Fifteen Amazing Japanese Footbridges

Iya Valley Bridge

Unmissable Japan has catalogued Fifteen Amazing Japanese Footbridges. Since we’ve only visited one of these, we’ll simply rip off their work with a link here.

Part of the fascination of Japan is not only that these bridges are preserved, but that they’re actively maintained, in many cases open to traffic (or at least tourism), and they’re catalogued and featured in regional tours. Nana and I have been on the Iya Valley Bridge (pictured above) as well as a couple of other suspension footbridges not included in the article, as part of package tours (although Nana has been overheard shouting イヤー、イヤー while crossing them).

Kintaikyo, photographed by Kenta Mabuchi

Japanese being who they are, the bridges collected in this article represent more than antiquity — in many cases they are unique engineering solutions to local circumstances. See for example Nagare bridge, whose bridge surface is designed to float in order to avoid damage to the pylons during a typhoon, and the Tsujun aqueduct, which irrigates higher adjacent land via siphons.

Everything’s in boxes

Shawn guards the moving boxes

Tokyo was hit with 23cm of snow last night, so Nana didn’t want to go out shopping for dinner. Moreover, all the restaurants canceled their delivery service for the evening. So when I left the office, Nana asked me to pick up dinner on the way home.

The trains were running slowly and were much more crowded than usual, but eventually I got home with an avocado salad, gyoza and shumai. As Nana pulled the groceries from the bag, she exclaimed, “We don’t have enough plates!” Of course, we had plates to eat on, but most have already been packed up in boxes for our house move at the end of the week.

We made do. But at the end of the meal, as we both clutched our full bellies and surveyed the leftovers, a new problem arose. “We don’t have any tupper!” Nana exclaimed. She ended up wrapping the leftovers in plastic bags.

Today, after an eventful day, I wanted to enjoy a nice drink of shochu blended with hot water. I looked for a suitable cup — you guessed it. In the boxes. I’m drinking from my coffee mug now.

Nana and I just went to the kitchen for refills, and now the shochu carton is empty. “We have more,” Nana said, opening a cupboard and finding it empty.

When we got there, the cupboard was bare
When we got there, the cupboard was bare

Yes, even the booze is in boxes …