Hiroshima came across as a very green city and it was hard to imagine that the city was ruined, no, it was burnt to dust during the war. It then became well-known in all our history textbooks, each with a different story to tell. However at the Peace Memorial Museum, there was only one main point to convey and that was “War is bad and it causes misery to parties involved”. I might be over simplifying the war but that clearly was the message. There was no finger-pointing involved whatsoever.
For the Japanese students, visiting Hiroshima on a field trip is the norm. Peace Studies is part of their curriculum. We managed to catch a group of students reciting a pledge and offering their handmade origami paper cranes to show their support for world peace.
In the park, you will also come across the Children’s Peace Monument. That’s where the Japanese students usually gather to pledge for world peace.
The monument was erected after the death of Sadako Sasaki, who was only 2 years old when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. She was an innocent victim of the war who suffered the deadly after effects of the dreadful nuclear weapon.
During her stay in the hospital in 1955, she aimed to fold 1000 paper cranes based on an ancient Japanese folklore that by doing so a wish would be granted. Unfortunately, she never got to complete all 1000 cranes herself. She died at the tender age of 12.
As we were walking through the park, we were approached by a Japanese primary school boy who wanted to interview us in English. He was on a field trip and had to interview foreigners on their views on Hiroshima and practise some English. In return, we were given two paper planes. Quite sweet, wasn’t he?
Directions to Children’s Peace Monument
Nakajima-cho Naka-ku Hiroshima City , Zip code 730-0811
- [By public transportation]
City train No.2 bound for Hiroden-Miyajimaguchi or No.6 bound for Eba from JR Hiroshima Station and get off at “Genbaku dome-mae”station
Directions to A-Bomb Dome:
- 1-10 Otemachi Naka-ku Hiroshima City , Zip code 730-0051
[By public transportation]
Approx. 15 min. by tram bound for Eba, Miyajimaguchi from JR Hiroshima Station and get off at “Genbaku Dome-mae”tram stop