Friday, 10 November 2017

Barks in Japan- Hiroshima

Shin was three and riding his tricycle when Little Boy detonated one mile away at 8:15am. He died of his injuries that evening. His father buried him with his beloved tricycle behind the family home.
Shin and his sister. Photo from the Museum

Forty years later, his father disinterred him and moved his remains to the family plot. He donated the tricycle to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.
Photo from the Museum

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum is absolutely unmissable if you travel to Japan. It is a thoughtful and well laid out collection with multilingual signs. Many aspects of the atomic bomb are explored, from the dark science behind picking which city to target, through the harrowing aftermath and on to subsequent peace activism throughout the later 20th century.

The Museum is set in a commemorative garden, with a reflective pond, memorials, and a flame which will only be extinguished when there are no more nuclear weapons. It is adjacent to ‘the atomic dome’, an iconic ruin which thankfully wasn’t pulled down.

Memorial to the children

The bomb detonated about 150m behind the A-dome

A block behind the dome is the ‘hypocentre’, 600m below where Little Boy detonated in the sky above. It is in an unremarkable back alley by a parking lot.
The hypocentre 

Hiroshima now is a bustling metropolis again. It tastefully commemorates, but doesn’t linger in, the past. That fucking tricycle. Never again.