyobashi Riverside Cafes - - Map A p.28

39

38

Cafe Spice - Map B p.28

Ujina-4-chome Ujina-5-chome Kaigan-dori

p Hiroshim a Ex

Moto-Ujina-guchi

re

ss

5

3 ute Ro

Kaigan-dori

38

Hiroshima Port

UJINA ISLAND

Grand Prince Hotel

43 - Map A p.28

3

KANAWAJIMA

45 bis awa - Map p.29 [C-2]

1

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/31


Etajima Cycling

Bicycle-friendly infrastructure, accessibility by ferry and a mix of flat coastal

Getting There

roads and challenging climbs through a mountainous interior make the island of Etajima a great destination for cycling enthusiasts and novices alike.

Etajima Island in Hiroshima Bay is best known the former Imperial Naval Academy (now a JMSDF training school) located and its oysters and mikan oranges. In good weather Etajima offers beautiful views of the Inland Sea and has also some reasonable beaches. It is, however, first and foremost a working island. Majestic herons take flight from oyster rafts as crystal clear water laps sand strewn with all manner of debris. Mikan groves grow alongside shipbuilding yards. Swing around a corner to see a military firing range or a huge beached ship being pulled apart for scrap. The contrasts can sometimes be jarring, but for those in search of “real Japan”, a tour of Etajima is always interesting

Ferries from Hiroshima Port run to Kirikushi, Mitaka & Nakamachi on the northern coast of Etajima in 25-40min. Pick up a “Cycle Pass” at Ujina to take your bike on local ferries for free for 3 days.

Getting around Many road signs are written in roman characters. Get a grasp of the port names and follow the (sometimes intermittent) blue cycle line and you should be fine. We suggest using our map in conjunction with the Japanese “Cycle island Etajima” map available at Ujina Port Rental cycles • Available at the ports & Furusato Kouryukan Cycle Station 09:00-16:00. • ¥1000 deposit + ¥500 (¥1000 for electric-assist). • Drop off at any rental cycle point (deposit forfeited unless returned to same place) • Reservations 2 days in advance requested on 0823-42-4871[ja].

32\


Ferry times in

a→

na Uji

Ujina → Kirikushi (30min) 宇品 → 切串 Adult ¥460 12 and under ¥230 Bicycle ¥190 07:10, 07:40, 08:10, 08:40, 09:20, 10:00, 10:40, 11:20, 12:00, 13:30, 14:10, 14:50, 15:30, 16:10, 16:50, 17:30, 18:05, 18:40, 19:20, 20:00, 20:45, 21:30 (except Sun & Hols)

Uj

切串港 Kirikushi Port

1.9km

Kirikushi → Ujina (30min) 切串 → 宇品 Adult ¥460 12 and under ¥230 Bicycle ¥190 06:40, 07:10, 07:40, 08:10, 08:40, 09:20, 10:00, 10:40, 11:20, 12:00, 13:30,14:10, 14:50, 16:10, 16:50, 17:30, 18:05, 18:40, 19:20, 20:10, 20:55, 20:55 (except Sun & Hols)

Ten’ou →

(Nishioki)

切串港 Kirikushi Port (Fukikoshi)

Rental

View Point

7.6km

1.6km

297

5.4km クマン岳 Kumantake ▲399.8

2.0km

三高港 Mitaka Port Rental

4.7km

2.4km 3.7km

3.7km

3.2km 487

Yumekirai

Mitaka Yama (Battery Ruins) ▲402

Open Sat, Sun & Hols (10:00 ~ sunset)

Etta Jazz Cafe

4.3km

36

4.1km

2.1km

2.6km

Cycle Station

Shikada Park ●

Rental

2km 2.7km

Etajima Cityhall ● 宇根山 Uneyama (野登呂山 Notoroyama) 542▲

1km

Nishimura-an Udon & Soba

Shindozan Shinrin Park

4.1km

Yume no Oka

1.9km

Umibe no Shinsen Ichiba

2.5km

立山 Tateyama ▲149.1

2.3km

44

Exchange Promotion ● Center Sakura

Hama Grazie Sweets

1km Ogaki

1.2km

1.8km

Ookurokamishima

Okinoshima

Rental Rental Cycle

Tunnel W.C.

2.6km

6.3km

3.4km

Slope

299

0.7km

Mitaka → Ujina (approx 40min) 三高 → 宇品 Adult ¥680 12 and under ¥340 Bicycle ¥220 06:55 07:30 08:25 09:00 09:55 11:10 12:40 13:25 14:55 15:55 17:05 18:00 18:35 19:30 20:05 21:00

Almost flat

4.4km

0.8km

5.3km Ujina → Mitaka (approx 40min) 宇品 → 三高 Adult ¥680 12 and under ¥340 Bicycle ¥220 06:55 07:30 08:25 07:30 08:25 09:00 09:55 11:10 12:40 13:25 14:55 15:55 17:05 18:00 18:35 19:30 20:05 21:00

7km

4.3km

真道山 Shindozan ▲287

秋月港 Akizuki Port

nnel Akizuki Tu

中町港 Nakamachi Port 36

2.5km

Kure →

44

● Nomi Kaijo Lodge ● Seaside Onsen Nomi

487

3.4km

Traffic Lights

Kure →

Furusato ● Koryukan Rental

Cycle Station

487

小用港 Koyo Port

高田港 Takata Port

Mitaka dam

36

Sun Beach Okimi ●

1.2km

JMSDF First Service School Former Imperial Naval Academy ●

4.3km

487

古鷹山 Furutakayama ▲394.0

3km

1.9km

Former Imperial Naval Academy 90min Guided Tours Weekdays 10:30, 13:00, 15:00 Sat, Sun, Hols 10:00. 11:00, 13:00, 15:00 (No sandals, shorts or tank tops)

2.4km

3.5km

487

6.4km 5km

▲438 陀峯山 Dabozan

Kure → Hayase-oohashi bridge

天狗岩 Tengu-iwa ▲

Hills Ferry Terminal Restaurants

Small Boat Terminal Onsen

Supermarket

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/33


Kid’s Page Family Friendly Hiroshima Young children are much loved in Japan and kids can provide great opportunities for connecting with locals and Hiroshima offers plenty of fun for those with little ones in tow.

Kid-o-Kid (Bournlund) 6F Pacela shopping center. Pay-as-you-go indoor play area for 6 months to 12 years. Also room to run around on an outdoor terrace with a nice view of the castle.

While the center of Peace Memorial Park demands a more solemn demeanor, it’s fine for kids to run about in the greener parts of the park and along the riverbanks. North of the park, the grassy riverbanks widen. “Hanover Park” is to the right, which is a concrete space popular with local skateboard and BMXers. The Children’s Science Museum is highly interactive, fun & free of charge. Don’t miss the old steam locomotive next door.

Models and interactive exhibits inside and and crazy bikes out back. 25 min by Astram Line monorail. Admission ¥510/¥250 + ¥100 to ride the crazy bicycles.

Asa Zoo Central Hiroshima has a lot of small public parks but the play facilities tend to be a little uninspiring. That said a few minutes on a slide or a swing set can bring fun and relief to parents and children. Look for the monkey icon

TIPS

Can you find all ten?!

A singer or musician performing along the riverside or under a bridge - 20pts Samurai mask with a moustache in the castle - 20pts

34\

Spread out so can take a while to see everything. Petting zoo, playground and grassy areas. 50 min by bus from Hiroshima Station (#9 from South Exit) Admission ¥510/¥170.

on the map for playgrounds.

Peace City Scavenger Hunt Find a gacha-gacha machine 20pts (find a toy poo for a bonus 50pts / golden poo toy + 1,000pts!!)

Hijiyama Park

Transportation Museum

Toy Stores and Game Centers

Round 1 Multi-story game center with video games, purikura print club booths, karaoke, batting cages & more upper floors.

We’ve yet to meet a kid who doesn’t get excited by a castle, even if it is reconstructed. Try on a samurai helmet, peruse the museum, enjoy running around the grounds looking for turtles and koi in the moat. Adjacent Gokoku Shrine is interesting to walk through on the way to the outer walls with their sama shooting-spying holes.

Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art (HMOCA) has interesting sculptures around the main building. Wander the winding paths, good city views and playgrounds. The Skywalk escalator is pretty cool too.

City Center

Neverland 6F of the Edion electronics store (near Kamiyacho Nishi streetcar stop). Small play area, with lego , fun (and weird) gacha-gacha machines.

Hiroshima Castle

Fill up a notepad with “stamp rally” stamps from museums, stickers & sketches of things along the way.

Stamp rally station - 10pts each River Taxi, sightseeing boat, ferry or water craft - 10pts each

“Peace” written in 10 or more languages - 20pts Turtles (check the castle moat or in Shukkei-en garden) 10pts each Koi (carp) fish- 10pts each (golden or black koi + 50pts each) Wheely-treats: food cart vendors - 20pts each

Momiji-manju (maple leaf shaped cakes) - 10pts each

TOTAL:


J-FLY Trout Fishing Words / Photos: Rachel Kirby

“To him, all good things - trout as well as eternal salvation - came by grace; and grace comes by art; and art does not come easy.” (A River Runs Through It) If you’re looking for Kimiya Hiraki, chances are you’ll find him waist-deep in water. An avid fly fisherman, Kimiya spends as much time as possible out in the rivers of Hiroshima when the trout are running from March through August. But when it’s off-season look no further than J-FLY, his trout ponds in Takamiya-cho. What began as a place for Kimiya to perfect his casting has become a fully-fledged business, with two ponds stocked full of brown, rainbow and Japanese trout.

Kimiya and Yoko, his wife, are both passionate about fly-fishing. Kimiya caught his first trout eleven years ago and since then the sport has taken them halfway around the world, from Hokkaido to Tasmania and even as far afield as New Zealand. After a morning at J-FLY it’s easy to understand the allure. The ponds are out in the middle of the countryside, surrounded by trees and high hills, and often the only sound to be heard is the quiet splash of fish jumping. The lower pond is teeming with catch-and-release brown and rainbow trout, while a second pond higher up is home to the shy Japanese yamame trout. They’re very elusive and tricky to catch so it takes patience – and the right choice of dry fly – to get them to rise to the surface.

Learning a basic roll cast takes only 30 minutes and J-FLY can provide all the equipment and coaching needed for casting and fly-tying. Both Kimiya and Yoko speak excellent English and know all about fishing licenses and dates for the local season. Kimiya is also available as a river guide if you want to explore more fly-fishing around Hiroshima. At ¥3,000 per person (¥1,500 for 12-17 year olds, and free for children) it’s an inexpensive day out, with enough room for a group of up to eight people. There’s a clubhouse if it gets chilly and plenty of drinks and snacks available. Kimiya will even organize transport from central Hiroshima for small groups. So give fly-fishing a try; you might get hooked!

J-FLY is open from October to May. For more information and reservations: English website: www.j-fly.sakura.ne.jp/english.htm Email: info@j-Fly.sakura.ne.jp Phone: 090-1355-5437

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

/35


EVENTS ST PATRICK’S DAY PARTY

LIVE MUSIC

MAN WITH A MISSION

JACKSON BROWNE f March 17 f Hiroshima Bunka Gakuen Hall

¥9000, ¥10,000

NOEL GALLAGHER’S FLYING BIRDS f April 9 f March 17

f Hiroshima Bunka Gakuen Hall

f May 20 & 21

f Molly Malone’s

¥9000

f Blue Live

Live music, special drinks and giveaways. No cover charge

¥4200

ZAZEN BOYS

OUTDOOR

PECHA KUCHA NIGHT f March 29 f Organza

SUNDAY AFTERNOON FOOTBALL

¥1100

f Every Sunday 16:00-17:30

www.facebook.com/PechaKuchaHiroshima

f Chuo Koen Central Park

MICROBREWERY BEER FESTA

MANCHESTER UNITED SOCCER SCHOOL f April 28

f March 25-27

f Club Quattro

f Hiroshima University of Economics

¥4000

¥69,800 https://japan.manutdsoccerschools.com/

MIYAVI

GANSU INTERNATIONAL HIKING GROUP

f April 18-19 f Former site of the baseball stadium opposite A-bomb

Dome http://www.golden-garden.tv/beerfesta/

YOKOGAWA FUSHIGI ICHI & WONDER CARNIVAL f April 30

March 1 - Sensui island and Tomo-no-ura hina doll festival

f Club Quattro

(Fukuyama city)

¥4700

Early April - Hiking & Hanami on Sagi island (Mihara city)

BOOM BOOM SATELLITES

Early May - Mt Kumanojo (Kita-Hiroshima Town) See http://gansunetwork.wordpress.com/ for details.

MIYAJIMA “MARATHON” f April 5 f Miyajima

Challenging 15km course and 5km courses. Entry deadline March 15 http://island-marathon.com/miyajima-outline f April 26 f Yokogawa

f May 5

Neighborhood street festival with fun & games, cheap food

f Club Quattro

and drink and a a public cosplay event.

¥5000

36\


GRAND TOUR SETOUCHI CYCLE RIDE

KINTAI-KYO BRIDGE FESTIVAL FLEA MARKET

EASY SKANKING

f April 19 (Entry deadline March 15)

f April 29

f Centre Point / Dancehall, Reggae

f every 2nd Tuesday

(but must check in on April 18. No on the day registration.) Shimanami Kaido Sea Route cycle event starting and finishing on Mukaishima Island across from Onomichi.

FARMERS MARKETS

Enjoy Course (70km): ¥5,000

EURASIAN SUITE f every 4th Thursday f Bar Edge / Soul, Jazz, Old school House

Long Course (110km): ¥6,000

HIROSHIMA MINATO MARCHE

Challenge Course (140km): ¥7,000

f Ujina Port, Ujina

COMPACT

http://www.htv.jp/grandtour/ [ja]

f March 1 & 15 / April 5 & 19 / May 3 & 17

f every 3rd Wednesday f Bar Edge / Electro, House, Techno

SHIRAISHI TRAIL RUN f May 6 (Entry deadline April 20)

CLUB EVENTS

Run miniature version of Shikoku’s epic 1200km, 88 temple pilgrimage over just 8km on picturesque Shiraishi Island in neighboring Okayama Prefecture.

2015 DANCEHALL QUEEN SETOUCHI

WHAT ABOUT WEDNESDAY? f every 3rd Wednesday f Centre Point

Shiraishi-jima Island, Kasaoka, Okayama

ULTRA HAZE

https://www.facebook.com/events/825239087532624/

f every 2d Sunday f Bar Edge / Techno, Dubstep, Drum n’ bass, Reggae

HIBA-YAMA SKYLINE TRAIL RACE f May 17 (Entry deadline April 13)

FROIDE

Beautiful 99% trail races over 18.5km and 9km with some

f every 3rd Friday

killer climbs.

f Enjoint Bar Cover / House, Techno

SEA TO SUMMIT

THE CLUB ROCKS

f May 30-31 (Entry from March 1)

f every 3rd Friday

f Etajima Island

f Bar Edge / Rock, Soul, House

Good intro to adventure style racing. Early entry recommended if you hope to reserve a kayak.

NEW WORLD

http://www.montbell.jp/generalpage/index.php?general_

f every 4th Friday

id=255

f Sacred Spirits (Cafe Jamaica) / Techno, House

FLEA MARKETS SENDA WASSHOI FLEA MARKET

SOUL FOOD f March 28

f every last Thursday

f Mugen / Reggae gal dancer contest

f Centre Point / Soul, Funk

SUGAR & SPICE

IN DA DINING f every last Friday f Lotus (March / April) f Bar Edge (May) / Hip-Hop, Soul, House

RED BULL NIGHT f every last Saturday f Bon Voyage / House, Hip-Hop, Techno f Higashi Senda Park

f April 26 19:00-24:00

IZMICAL

f 3/22 (3/29) / 4/5 (4/26) / 4/19 (4/26) / 5/10

f June 28 19:00-24:00

f every 4th Friday

5/31) / 5/24 (5/31)

f Centre Point / Jamaica Rae Town style Soul Jazz party

f Bar Edge / Eclectic dance

Date in () alternative date in case of cancellation due to bad weather

UJINA NIJIHIROBA FLEA MARKET

REGULAR NIGHTS

DUBWAY f every 3th Friday f Bar Edge / Dub

f Moto-ujina Park

SACRED SPIRITS

f March 14 & 15, 28 & 29 / April 18 & 19 / May16

f (almost) every Saturday

Go to gethiroshima.com/events for more details about these

& 17, 30 & 31

f Cafe Jamaica, ¥1000 (incl 1 drink, 2 if enter before 24:00)

and many more events.

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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ART

Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art

Hiroshima Prefectural Art Museum

Hiroshima Museum of Art

Well-designed building in Hijiyama hilltop park. Interesting

One of the largest art museums in Western Japan with a

Monet, Van Gogh, Picasso and many more works by great

sculptures and statues are dotted around the outside of the

permanent collection of over 4,800 works which include

modern European painters on display in this small, but

museum that can be viewed for free. Special exhibits and

Japanese nihonga painting, traditional Asian art crafts,

perfectly formed museum, very close to Hiroshima Castle.

the exhibits from the museum’s own collection displayed on

1920s and 1930s art, displayed on rotation. Right next to

Visit on a weekday and you may well have the whole place to

rotation along various themes. Map C p.29 8

Shukkei-en Garden. Map A p.28 13

yourself. Map C p.29 11

10:00-17:00 Admission to the collection exhibition: Adult

09:00-17:00 Admission to the permanent collection Adult

09:00-17:00 Admission to the general exhibition: Adult

¥370, College students ¥270, High school students, seniors

¥510, College students ¥310, High school students and

¥1000 Seniors ¥500 College & high school students ¥500

¥170, Junior High School and younger free

younger free .

Junior high school and elementary school students ¥200

082-264-1121 http://www.hiroshima-moca.jp/

082-221-6246 http://www.hpam.jp/

082-223-2530 http://www.hiroshima-museum.jp/

Admission until 30 minutes before closing. Special exhibition charges vary and usually include admission to permanent collections. Closed Mondays (unless National Holiday when closed the following business day).Hiroshima Museum of Art and Hiroshima Prefectural Art Museum open everyday during special exhibitions.

EXHIBITIONS

Cosmos: The world of Kitaoji Rosanjin

Hiroshima Prefectural Art Museum Isoe Tsuyoshi: Genius of Spanish Realism

April 18-May 31 Closed Tuesday (except 5/5 when closed

Tsuyoshi Isoe ‘Nude on newspaper’ (1993-94)

Kure Municipal Museum of Art

Osaka-born Tsuyoshi Isoe (1954-2007)left for Madrid at the age of 19 to study oil painting in the midst of the tide of Realism, characterized by detailed representation through close observation, that was sweeping Madrid. During his 30 years in Europe, he painted under the name Gustavo Isoe, producing highly acclaimed realistic works and garnering high praise from one of Spain’s leading realist artists, Antonio Lopez Garcia. After his return to Japan, Isoe took a position at Hiroshima City University in 2005, but passed away two years later at the early age of 53. This exhibition displays 100 works including some of his earliest to many of his masterpieces.

5/7) Adult ¥1000, College & HS Student ¥600, JHS & Elementary Student ¥400, Seniors ¥500 Ushijima Noriyuki Exhibition Onomichi City Museum of Art March 14-May 10

Tsuyoshi Isoe ‘Sardine’ (2007)

Painters who Draw Nights – Candlelights and Tenebrism Fukuyama Museum of Art Until March 22, 2015 Adult ¥1000 Under 18 free Omura Koyo Exhibition Fukuyama Museum of Art February 2-April 5 ¥300 (Under 16 free)

Tsuyoshi Isoe ‘Quinces’ (2004-2005) Normandy: Estuary of the Seine Hiroshima Museum of Art February 28-April 12 Adult ¥1300 College & HS Student ¥1000, JHS & Elementary Student ¥600 The Principles of Art by Genpei Akasegawa

Gallery G Map A p.28 5

March 23-May 24 Open until 20:00 on Fridays

Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art

Adult ¥1200 College & HS Student ¥900, JHS & Elementary

March 22-May 31 Adult ¥1030 College & HS student ¥720,

Private art space opposite the Prefectural Art Museum which

Student ¥400

JHS & Elementary Student ¥600

holds weekly free exhibitions by local artists, designers and artisans. 082-211-3260

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kanak Delicious, healthy, additive-free Indian food right next to Peace Park. Excellent lunch sets. Indian pub-style atmosphere at night with many a la carte dishes to choose from as well as curry meals. Curry lunch sets from ¥780 Free refills of rice/nan at lunch Vegetarian, vegan and Halal food. A la carte Kids sets ¥500 ~¥590 (ex tax) Party room available

Lunch 11:00-15:00 (L.O. 14:30) Dinner 17:00-22:30 (L.O. 22:00) 082-236-7308 Map C p.29 [B-2] 12

Artcafe ELK 2nd floor cafe near Peace Park with good sandwich lunches, drinks, vegetarian menu. International exchange spot. 9:30-21:00 /22:00 (Fri. and Sat.) 082-247-4443 map C p.29 [B-1] 2

Media Cafe Popeye Hondori / Ebisu-dori So much more than Internet in 2 city centre locations Internet access (PC), Free soft drinks, Shower rooms available (additional charge), Overnight stay OK Open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week Popeye Ebisu-dori map B p.28 2 Popeye Hondori map C p.29 [C-1] 3

Cafe Cinnamon Closed Tues. Charming little blue cafe worth seeking out for great food and drinks. 11:30-15:00, 18:00-22:00 Closed Tuesdays 082- 942-3424 map C p.29 [A-2] 4

Cafe Lente

Chamonix Mont Blanc

Escape the Miyajima crowds at this beautifully designed cafe. Wooden terrace. Great view of the floating torii gate, especially after dark. 11:00-21:00 Closed Tuesdays Located along the water inlet between Kiyomori Shrine & Miyajima Aquarium.

Venerable kissaten since 1955, now with a British connection.

Choi Choi Ya

Galley

Shiho serves Hiroshima tsukemen, yaki-ramen (fish stock base), side dishes and drinks in a relaxed atmosphere. Eat, drink or both at the counter or a street-side table. Can get quite lively late at night. 20:30-03:00 Closed Sundays & hols that fall on a weekday map B p.28 7

3F casual French bistro overlooking Namiki-dori in the center of Hiroshima’s shopping district. Open for lunches, dinner and in between.

Graffity Mexican Diner

Karşiyaka

Homemade Mexican and US style foods in this family run-diner.

11:30-13:20, 18:00-24:00 (L.O. 23:00) 082-243-3669 map C p.29 [C-2] 10

Kebabs and authentic Turkish dishes prepared by a Turkish chef near Peace Park. Vegetarian and Halal diners catered for. Belly dance shows at weekends. 11:30-14:30 (L.O. 14:00) 17:30-23:30 (L.O.22:30) 082-247-2202 map C p.29 [B-2] 16

Kemby’s+ Taps & Tapas

MABUI Hiroshima Oyster Bar

Budd runs a full bar which includes craft brews on draft and bottled ales, complimenting tasty tapas in the evenings. 17:00-01:00 Closed Wednesday 082-249-0630 map B p.28 17

08:00-24:00 082-241-2726 map B p.28 6

Lunch 12:00-14:00 Cafe 14:00-18:00 Dinner 18:00-24:00 (L.O. 23:30) 082-243-3669 map B p.28 9

Fukuromachi Super fresh oysters from Hiroshima waters and overseas - raw, fried, steamed, smoked and more! Well presented seafood, meat and Italian dishes. 11:30 - 24:00 (L.O 23:00) open everyday 082-249-2490 map C p.29 [C-2] 18


Namaste Hiroshima Station

Organ-za

Delicious Indian, Himalayan and vegetarian dishes on the 6th floor of the Hiroshima Station building.

Bohemian queen, Goto Izumi's avant guard center of operations. Great decor, food, drink and bizarre stage shows.

11:00-15:00, 17:00-22:00 (L.O.) 082-568-0045 map A p.28 21

Tue-Fri 17:30-01:30 (L.O.), Sat 11:30-01:30 (L.O.) Sun 11:30-23:30 (L.O.) Closed Mondays 082-295-1553 map C p.29 [A-1] 23

Otis!

Pasta La Vista

Eclectic and ethnic music. Tex Mex, vegetarian, vegan and gluten free dishes available.

Stylish eatery near Peace Park which prides itself on its many pasta types & local ingredients. Smoke free at lunch. Vegetarian options.

Mon-Sat 12:00-22:30 (L.O.) , Sun, hols 16:00-22:30 (L.O.) 082-249-3885 map C p.29 [A-2] 24

Lunch Mon-Fri 11:00-15:00 (L.O. 14:30) / Sat, Sun, hols 11:00-16:00 (L.O. 15:30) Dinner 17:00-24:00 (L.O 23:30) map C p.29 [B-2] 25

Plus Minus

Porta Porte

Top quality yaki-niku on 1 F in retro Japanese surroundings, and stylish, modern lounge bar upstairs. Good range of local sake.

Authentic Napoli style pizzeria with a view of the park out back.

17:00-06:00, Bar 19:00-06:00 082-236-8810 map B p.28 26

11:00-15:00, 17:00-22:00 (L.O.) Closed Mondays 082-249-8010 map B p.28 27

Robatayaki Jindaiko

Rojiura Teppan Kotaro

Long running establishment opposite Ebisu Shrine serving grilled meat, fish and vegetables.

Young grill master Kotaro serves delicious seasonal dishes & drinks just off Peace Blvd.

17:00-23:30 (L.O.) 082-246-4873 map B p.28 28

17:00-02:00 (L.O. 01:30) Closed Tuesdays 082-249-1953 map C p.29 [C-3] 2F 29

Saishoku Kenbi

Shabuzen

Completely vegetarian menu (some dishes contain eggs & dairy) 1500m from Nishi Hiroshima Station. Tofu based, hearty daily set lunches and veggie ramen too! 11:00-16:00 (lunch until 14:00, L.O. 15:00) Closed on Tue 082-271-3770 map p.26 [A-1] 30

Hearty and social, shabu-shabu is healthy, cookit-yourself dining treat for meat lovers. Plates of high quality beef or pork with plenty of veggies, rounded off with noodles. 17:00-23:00 (L.O. 22:00) Open everyday 082-240-1700 map B p.28 32

Sprout

Tinto

Delicious extensive menu. 5 min walk from peace park. Pasta, pizza, fish, meat and veggie dishes.

Mediterranean dining bar open all day, with some great drink deals. Home made pizza.

082-294-2019 17:30-1:00(L.O.). Lunch Fri. Sat. Sun. Holiday 11:30-14:00(L.O.) - Closed on Wednesday map C p.29 [A-1] 33

11:30-24:00 Sun-Thurs, 11:30-01:00 Sat, Sun & hols 082-546-0007 map C p.29 [B-2] 34

Tokaichi Apartment

Warung Matahari

Quirky smoke free cafe in Tokaichi. 짜850 set lunches served 16:30.

Excellent Indonesian cuisine prepared by Balinese chef Surasna. Vegetarians catered for.

11:30-23:00 (lunch L.O. 16:30) Closed Tuesdays 082-231-9865 map C p.29 [A-1] 2F 35

17:30-22:30 (L.O.) Closed Mondays 082-240-2082 map C p.29 [B-3] 36

Zucchini: bar and cucina

Bar Edge

Lively, reasonably-priced tapas restaurant-bar next to Peace Park.

Small underground club with a good sound system.

11:30-15:00 (L.O 14:00) 17:00-24:00 (23:30 L.O) 082-546-0777 map C p.29 [B-1] 37

082-248-8146 map B p.28 3


Bon Voyage

Cafe Spice

International bar with counter and 2 discount rooms in which to chill. Nice cocktails and some great food too.

Relaxed SE Asian atmosphere amid the buzz of Nagarekawa

Mon-Thur, Sun 18:00-02:00, Fri, Sat 18:00-04:00 082-249-2380 map B p.28 4

18:00-03:00 082-246-7934 map B p.28 5

Chinatown

Centre Point

Well worn, but large dance venue in the depths of Nagarekawa, rented out by local promoters for live and club events. Check local listings for events 082-247-5270 map B p.28 6

Susu’s bar: Interesting cocktails, DJ’s spinning at weekends, good source of local nightlife info.

Eki-mae Chelsea Cafe

Koba

Drinks, tapas and meals. Good whiskey selection. Carp baseball games live on big screen.

Rock loving BOM is one of Hiroshima’s most welcoming and entertaining bartenders. He whips up some very tasty food too.

Tue-Thur 20:00-03:00, Fri, Sat 20:00-05:00, Sun 20:00-01:00 map B p.28 7

Monday-Saturday 17:00-03:00, Sunday 17:00-24:00 Tel/Fax 082-263-4330 map A p.28 8

18-00-01:30 (L.O), Closed Wednesdays 082-249-6556 map B p.28 10

La Luna

Mac

International Food Bar with good music to relax, in comfortable surroundings Events every weekend

Legendary Hiroshima watering hole with massive CD collection.

22:00-late Closed Sundays 082-241-6788 map B p.28 11

18:00-late Closed Sundays 082-243-0343 map B p.28 12

Mambos The place to dance to Latin music in Hiroshima. Salsa lessons every day and party nights every Friday and Saturday. 20:00-01:00 082-246-5809 map B p.28 13

New King Trendy and Pink, 2F bar run by the guys behind local hip men’s underwear boutique.

Molly Malone’s

21:00-05:00 082-247-4487 map B p.28 15

Tues-Thurs 17:00~01:00 / Fri 17:00~02:00 / Sat 11:30~02:00 / Sun + Nat Hol 11:30~24:00 / Closed Monday / 082-244-2554 map B p.28 14

www.facebook.com/mollymaloneshiroshima Hiroshima’s authentic Irish pub. Great beer, great food, great service. The place to watch Premier League soccer.

Southern Cross Fun, spacious, smoke-free Kiwi-Aussie themed bar serving up beers and wines from New Zealand and Australia, meat pies, sausage rolls, steak sandwiches, beef/lamb burgers and other pub favorites. Check online for details of their live music events, theme parties, DJ nights, quizzes, big screen sports and special drink deals.

www.facebook.com/southerncrosshiroshima 18:00-01:00 082-236-3396 map B p.28 16

The Shack Bar and Grill Spacious American-style bar amd grill on the Hondori covered shopping street near PARCO Department Store. Great for groups. Import bottled beers, week night drink deals, big menu and free pool table. Sun-Thurs 17:00-01:00, Fri & Sat 17:00-03:00 082-504-4170 map B p.28 17


Tropical Bar Revolución

IACE Travel

Nobu’s popular 8F hangout, friendly and relaxed complete with balcony.

Competitive prices, regular offers, and English speaking staff make IACE a popular choice for travellers.

18:00-03:00~04:00 Closed Sun, hols map B p.28 18

082-240-2051 map C p.29 [B-1] 1

Outsider Book Nook/Global Lounge

Travel With

Used English books to buy or exchange. Internet, cafe & meeting place. Lunches daily, bar from 19:00 Fri & Sat. Mon-Thurs 11:30-21:00 Fri & Sat 11:30-23:00, Closed Sun, hols 082-244-8145 map C p.29 [C-1] 2 1

A.G. Tanaka will get you a great deal for your international and domestic travel needs. 10:00-20:00 (Sat, Sun, hols until 19:00) Closed Wednesdays 082-544-7718 map B p.28 3

Yamatoya Produced in limited quantities yet reasonably priced, a bottle of Hiroshima's top quality local Japanese sake makes for a great souvenir. www.piconet.co.jp/yamatoya/ 09:00-22:00 Closed Sundays 082-241-5660 map B p.28 4

Cleo Hair International

Laff Hair Design

Pamper yourself in this state of the art beauty salon on the 9th floor of the PACELA shopping center.

Ippei’s skills and service have made him a huge hit among Hiroshima’s international community.

10:00-20:00 082-511-2470 map C p.29 [B-1] 1

082-504-7636 (English line) map C p.29 [B-1] 4

Dormy Inn

Hana Hostel

Great location. Single ¥6000 Double/Twin ¥10,000 (tourist discount)

“Hybrid inn” with knowledgeable staff near the station.

082-240-1177 map C p.29 [B-2] 1

082-263-2980 map A p.28 2

Hotel Flex

Ikawa Ryokan

Stylish riverside hotel, rates include breakfast Singles ¥6825, Doubles ¥11,555≤

082-223-1000 map A p.28 3

Cozy, home-like atmosphere. Japanese and Western rooms. Coin laundry. S ¥5,940≤ / Twin ¥9,720 / Tr ¥14,580 Quad ¥17,280 / Breakfast ¥756 www.ikawaryokan.net info@ikawaryokan.net 082-231-5058 map C p.29 [A-2] 4

J-Hoppers Hiroshima

K’s House

Hiroshima’s first backpacker guesthouse. Beds from ¥2300.

082-233-1360 map C p.29 [A-2] 5

Backpacker hostel 8min walk from Hiroshima Station. Dorms from ¥2500, Japanese style rooms (1-4 people) and ensuite western style rooms (1-3 people) ¥2700-¥5500 per person. Free Wi-Fi. 082-568-7244 map A p.28 6

Reino Inn

Washington Hotel

Centrally located “Art & Culture” Hotel. Families and small pets welcome. Dorms ¥2700, singles from ¥3700 (¥2800 per person for 2 ppl), family rooms.

Hospitality, amenity and security right in the heart of Hiroshima. All rooms equipped with great bathrooms and separate lavatory. WiFi in all rooms

082-236-7003 map C p.29 [B-2] 7

http://washington-hotels.jp/hiroshima/ 082-553-2222 map B p.28 8

(Peace Park Hiroshima)


“Hiroshima’s famous oysters” Oyster Marriage 10800yen

Kanawa Kakifune Oyster boat

(include tax) 10 Row Oysters and choice of bottle of wine, sake or sparkling wine.

PEACE PARK Lunch 11:00-14:00 (L.O.) Dinner Monday-Saturday 17:00-21:00 (L.O.) Sunday & National Holidays 17:00-20:30 (L.O.) Ote-machi 3 chome, Naka-ku, Hiroshima-shi (082-241-7416) Just south of Peace Memorial Park Map p.29 [B-2] 15 KAISEKI Oyster course (lunch and dinner) ¥5,400 Various course menu available from ¥5,400

HIROSHIMA STA TION 6F

Kaki Meian Oyster Bar

ASSE Kanawa

One fresh oyster from ¥280 (+ tax), we have a lot of different kinds of oysters.

11:00-22:00 (L.O. 21:30) 6F Hiroshima Station ASSE Building (082-263-7317) Raw oyster & wine set

map A p.28 14

¥1300 (+ tax)

Enjoy a set including steak from Takehara (Hiroshima Pref.), tempura and oyster rice for ¥290 0 (+ tax)!

11:00-22:00 (L.O. 21:30)

6F Hiroshima Station ASSE Building (082-263-3296) map A p.28 13

Kanawa Hiroshima Airport A AIRPORT

HIROSHIM

3F

those from the Compare Hiroshima oysters with 0 (+ tax) ¥250 plate er Oyst ! rest of the world

08:00-L.0 20:00 / 3F Hiroshima Airport (0848-86-8330)

English menus and ma jor credit cards accepted at all locations. www.kanawa.co.jp


goto izumi's deep hiroshima

Words by Goto Izumi / Photos: Judith Cotelle translation by Paul Walsh

“Outsider District” ol. Osuga( 大 須 賀 ) v5 Just behind the post office next to Hiroshima JR Station (See Map A p.28) hides the hitherto little known district of Osuga. I say hitherto, as Osuga has recently developed into a wonderful ramshackle island off the shore of the mainstream. It is to my mind the most vibrant district in Hiroshima right now. Osuga is still, however, off the radar for the most part and even most people in Hiroshima are unaware of its existence never mind its charms. In the shadow of ongoing redevelopment that is stripping away the character of the area around Hiroshima Station, here in Osuga, the soul of post war, backstreet Japan remains.

Visiting Osuga is a bit like experiencing Tokyo’s Sangenjaya, Shinjuku Golden Gai and Koenji areas all in one go. These 4 narrow alleyways lined with little businesses are a gathering place for salarymen on their way home from work, jobless old geezers, young punks, artists and craftsmen. The congested mix of night time watering holes and quirky little shops and cafes is perhaps Osuga’s greatest charm. So, enough chat, it is now my pleasure, dear reader, to introduce you to a smattering of the jewels to be discovered in Hiroshima’s “Outsider District”.

Tachi-nomi Padokku (ぱどっく) What: Tachi-nomi bar where you stand at the counter to drink and eat fried things on sticks. Menu: Beer ¥300 a can, kushiyaki ¥100~ a stick. Warm, welcoming and relaxed. Smoking OK. In the Osaka style, double dipping of your kushiyaki kebabs is a no no. Cheap!

Organic Wine Bar Tariq What: Bar and salon Menu: Wine or organic tea ¥500. BYO food OK. Salon run by bellydancer and palmist Yuka-san. No smoking. English OK. Yuka is the perfect person to quiz about the ins and outs of Osuga. Have a nice chat while playing dress up!

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Japanese sake bar Maru (丸) What: Tachi-nomi sake bar Menu: Artisanal jizake Sake ¥400 a glass, Belgian beer ¥1500 a bottle High quality small batch sake from Hiroshima and other regions at reasonable prices. Limited menu of light Japanese dishes that go well with the sake. No smoking at the counter. Toilet and smoking area on the second floor.


Stamina cuisine Kazu (和) What: Tiny izakaya with a very “deep” menu Menu: No prices, but inexpensive. We were charged ¥2500 for two bottles of beer and two of Kazu’s signature 3 dish oden courses. This 34 year old eatery was the deepest spot we hit on our tour of Osuga. Smoking OK. Run singlehandedly by a lovely lady in her 80s. Incredible interior design sense! It pays to be aware of some ground rules concerning the menu. For example, in the case of the ¥100 oden egg (tamago) 1- First, you must eat the white of the egg. Whatever you do, DO NOT eat the yolk. 2- Smash up the yolk (but DO NOT eat it) and pass your dish back to the owner. She’ll then fill it with a variety of other “interesting” ingredients and hand it back to you. Now you can eat. 3- Finally, she will fill your bowl with a tasty broth to be downed in one. Accomplish this and you are worthy of the title “Osuga Master”.

Nishino kutsu mise cobbler What: Shoe repair Menu: Resole ¥1000~ Run by handsome and talkative cobbler Nishinosan. Here you can not only get your favorite shoes brought back to life, but can visit a beautifully designed gallery space on the second floor where accessories created by independent designers are on display and for sale. All very stylish, just looking is a treat!

Zetsumetsukishu (絶滅危惧種)1F Wakaba (わかば)2F What: Vintage and indie designer clothing, shoes and accessories on the first floor and used manga, book and nick-nacks store upstairs. Menu: All kinds of stuff at all kinds of prices! 1st floor is packed with the kind of crazy stuff dreamed up by indie designers that cannot be found anywhere else in Hiroshima. 2F selection will delight manga freaks, plus lots of Japan subculture books.

TIPS

• Fancy a daytime tipple? There are about 3 places to drink from lunchtime. • Serving a mainly after work crowd, many places are closed by 11pm. • Quite a few places are closed Thursday

Osuga really is the Hiroshima Station area’s last remaining oasis. I hope from the bottom of my heart that it will forever continue to be so. It is also my fervent desire that the seeker of deep Hiroshima will give this deepest of districts a try! GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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Words / Photos: Judith Cotelle

Reggae probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Hiroshima, but the posters and flyers for reggae events you may see around town are testament to an active scene.

Hiroshima has hosted many high profile reggae artists, including some of legendary status such as Lee Scratch Perry, Jah Shaka, Horace Andy and Yellowman. But there are also many homegrown sound systems, selectors and promoter. Here, I introduce representatives of three styles of reggae - roots, dancehall and dub all active in Hiroshima since the 1990s.

We start at the beginning with Hiroshima reggae originals, respected and loved by all, BIG STONE. BIG STONE first met back in 1992 in a Namiki-dori club run by a Buddhist priest. That might raise an eyebrow, but reggae in Japan is a real monastic enterprise. In France they make booze, in Japan they spin platters! Borrowing the owner’s name, O-ishi (大石 or “big stone”), they started with 7 members under the name Papa Big Stone Lab, carting a small but powerful sound system down the stairs to Bar Edge where, once a month, they would build a nice musical wave record by record until dawn. 23 years of sharing their love of reggae. That’s a long time, I ask, “Have you always got along?”

Pincher D

“Yes, 23 years without any quarrel!” says Conquer D. People find that hard to believe says Dr Pain. Pincher D goes on to explain, “Everyone in the scene gets along well. Hiroshima is somewhat unique in that there is no rivalry between the different sound systems. Everybody supports and appreciates each other.”

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Left to right: Conquer D, Dr

Pain, Pincher D

So how did a punk florist, a metalhead buddhist priest and a skater deep into ska culture find their way to reggae?

and became a resident DJ. Of his moniker he says, “I chose “Pain” because the origins of black music are the blues and jazz, music that tells of people’s sufferings.”

Selector and MC Pincher D, who spends his days running Mikawa-cho flower shop Gorgon,started DJing when he was about 23 years old after returning from a trip to London where he immersed himself in the London punk scene. “DJ culture was quite new in provinces, and you’d hear all kinds of genres at parties that pulled in big crowds. Very exciting times! My first real encounter with reggae music was watching “The Harder They Come” with Jimmy Cliff. I liked the rude boy style of his character. From then, reggae became a passion that has never left me. I love the contrast between tough or sad lyrics and laid back rhythms.”

Conquer D, named for the Delroy Wilson song Conquer Me, came from the skate scene and was deep into ska music from an early age. Again, O-ishi’s club was pivotal. “I was working in a skate shop and O-ishi would provide the speakers for our events at the skate park. He gave me a job as a bartender and I started to play records occasionally. That’s how I met Pincher D and Dr. Pain.”

Dr Pain is the head priest of a Buddhist temple in Hiroshima. Tiring of the commercial direction that 1980s heavy metal was going while finishing his Buddhist studies, he got hooked on reggae after being introduced to various styles of the sound at bar Rub-a-Dub in Kyoto. On his return to Hiroshima he sought out a reggae club his classmate, who happened to be Mr O-ishi, had opened

“The selectors play soul music, oldies and mellow tunes with a few reggae tunes thrown in. We wanted to bring that atmosphere back to Hiroshima,” says Dr Pain. Sugar & Spice is held at Centre Point 7 on the 4th Sunday of every 2nd month 7pm to 12am at Centre Point, a place they think really suits this kind of mood.

Big Stone don’t limit themselves to just reggae. Their Sugar & Spice parties, inspired by Sunday night parties they’d been to in the Rae Town neighborhood in Kingston, Jamaica.


On their dubplate buying trips to Jamaica, Conquer D says that although the first visit was a bit of culture shock, “People are really friendly, laid back, and I didn’t find it as dangerous as people say. I have excellent memories of trips there”. “Of course,” he goes on, “We are there to buy dubplates and they want to get the highest price possible, so it takes some negotiation.”

“One time, a guy in a studio started to play with a knife while staring at me. I struck some silly samurai poses and made like I was swinging a sword. He burst out laughing and gave me a high five.” When I ask them about their dapper style, Pincher D says, “Well, I haven’t always dressed up the way do now. I even used to have dreadlocks,

but before going to Jamaica my wife said I’d look ridiculous! I play a lot of early 80s reggae and a lot of those guys used to really dress up in a kind of chic mafia style, so it started from there, but gradually I created my own style.” “Don’t get us wrong,” laughs Dr Pain, “We don’t call each other up before going out to know what the others are going to wear. But it usually matches.”

PROGRESS formed in 1994. Two of the original eight members remain: Founder Doggy-T and Key Rock. More influenced by artists like Sizzla or labels like Jammy’s, the atmosphere and audience at a Progress event is quite different from a Big Stone party. They’ve invited many big reggae stars such as Buju Banton, Terry Linen and David Rodigan to play over their heavyweight sound system built from scratch. Doggy-T is also resident DJ of Easy Skanking Tuesdays at Centre Point and often plays outside Hiroshima: Okayama, Osaka, Kyushu. “Some older friends introduced me to reggae when I was 18. It was the first music to really move me. I would go to Big Stone events, and they have been a major influence. I learnt a lot from them and inspired me to create my own sound system. At the beginning we thought we’d progress little by little and we’d find a name later. Eventually we kept the name Progress as it suited our approach.”

Key Rock

In the early days, we had to create a local dancehall scene ourselves. Then the boom came, peaking in around 2006. Things have slowed since then, but

Doggy-T

the more invested ones are still here. People like Big Stone for whom I have a big respect or Dribbla in the younger generation. Reggae has become “normal”, music for masses. These days, nobody is surprised to hear reggae in a cafe, restaurant or a shop whereas it was totally unknown at the beginning.” On reggae’s stronghold in Japan, he has no hesitation. “Osaka! I think Osaka and Jamaica have a lot in common. You can feel the same kind of energy, Kansai dialect is a bit to Japanese what Jamaican Patois is to English. People from Osaka are particular, they’re in a hurry and laid back at the same time, talk easily to strangers, they remind me a bit of Jamaicans.” Doggy-T has also made several trips to Jamaica and has made dubplates featuring big names like Sizzla and Ninjaman. He says prices range from a hundred to a couple of thousand US dollars. “Some artists like Super Cat, Jimmy Cliff, Bitty McLean refuse to record dubplates, but sometimes make exceptions… It doesn’t always depend on the amount of cash.”

“They’re always late... One day in Jamaica we were supposed to record with two artists together. One came on time, but the other was over half an hour late. When he finally showed up, the first one went back to his place for more than half an hour, just to piss off the other guy!” The soundclash is another important part of reggae culture. Sound systems play one after the others, for shorter and shorter lengths of time until they go song on song. ”We see how the audience react, which sound system makes the people shout more and create the most exciting atmosphere. But we don’t only fight with music. It’s also a verbal contest, we have to intimidate the opposition. sound systems get eliminated until only the winner, decided by the audience, remains. I’ve never won a sound clash, but I like the atmosphere and getting feedback from the audience and other participants.” Interestingly, sound clash world champions are the Japanese Mighty Crown. Japan has also come out on top In another arena too. Junko Kudo was the first non-Jamaican dancer to be crowned “Dancehall Queen” back in 2002. The Dancehall Queen Setouchi 2015 contest is co-organized by Progress and will be held at Mugen on March 28. GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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Dub evangelist Kumi Yasuda aka Jah93 (9 and 3 can be read “ku” and “mi” in Japanese) is a real rollup-your sleeves daredevil. “I fell off my bike on the way here,” she says matter of factly as we sit down. A fresh scar graces her hand, from a soldering iron. “That’s me all over”, she laughs. Jah93’s dub epiphany came when she first came face to face with Fukuoka’s Red I Sound System. “It was like an electric shock! Dub is a music you need to experience live. It’s a physical experience. But it also has history, culture, a message. From whatever angle you approach it, this music is amazing. It’s addictive. I’ve even heard it’s good for your health!” Beginning as a selector with the Jah Love Is Sweeter sound system, founded by Roots & Kazu-chang and Mighty Massan, she soon started tinkering with sound system equipment. The melodica (she now owns four) followed, and Jah93 currently plays with local band Dub Zombies as well as solo.

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She says inspiration comes from the sounds around her. She grabs a beer bottle and taps the table. “This sound, for instance, gives me ideas. The wind in the trees too. These kinds of sounds inspire me, along with the groove of the track.” Social media has aided collaboration with kindred spirits far and wide. A new project involves Mexican singer Sis Zari who got in touch via Facebook. Chazbo, owner of the UK Roots Temple Jah93 imprint reached out via MySpace (remember that?). He’d send over tracks and she’d send back melodica and synth parts, mostly for fun. “My English is quite limited, but it doesn’t matter. Our conversations are more musical than verbal.” These conversations resulted in Jah93’s first 7 inch single, “Silent Prayer”. Jah Love Is Sweeter host DUBWAY every 3rd Friday at Mugen. On my visit, the sound was really powerful; drinks were bouncing off the bar.. “Like I said, dub is music you really need to feel with your whole body!”

In a style that harks back to the 80s and dub luminaries like Jah Shaka, Jah Love Is Sweeter play facing their imported preamp. The result is that, most of the time, they have their backs to the audience. “To my mind, we are actually playing in phase with the audience. It’s also easier to focus and I get a lot of energy feel from the vibrations coming from the back.”


FOOD

yakitori Words / Photos: Matthew Mangham

Yakitori is immensely gratifying to eat. You all know this. All of you. And yet how often you will insist on drifting listlessly through your all-too-brief lives, perversely refusing yourselves the elemental pleasure of meat and vegetables grilled over charcoal on a wooden skewer, itself ideally suited to the picking of teeth or postprandial sword fights with table mates. Shame on you.

Let's set about remedying this distressing state of affairs right now. You can find yakitori everywhere. In fact, in preparing this mercifully short piece I found several restaurants that would rather not be publicized at all. Yakitori is that good. Publicity? Pffft! Pbbrrrttff!

UKON Tel: 082-241-5101 Address: 4-8 Horikawa-cho, Naka-ku

over an hour or more start to finish. Don’t come if you want to get in and out quickly, or order à la carte. Just put yourself in the master’s hands, and everyone will finish the night happy.

Hours: 17:30-23:00 (last order 22:00, or when the charcoal

baseball team, the Carp. The walls are hung with jerseys, player photos and even old cleats. If you’re at all into this kind of thing, it’s a lot of fun. One of the staff, mostly student part-timers, will trot out a plate of cabbage leaves with ponzu to start you off.

burns out) Closed Sunday Map: B p.28 2

Located at the edge of Hiroshima’s drinking district, just past the Kirin Beer Sign on Chuo-dori and on the left, Ukon occupies a former ryokan. The same family still runs the place, but as it grew more difficult to keep a traditional Japanese inn open they changed business models. With counter seating and tables alongside what remains of the ryokan’s courtyard garden, the first impression is made by the pleasant profusion of antiques, old cabinets, wall hangings and pictures filling the place floor to ceiling. If you ask, they’ll bring out folders of wonderful black and white photos of the ryokan in its heyday. You’ll have plenty of time to thumb through them. Your best move is to order the ¥4700 set, and then settle in. The family is slightly reserved, but friendly. The master, who grew up in the old ryokan, trained as a Japanese chef but focuses here on yakitori. It’s very good, and appears as its cooked, stretching

We had perfectly sauced beef, shiso-wrapped tsukune, prawns, oysters and clams, in addition to sashimi, ginkgo nuts, mushrooms and more. Lots of sake and shochu on hand as well. This was some of the best yakitori I’ve had, and well worth the time and money. I’ll definitely be back, ideally with visitors looking for a certain atmosphere.

CARP-DORI (Nakano-tana branch) Tel: 082-248-8989 Address: 5-15 Tatemachi, Naka-ku Hours: Mon–Sat. 17:00-24:00 Sun & National holidays 17:00-23:00 Map: B p.28 1

A long-time Hiroshima fixture, Carp-dori is decidedly more casual than Ukon, with three floors of seating and a much more rough and ready approach. Many of the dishes sport the names of players for Hiroshima’s beloved, long-suffering

Here, you’re free to order what you like from a picture menu, washing it all down with beer after beautiful beer. Keep an eye on your tab though. More than once I’ve had a nasty shock at the end of the night. There are cheaper places. There are better places. But the location between Hatchobori and the Hondori shopping arcade makes Carp-dori convenient and the entire mood of the shop seems designed to put travelers at ease. No fear of fumbling the etiquette in a place this relaxed.

GetHiroshima / Spring 2015

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Matt’s Moment

Well, that’s over. For now. After vanishing for two years down the rabbit hole of the Japanese entrance exam process, our 12-year old daughter has suddenly been returned, more or less intact. The drama attending these examinations is as much a part of Japanese spring as blue sheets beneath cherry trees, but I’m still asking myself if it was worth it.

My daughters are growing up in one place. One house, by one river. I didn’t. My schooling took me through American public schools, an international school in the Middle East and a boarding school outside Aspen, Colorado during the cocaine boom years. All of these, with varying clarity, colored my thoughts about school for our girls.Knowing our daughters would grow up here, I chose early not to foist an identity on them. They’d speak and read English and know something about my country, but otherwise I’d get out of the way and let them be Japanese. I have former British and American classmates who haven’t seen Saudi Arabia since 1983 and still, in the last gasp of their forties, spend their days wondering aloud where they’re from, posting links to videos with wistful titles like “Where’s Home?” Many of the Arab students fared worse. I know more than a few people, from different backgrounds, who arrived at adulthood speaking two or more languages but without full native ownership of any. Of course every place is different, as is every child. And maybe I’m kidding myself about sparing my daughters anything. On the other hand, for a long time and to some extent even now, the Japanese cram school system seemed like one of the most unambiguously bad ideas ever floated. A childhood should be conducted outdoors, roaming the woods and risking life and limb on a dare. The emphasis on rote learning also rankled, for reasons too frequently voiced to need mention here.

50\

Except that there are no woods near our house, and my daughter doesn’t like poking beneath stream banks for poisonous snakes or setting things on fire, more’s the pity. As for the things cram schools teach, historical periods, major figures, performance of certain arithmetic functions or writing advanced kanji, there’s a great deal to be said for simply sitting down and learning it. You can come along and sift in the finer-grained material later. More importantly, my wife (and her friends, and many of my co-workers) speak about cram school with obvious nostalgia. For them it was hardly the unalloyed horror I imagined. It’s expensive and time consuming, and I agree with arguments that it can be socially divisive, that it places excessive pressure on some students. But here were people talking fondly about special exam season snacks, with coffee beans for a late-night edge and names playing on the Japanese words for “pass” or “win.” They reminisced about days when results arrived by telegram, simply announcing sakura saku or sakura chiru (the cherry blossom has bloomed or fallen). They formed lasting relationships in cram school, and learned lessons in discipline, competition and organization that still elude me. Wasn’t this, in part, precisely the Japanese childhood I promised to let our girls have? There were other concerns, some more practical than others. Many neighborhoods have excellent public junior

high schools. We’re less lucky in that regard and, at any rate, it would only mean postponing things. Weighing any misgivings against my wife’s experience, my regard for her intelligence and judgment (formed in Japanese schools) and what it would mean to keep our daughter out of cram school, I folded like a cheap suit. Just stood to one side biting my fingernails, watching, which is where every parent ends up anyway. And the girl did very well. She sat at her desk and put in her hours. Three weeks ago, when she learned she’d been accepted to the school she’d set her heart on, I was treated to a shout of exhilarated triumph unlike any noise I’ve ever heard her make. Her mother just wept and laughed. It’s a good school. She’ll enjoy the next six years, and she’s earned them. America doesn’t offer 12-year-olds many rites of passage any more. The lightness and assurance I see in my daughter these last few weeks suggest that she’s been through something I don’t entirely understand. Every family has different circumstances, different sets of expectations. I want to emphasize that I’m not advocating for anything in writing this. I’ll never know if we made the best set of choices we could have. I’m just enormously relieved that it worked out the way it did. And, already, coiling in knots at the prospect of doing it all again in a few years with our second child. Words: Matthew Mangham


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Gethiroshima Mag Spring 2015  

The best of Hiroshima in English, 4 times a year. Hiroshima attractions, festivals and events Hanami cherry blossom viewing Cycling Etajima...

Gethiroshima Mag Spring 2015  

The best of Hiroshima in English, 4 times a year. Hiroshima attractions, festivals and events Hanami cherry blossom viewing Cycling Etajima...

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