Monday, July 18, 2005

Castle Town

Out side the walls

Did I mention that Kumamoto city is a castle town? I believe I did in a past post, but now you get to see it for yourself! Kumamoto castle is one of the most impressive castles ever designed. In fact, there was no possible way to breach it without the aid of canon fire.

side view

The beautiful rock walls were all hand placed, and curve out for defensive purposes. The main purpose is nobody can scale them. Also latters become difficult to use since the curve extends the length needed by three times. If you can't get right up next to the wall you're always in view, which means the bolders, arrows, bullets, and stuff being lobbed down at invading forces was unavoidable. If you ask me, it's a smat design.

How do I get in?

Japanese people even say the beauty and design of Kumamoto castle strikes them with a sense of awe. I met a business man from Tokyo who said that visiting Kumamoto castle made his heart race and give him a feeling of pride. This is the remaining mark of a once great civilization and there is still a sense of honor and nationalism which springs up when visiting such places. I assume it would be the same for Americans visiting the U.S. Capital, Washington Monument, and other key land marks which define our history and who we are. However, back in Montana there is sadly a lack of dissapointing. Although we have cows, lots of them, no castles.

I like Japanese castles better than European ones; mainly because the architecture strikes me as more beautiful, artistic, and inovative. However, castles in general are just plain cool.

If you want in you'll have to get past these guys.

These fellows stood outside and threatened to stab me numerous times if I didn't pay the entrance fee. Currently the main section of the castle is being rebuilt. As the castle is considered a national treasure and museam, a small entrance fee is require, just like Suizenji park. These fees are put to good use, and the main part of the castle burnt down in the latter part of the seventeenth century. It is being remade and construction will finalize in 2007! Until then enjoy the pics of the main watch tower, it is beautiful don't you think?

Ah! I finally get to see the castle. It's big.

After climbing to the top of the castle and looking out over the city, Sayaka and I came back down and decided to tour the grounds. But before we left we had to walk through the pak outside the castle walls. Turing around we waved goodbye to the castle.

Good bye castle! See you next time.

(Special note: These pictures were taken in July of 2005, not 1999. My digital camera has a bad habbit of reseting the date everytime I take the memory card out)


Astrid said...

So what are you gonna do with all these stories and pictures? Are you going to get them published? They sure are fascinating and your pics are of great quality!

Tristan Vick said...

Good idea!