Visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum

I finally could go to the hotel and leave my stuff before I going for my walk around the city center, but not without lunch, after that stressed episode I really needed to eat something, so I went to the first restaurant I saw! Italian! Shame shame… Though, it was a very interesting experience, Italian with Japanese ingredients, the veggies weren’t the most obvious ones, and of course it doesn’t taste the same. I was polite and I said it was good, but it wasn’t… I guess that’s how Japanese people feel when they go to Europe then eat at a Japanese restaurant. Though I was finally ready for the Peace Memorial Park, or so I though…

Peace Flame in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
Peace Flame in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Elma and Max strongly advised NOT to go to the museum straight away, so I went for a walk first, through the Memorial Park, the A-Bomb Dome and a bit around for some photo shooting, and then I went to the museum… Oh, what a strong experience! One thing is knowing that the Americans drop an A-bomb in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, another thing is being there and see and read more than that. It is a very depressing experience, I honestly almost cried and some people were too close to cry. The devastation was supreme, the city was reduced to ashes in a few seconds, hundreds or thousands of buildings were gone! And the stories… I’ll leave you a few links to read if you want to know more, but I bet you won’t look at paper cranes the same way again.

I was still jet lagged, and I didn’t rest much either, I tried to stay awake until late, but usually I had to wake up early as well, so the resting part was almost none. I went back to the hotel to check in and I had a two hours nap. Yep shame on me again, but when I am on vacations, I can do whatever I want.

Visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum

Previously in Tokyo, I wrote on couchsurfing Hiroshima group that I would be in town and I invited people to have a drink with me, just one guy replied, a Spanish guy that had been in Japan two times before. We agreed to have dinner together that day, so, after my nap I went for a few night photo shoots and then I met with him for dinner and a drink afterwards. Really nice guy, and a Japan-lover, it isn’t every one that goes three times to the same country, on the other side of the world, for vacations! He speaks a bit Japanese and he is quite interested in Japanese culture, it was nice to meet some one like him, one of the pleasures of traveling alone, getting to meet interesting people. After that, back to the hotel, tomorrow’s going to be another long day…

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By Gil Sousa

Portuguese expat in Cork, traveler and food enthusiastic.

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