Most Japanese castles were surrounded by moats filled with water, traversed by bridges in front of the gates.
However, since the castle was also a symbol of the lord’s power and status, although the bridges were the first to be destroyed, they were built with great attention to detail, some of them being painted and decorated with quite expensive ornaments. A good example is this bridge of Matsumoto castle, featuring traditional giboshi ornaments…
Maybe the oldest type of water crossing, the stepping stones bridge is often used in Japanese gardens to create a landscape as close to the nature as possible.
The stepping stones are always carefully selected, sometimes brought from hundreds of kilometers away and assembled in such a way that the visitor is forced to step carefully, to slow down and to observe the water flow, the shape of the stones, the vegetation…
The Japanese pagoda evolved from the Buddhist stupa, and some pagodas still use architectural elements borrowed from the stupa, like this tahōtō pagoda of Chion-in, in Higashiyama, Kyoto.
Above the first roof there’s a mound-like structure called kamebara ("tortoise belly"), finished with white plaster. If we ignore the covering, the remaining architecture is actually a stupa, protected against weather by the roof…
Inspired by eboshi, a type of headdress worn by the Shinto priests and, on special occasions, by the higher class, the kabuto (helmet) photographed here is called simply eboshi kabuto.
The height of the eboshi was expressing the status of the wearer, the tallest versions, naga eboshi, being reserved for the top ranking samurai and aristocrats. Similar to eboshi, the tall kabuto in the photo belonged to a powerful and well known daimyo, Kato Kiyomasa.
However, by the 1980s Nakano lost its luster, surpassed by the much more glamorous Shinjuku or Ikebukuro. Nakano Broadway started transforming into the flourishing manga-anime center that it is today in 1980, when the Mandarake company opened here its first second hand book store. Over the decades, the success of the book store attracted many other similar shops, and today Nakano Broadway is dominated by manga, anime and games stores, following Akihabara as the second otaku paradise in Tokyo.
In Higashiyama, Kyoto, there are two very steep and quite narrow streets leading to the famous Kiyomizu-dera, the Ninen-zaka (which means “two years slope") and the Sannen-zaka ("three years slope"). They are almost always crowded by tourists coming and going to the temple, and with a lot of tempting window shops lining the streets, you have to be extra careful not to trip on the stairs.
In fact, there’s a scary local legend that says that if you stumble and fall on the Ninen-zaka, you may die in the next two years, while if you stumble and fall on the Sannen-zaka, you will die in the next three years…
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AKB48 group coming-of-age ceremony 2016 | AKB48 Daily
【抱負】3人は報道陣の取材にも参加し、新成人の抱負を語りました。 アイドル大好きな、まほほん（山口真帆）は「あんにんさんが、どの角度から見てもお綺麗すぎて…あぁ」とか言い出し、ご本人に若干引かれていました…。 #NGT48 pic.twitter.com/mRFhOKwAH4.
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