Photographer's Note

"I thought I'd never go to Hiroshima," were amongst the first words I jotted down in my little diary as I rode the Shinkansen from Osaka to the town ravaged by an American nuclear bomb in 1945. "Why would I? The biggest wound on Earth. A name forever tainted by the sheer evil the west proclaimed as advancement, development, science."

I followed the wise words of an old Japanese lady I met on my first night in Japan, while bathing in a Japanese hot tub at one of the best Youth Hostels I have ever been to. She saw that I was worried and full of doubt and all she said to me, after I gesticulated to show my lack of direction, was Hiroshima, with a big smile.

The typhoon was about to hit town. Osaka was bathed in milky white winds. So was Hiroshima as I arrived there, less than an hour and a half after I'd left Shin-Osaka.

As the skies seemed to clear out, I headed out for lunch and beyond, not expecting any of what I saw and even less all of what I experienced.

I'm not much of a city person and my choice to head down South instead of going for Tokyo was mainly based on that fact. I usually enjoy walking where people never go, I love empty paths, deserts, wide open spaces. Yet here I am, sitting in Hiroshima, totally and absolutely head over heels in love with this town.

There are no words to describe all of it. The people, the places, the light, the weather, the air, the smells, everything rings home like no other city in my life ever has. I don't usually care for really hip kids yet here they make me smile. I'm not that fond of crowds, yet here I enjoy them. I don't like shopping, but here my Heart laughs as I walk past the busy small shops on wide shopping streets.

As if it wasn't enough, last night, as the sun started to set, I saw the most amazing colours I have ever seen in my Life. The wind was blowing hard, the typhoon clearly somewhere not that far, but not close enough to drench the whole place. Suddenly, everything lit up as if from within, as if each particle in the air was alight with a glowing colour. I snapped away as I could, totally frustrated at my inability to re-transcribe what was going on into a digital photo. I missed my film camera left in the hotel room as well as any skills that might have helped.

This picture is a faint re-creation of what went on in Hiroshima last night.
The blue was actually really dark and the clouds really pink. All of what was earth (including buildings) were as if lit from within with a golden pink light. It might sound as if I was simply walking around with a pair of odd eyes, but I was only one of many taking picture after picture of what was going on. It was... magic.

I have no idea how this picture comes up on your screen, but trust me, it was a million times better in reality. I'm just trying to share a little love ;-)

To those amongst you who take the time to leave a comment or criticise the picture, Thank You. Your words are always important and they go straight to my Heart as well as that part of my small brain that is busy thinking before pressing on the shutter release, even when I fail to reply.

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Additional Photos by Julia Leijola (leiju) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 435 W: 84 N: 523] (1697)
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