The Very Last Tour in Heisei Era, 29 April 2019, UENO Park

Thanks to 3 guests who participated in the tour from Australia and Iran. The weather was cloudy.

This was in fact the very last tour in Heisei Era. As mentioned in other articles, Japan has its own calendar year name by Emperor reigning era, so called Gengo. Until this year’s April is called Heisei. From 1989 till this year was Heisei 1 to 31. Then from May,  Gengo is changed to Reiwa. This year is Reiwa 1.

Until today’s tour, UENO Park course was conducted on irregular basis as trial. But we have decided to conduct it as regular tour, twice a month, every other Sunday afternoon. That is our new plan in Reiwa era.

One of attractions of UENO park is collection of museums along with temples, shrines, a zoo and greenery. There are 6 museums within the park premise.

Tokyo National Museum, exhibiting arts and archaeology, which is like Musee du louvre in Paris or Great Britain Museum in London,

national museum

National Museum of Nature and Science

science museum

The National Museum of Western Art, mainly painting exhibition, which is like Musee d’orsay in Paris. The building was designed by Swiss architect, Le Courbusier and designated as the World Heritage site.

western art

Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum

metropolitan art museum

The Ueno Royal Museum

royal museum

Museum of Down Town Customs, which exhibit old time common people’s livelihood.

In addition to these, just near the park, only a few minutes walk from the park is Kyu-Iwasaki-tei Gardens, former residence of family who owned Mitsubishi Conglomerate, which exhibits real remain of the old time Japan’s high-society life.

The residence consists of western style mansion and traditional Japanese house. It was built in 1896. Visitors enjoy gorgeous exterior and interior using costly materials. The family no longer reside there since after the second world war ended. Mitsubishi Conglomerate was dismantled for democratisation and redistribution of Japan’s wealth. The family had to give up their huge area and house of their residence. Now it is owned by Tokyo city.

So it was like Japanese version of “Gone with the Wind”, the world renowned novel and the film based on what happened to Southern plantation owner family during American Civil War period.

During the time the family resided in the house, social inequality of Japan was huge. The family hired 50 servants and the residence had an independent generation system while poor commoners sometimes had to sell off their children to earn living.

That should not happen any more. Museums are where you can learn the old things to know what to do for the better future. We should strive to create better future.

Life in Heisei era ends in April and then new life in new era starts.

Like famous words in the film “Gone with the wind,”

“After all, tomorrow is another day.”

Please come and join us on new days in new era!

(Posted by Masa)

 

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