Friday, October 30, 2009

Oita ~ Beppu#2

I have long loved strolling around back alleys. Maybe I got more into it when I went to Okinawa for the first time. Walking in tiny little streets, which are for the locals there, I greeted people and cats, photographed things old and rusty, some of which seem no longer used and you wouldn't have the slightest idea what they were for, having kind of mixed feeling of relaxation and calm excitement, and a little uneasiness. My photos from travels consist of such weird, unfamiliar, and at the same time common things so explaining to peolpe where I took those photos seems meaningless sometimes. Anyway I LOVE back alleys.

Just strolling in backstreets is fun, but if you have a chance, it's good experience to have a person guide you around who knows much about the history of the area and geography. Such people will take you to places outsiders usually don't go or even find, and knowing little stories and origins of old things and places adds to the pleasure of strolling even more!

After the lovely lunch we join "Meisters of backstreets in Beppu". They take us to and show us really funny things; for example parking lots no car seem to be able to enter, a very very narrow door, etc. And they guide us to tiny hotsprings where local people alone visit, old, western-style architectures and tell us of their history. Interesting! I almost forget that we are now in the downtown of a modern city: it seems as if we were walking in a town 50 years ago.
There are new buildings and houses around, but out-of time things in back alleys make a way back to old days. You can experience backward time travel on backstreets:)

window : @Axolotl, on a backstreet in Beppu / Oita


  1. Definitely easier to read the English post on this topic ;)

    Actually, I think your very best photography comes from these back alleys, forgotten and tucked away in time, that you describe here. These images are powerful, mysterious, and tell a story on their own without you even needing to explain them (or where you took them).

    It's very inspiring for someone like me, who right now is caught up in the here and now, the modern, the shiny, the colorful, the digital ;)

  2. Thanks for reading, Jonathan:))
    And thanks for your encouraging comment!
    You understand very well that I love taking photos of back alleys, especially in a foreign coutries people are more familiar in such places (of course, not all people; some are very shy;)) , and that's where I meet lovely cats!! And I am happiest and most excieted when shooting such scenes.

    You live in such a lovely place, where you have not only now things but old things,I guess, and different people of different origins. I envy you!
    In fact, this outing was inspiring for me too, who live in kind of a monotonous place.