The Peace March is currently in Shiga Prefecture. By this time, has been around 45 days since the Peace March started on May 6. Tanaka-san & Takeda-san (our through Peace Marchers for the Tokyo-Hiroshima Route) already walked through Tokyo, Kanagawa, Shizuoka, Aichi and Gifu. Many people from different countries, prefectures, and organizations have joined them. There is still more to come.
The handover from Gifu Prefecture took place on June 16. Hiroko Hori-san passed the International Youth Relay banner to Nishida Chihiro-san – a young lady also from Japan. Ms. Chihiro Nishida joined the Peace March last year as interpreter for a foreign Peace Marcher. She eventually joined the World Conference Against A&H Bombs in Hiroshima a few months after.
This year, she took on the challenge of helping complete the International Youth Relay March and decided to walk for 5 days through Shiga Prefecture. Thank you very much Nishida-san! For the next few days, Nishida-san will walk us through Shiga with her words. Following Nishida-san, the through Peace Marchers and the people of Shiga, let us continue reading about the Peace March!
Second Day: From Hikone to Azuchi
International Youth Relay March was handed over to me from Hori Hiroko-san of Gifu Gensuikyo yesterday (June 16) and we started marching from Hikone City Hall today. It was cloudy, but I think it was a good weather for this Peace March. We walked through Hikone City, Toyosato-cho, Aisho-cho and Yokaichi.
Though I was born and raised in Shiga Prefecture, I visited these towns for the first time and was surprised to see a single-car train at a desolate station. So I enjoyed the march watching scenic views. In Aisho-cho, all town office staff welcomed us and gave us a strong and encouraging message for the abolition of nuclear weapons, which made me so pleased.
Another thing that makes me so happy is that I am making new friends through this Peace March. I am very grateful for this opportunity to be able to meet with many people of various generations and different backgrounds in life, who share the same desire for peace.
(Translated by Ako Shiraishi)