2019年04月01日

'Yokohama Shokin Ginko' (Yokohama Specie Bank) was Japan's one and only bank focusing on trade finance and foreign exchange before the Second World War.

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This special bank , which was built in Yokohama City in 1880, originally was a quasi-national bank for Japanese companies to carry out overseas trade just with cash. And it was one of the largest banks of this kind in the world before the Second World War, however GHQ liquidated this bank right after the Second World War. Thereafter this bank revived as a commercial bank and became a part of MUFG Bank, one of the four megabanks in Japan. The picture shows the former head office building build in 1904, which stands in the heart of Yokohama City. This old building survived the Great Kanto Earthquake in 1923 as well as the fierce air raids during the Second World War, and was designated as an important cultural asset in 1969. This prestigious building is a place for Kanagawa Prefectural Museum of Cultural History.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 13:24 | Suburbs of Tokyo | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2018年12月27日

'Ohya-ishi' stone is mainly used for building materials, as it is easy to cut and is resistant to fire.

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Ohya-ishi stone is formed from volcanic ashes settled on the bottom of the sea. It is reserved in Ohya town, Tochigi Prefecture, and 120 quarries were running in the golden age in the 1960s. However the number of them has dwindled now to one-tenth of that time. As shown in the first picture, open-cut mining is found there though, underground mining is the mainstream now to get the better quality of stones. The second picture shows the interior of the mine which already shut down the operation. These ruins are opened to the public as a museum named 'Ohya-shiryo-kan'. As the temperature deep inside the ruins is stable all the year, from 5 to10 degrees Celsius, it was used as a warehouse for rice, other cereals and fermented foods. In recent years, it has become a popular place for a filming location and event site.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki

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posted by masahisa at 12:54 | Suburbs of Tokyo | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2018年08月24日

'Kakitagawa' spring group features the most amount of discharge among the uncountable number of springs at the foot of Mt. Fuji.

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Japan's tallest peak Mt. Fuji is a conical volcano, so the meltwater and rainwater sinking into the mountain gush out on the surroundings after 20-30 years. Kakitagawa spring group is the largest among them, with 100 tons of discharge a day, which is on a world-wide level. The spring water through the huge natural filter boasts of outstanding transparency and is the best drinking water. The temperature of it is stable all the year, 15-18 degrees. This spring water forms Kakitagawa river 1.2 km in length, which is one of the shortest rivers in Japan and joins other river to flow into the Pacific Ocean. An esplanade over the springs is well developed.
The picture shows one of the places where the springs are gushing out. Two circles, big and small, are the traces of water intake pipes for a bygone factory.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 16:01 | Suburbs of Tokyo | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする