Monday, May 29, 2017

A Second Walk around Omori / 大森の散歩 第二弾

The first time we took a walk around Omori was way back in 2009. As we had more time to explore this time, we walked around quite a bit more than that first visit. Of course we adventuring in Omori, the first place to check out is the Magome Bunshimura Street (the Magome Writer's Village) walking trail.


The faces of the Magome Writer's Village included Japan's top writers and artists.


Omori Station around 1919.


Omori and the area around Sanno is where many of the writers and artists gathered to talk amongst each other.


Many writers would gather at the home of Shiro Ozaki and his wife Chiyo Uno and was often called "Magome Station"


After the Great Kanto Earthquake, a new fad had begun. Dance halls became popular and the men and women started to wear western style clothes and also had their haircut in similar fashion. In 1921 (Taisho 10), mahjong become very popular and many mahjong cafes had opened. The writer, Kazuo Hirotsu also frequented the mahjong cafes.

People playing mahjong / 麻雀カフェの風景

The women of Magome Writer's Village such as Nobuko Yoshiya and Hideko Kawbata also cut their hair short and were called Modern Girls and shocked the residents of Magome Mura.


At the beginning of the Showa Era (mid-1920s), the next fad following mahjong cafes were dance parties.

During the Magome Writer's Village era, it was also an era where women were quite active. From left to write are: Hiroko Katayama, Chiyo Uno, Hanako Muraoka, Nobuko Yoshiya, and Ineko Sata.


In the year 1931 (Showa 6), among the writers, sumo became a subject of much discussion. The Omori Sumo Association was created. The sumo dohyo (ring) was made at the back of the Ikegami Honmon-ji Temple where sumo bouts were held.

Sumo tournament / 相撲大会

We decided to check out the Tenso Shrine which was at the top of the hill where the Bunshi Mura Writer's Street was.


Before reaching the top of the stairs, I also stopped here at the Fushimi Inari Shrine.


Hand Purification Basin / 手水舎

Hondo / 本堂

I love Japan with its mix of churches, temples and shrines.  Old and new, Western and Japanese style. Definitely never a boring moment when going out for a walk. This is the Omori Fukko Church and Sanno Community Church.


A piece of art explaining the plant around it.


Local scenery in Omori / 大森の風景

Omori Shopping Mall [Milpa] / 大森商店街 「ミルパ」

Omori Otori Jinja / 大森鳳神社

So, do you think the ramen shop is out of business as the sign is not only upside down but backwards as well?


Public art / パブリックアート

More public art / これもパブリックアート

We took a short break for lunch but as always, food posts will be separate. But just in case you wanted to know, we had lunch at a Big Boy restaurant. Yes, they still have those in Japan.


We came upon another shrine after lunch so of course we had to explore. This is the Omori Sanno Hie Shrine.


Hondo / 本堂

Sanno Inari Shrine / 山王稲荷神社

Sanno Inari Shrine / 山王稲荷神社

Hie Shrine / 日枝神社

We didn't stop in here but this is the entrance to Naritasan Enno-ji Temple.


And then we came upon another interesting site. Also one of Shinagawa Ward's 100 Scenic Sites. We stopped by the Omori-kaizuka Shell Mounds


Okay, so its mostly a public park.


Statue of Edward S. Morse.


So, who was Edward S. Morse. He was the American man and professor who first discovered the shell mounds in Omori and is also the site for the first joint scientific investigation of the end of the Jomon Era. Shinagawa Ward became a sister city to Morse's place of birth - Portland, Maine in the United States.


The shell mounds are a time capsule for the Jomon Era.


Oh no, I've also become a trainspotter!


We then left the shell mounds and stumbled upon yet another one of Shingawa Ward's 100 Scenic Sites. We stopped by the Kashima Shrine.


Entrance to Kashima Shrine / 鹿島神社の入口

Cats always seem to be welcome on temple or shrine grounds.


3 Stone Statues / 来迎院石造念仏講供養塔 三基

Our last stop on today's walk was this tea house called the Shotekian.


Suikinkutsu / 水琴窟

In case you don't know what a suikinkutsu is, it is a feature of a garden in which a buried earthen jar that makes sound when water drips into it.


Foundation for an old style house / 竪穴住居跡

Guest at the tea house / 茶屋のお客様

It was quite an all day adventure but well worth it. You always find new things when you walk around unfamiliar neighborhoods.


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