If it’s good enough for Scarlet Johanssen (“Lost in Translation”), then it’s good enough for us! That was our motto as we visited the visually beautiful Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto.
Our mission was to learn about peace, but we also explored the history and culture of the cities we visited. In Nagasaki, that included Suwa Shrine. The rain didn’t dampen our explorations too much, and we managed to get a group photo during the only 30 seconds when it wasn’t raining (much) during the day.
Several of the study tour participants brought lots of snack foods with them because they weren’t sure they’d like Japanese food. In the last few hours, they tried to divest themselves of the untouched reserves so they’d have more room for souvenirs. Here’s a sampling of the delights that made them forget all about those crackers they packed.
Teachers from the FCCEAS Japan Peace study tour meet with 9th grade students from Mihara Junior High School attached to Hiroshima University. This program, like our study tour, is funded by a grant from the US-Japan Foundation. Students from Mihara Junior High School learn to talk about peace in English, and escort teachers through the Peace Museum and Peace Park. At the end the students sang “We Are the World” for the visiting teachers. One study tour participant shared that the most moving part of the day for her was standing in the Peace Museum with a 13-year-old Japanese boy looking at a photo of a 13-year-old boy who was severely burned in the atomic bombing.
The group at Ryozen Kannon in Kyoto. Left to Right: Ron Eisenman, Anna Zay, Jen Wagner, Rob Hallock, John Frank, Meg Dillon, Dana Patterson, Kim O’Neil, Lisa Gibson, Lisa Tilley, Jessica Buchta, Duane Johansen, and Liz Spiro-Carman.
We visited two elementary school peace museums in Hiroshima. Here we are in front of Honkawa Elementary School with our new junior high school friends who were also visiting from a town near Hiroshima. Left to Right: Liz, John, Anna, Duane, Rob, Lisa G., Kim, Lisa T., Ron, Jen, Jessica, Meg, Dana.
Each participant contributed 100 (more or less) paper cranes to our group contribution of 1,000 (more or less) paper cranes at the Sadako statue in the Hiroshima Peace Park. After hanging the cranes and registering our contribution, we took a group photo to commemorate our offering.
We had the great privilege to meet with Masahiro Sasaki, the older brother of Sadako, in Fukuoka. He gave each of us an official Sadako Legacy badge and charged us with helping to spread the word about Sadako’s message of “omoiyari no kokoro”, or “loving heart.”
The Japan Peace Study tour on the ferry to Miyajima, Left to Right: Lisa Gibson, Jessica Buchta, Meg Dillon, Dana Amani Patterson
Left to Right: Ron Eisenman (background), Kim O’Neil, and Rob Hallock
In Miyajima, Left to Right: Ron, John, Meg, Anna, Kim Duane, Meg, Jessica, Lisa G., Rob, Dana, Lisa T., Liz