Nine Weeks and a Day Hiroshima Now and Then

If there ever was a conflict inside toss it aside and start again. What has been seared inside your mind forget about it and begin again. There is no time to look back anymore times they are a changin’ went the song. If you want to keep up you have to adapt and take the opportunity if you can or if you want to. But don’t regret it later if what you wanted left you. 

Loss has an inexplicable effect on the psyche. The charred remains of what once was burned that deep into the soul of this city. I walked around the memorial museum moved by what I saw of the remains that were documented with objects from that time. No one could have expected that in the next few moments a force unimaginable would be unleashed that instantaneously changed the landscape for ever. Even today with our technology and facts the mind will fail to grasp the scope of the event. As I watched some children paying homage to those who lost their lives with songs and ceremony I wondered if they were just paying lip service to what once happened. I at my age and experience can somewhat comprehend the effects having studied the forces that made the power that was unleashed. But to be that person who suffered with the effects wether acutely or years down the line is something else. 

It was a bright sunny day as I made my way to the Peace Memorial Museum and Park just a short walk over the bridge. I can see the greenery from my room it’s right by the river that curves softly by its eastern side. I had been up for a few hours now  taking care of necessities for a clean existence. I had plenty of sleep and have had my coffee enema. Going to see something like this requires a bit of preparation. This is something of historical importance and must be treated with respect. At least that’s how I feel about it. I kind of knew what to expect but it is still unexpected.  

There were a lot of busses already parked by the museum. School kids were all lined up and getting ready to enter the building. I scoped out the entrance and made my way towards it trying to time my entrance right. The cost to enter is minuscule and the building itself is modest but appropriate for the Exibition. There is a part of it that is under renovation and should be opened by twenty-eighteen. 

The entrance to the exhibits consists of an image of the plume that rose on August eighth nineteen forty-five at eight fifteen seconds after detonation. By this point over a hundred thousand people no longer lived. Many more would die in the next few days suffering from the effects of their exposure. In the coming years more would succumb to the effects most meticulously studied while others who fled overseas understood the cause of their pain. 

The pictures told the story that words can’t. The clothes and artifacts on display are the non living reminders of what happened. The evidence of the heat in the bubbles of tiles that once formed a roof. The steel doors that once were square but the impact of the blast deformed its shape. There was the famous shadow left by someone who’s body shielded the stone and left a mark that persists until today. There were pictures of the burn marks as well as specimens extracted after the fact years down the line. It was a presented matter of factly without prejudice as they speak for themselves. What conclusion would you have? 

The bright sunny day contrasted sharply with the darkness of those long past days. The crisp blue sky and the gentle breeze helped to move the darkness away from the inside. The hope in the young faces walking by paying homage to the kids who died. They sang songs at a memorial for a girl who was exposed so young and who’s story touched a million hearts. Her belief that wishes could come true if enough folded cranes she could produce. Through her pain she persisted hoping that she could heal the pain that was inside of her but to no avail. The story like her cranes took off and flew and spread like the cancer that grew inside of her. Except that this spread was of a positive nature. Her story to this day is still remembered so as to serve as a kind of beacon to us in this present day when grumblings of war are so easily played. 


 There were many people there today and I wonder if it’s like this every day. Small groups coming to this place to see what happened back then and hope that it doesn’t happen again. I guess that’s why there are so many kids. Their young minds are impressionable still. Their emotions can be swayed so that they could see the horrors that can be inflicted even if it wasn’t on a whim. 

I kind of wondered away from the park having thought too much about what happened I kind of needed a smoke. You can’t just light up anywhere walking through the park so I walked towards a designated spot. There were a few people pouting in the air. It looked like there was an apartment fire in a building over there. One woman was a bit frantic talking on the phone while I took the opportunity to take a picture and then a video on my phone. I heard the trucks coming with their sirens blaring loud. The police came over too to help manage the crowd. In the span of fifteen minutes all kids of stuff happened. You can see it too over here

I even got to talk to a reported and I told her I’d send her the tape so after the commotion died down I made my way back to the hotel. The video was long and it took forever to upload. I had a couple of naps waiting for the prolonged process to finally stop. In the meantime I read some articles listened to some shows as well as some songs. I thought about my past and my future. I know I have a job but no home to speak of. I can see the constraints that I’m about to enter and the pressures I will face. What will happen I don’t know yet or even how I’ll feel. I can’t make the decision until I really go there. 

With the video safely up in the cloud I decided to venture out again while the good light shine bright. I made my way to the fortress that was built long ago now faithfully restored to its former glory. Not much remained after the bombing the timber burned away. Only the stone was left. What stands now is historical insofar as its shape. It speaks to the glory days of feudal Japan. 

The grounds on which it stood were quite beautiful. They are surrounded by everything new. The whole city was leveled and what’s here now is the new Hiroshima. This thought is something I’ve had since I got here. This place is transformed except for the few buildings that dot the landscape amidst the new forms. 

I wondered around and then sat by the river that seems to be dry. I watched the sunset and watched the people walk by. This is a quiet city for the most part. There is a strange serenity here. The mountains line the surroundings serving as a backdrop a limit to the inevitable sprawl of a city. I know this well. The buildings are narrow and built up tall. 

It was time to get ready I decided I should see the nighttime city. Felling clean and fresh after a shave I walked out the door. First Forsome dinner BBQ Japanese style fought my attention mostly because it was the only menu I could understand. I entered the premises and figured out the order then proceeded to cook my food to my own preference. It’s kind of like the Korean style I had except this is indoors. The grill is a bit different but some of the condiments are the same. It was a delicious dinner and after I ate I tried to look for a place to have a drink. I was looking for something some place to entice me but I wondered bewildered by what was around me. 

The area itself is kind of strange. There are many gents walking around in an inebriated state. There are many parlours with sexy women’s pictures on the outside. I guess these are all geisha houses with advertised rates. Some costing more than others. I wonder what you get. I was hoping someone would ask me inside. But as I walked by they fell silent allowing me by. I do t think it’s sex they’re selling it’s probably like a strip bar. The women on show teasing the money out of your pockets door. Some that were showing men out to the cabs waiting outside were dressed in kimonos. I just found the whole scene strange and hoped to find a place where men and women interact in a more normal way. There were few if any women out at this point. So I decided to go home to compose this prose and later research what I saw. 


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