Peace March Journals 平和行進の日記

July 26, 2014 – Sofia Wolman

Well, this was definitely the longest, hottest day so far, but we’ve made it to Hiroshima Prefecture!

After a hearty breakfast of (mostly) leftovers from the barbecue at Michiko-san’s home, we were off from Kasaoka!

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Breakfast at Michiko-san’s!

I was happy to again see my young friend Kazuki, who had drawn me a wonderful picture of his family and me; what a prized possession!!  He was my March buddy for the first part of the day, and we had a great time together, often entertained by small fish in the flowing water beside the street, and by Fukuda-san’s fantastic singing, which keeps the energy up despite the weather!

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Kazuki-chan and me; Photo Credit Tomoki Ishihara

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Peace memorial along the road

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School kids cheering us on!

After a (short!) lunch at a women’s organization, we headed back out, and before we knew it we made it to Hiroshima Prefecture!

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Lunch at a women’s organization

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Crossing into Hiroshima!!

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Michiko-san leading the March

Soon after, we were greeted by a large group – the Fukuyama contingent – and after a ceremony we parted ways with the familiar faces of Okayama/Kasaoka, and set off on this new and final stretch of the March.

It was really sad to say goodbye to these friends we’d made!  I didn’t expect to feel so emotional, but even with the strong language barriers that exist, it’s amazing what a bond I came to share with the people whom I’d marched beside, particularly such friends as Nakao-san, and Shiga-san, the Okayama-through-Marcher, who was really crying hard as we said our goodbyes.

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Manisha, Fukuda-san, myself, and Tomoki-san

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Me and Nakao-san

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Manisha, Shiga-san, and myself

But, the march went on, with new but strong energy and a big group of us, with Nakajima-san, a junior high school English teacher – joining as our interpreter and coordinator of the Fukuyama portion of the March.

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Hiroshima!

In the evening we had a short time to get ourselves cooled and cleaned off before driving over to a social work office where we were hosted for a dinner featuring some traditional foods from Fukayama.

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Manisha and I enjoyed the company of Mahoko-san (our interpreter) and her very friendly mother and daughter (Manami, who braided my hair after dinner).  It was a festive time, including speeches by guests, and I was invited to sing Imagine – a favorite among the marchers!

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We also saw a man’s hat, that had dozens of pins from past Peace Marchers attached, and I was amazed to see that this year’s logo is much like a mural in Derry, Northern Ireland, where I studied for a semester during university!

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He’d taken the cap off to pass around the table

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This year’s Peace March logo reminds me of this mural in Derry, Northern Ireland!

So, it’s the end of a long day, and sleep calls!  Onwards!

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This entry was written by swolmanpeace and published on July 29, 2014 at 7:38 pm. It’s filed under Peace Movement. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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