Jizozaka, Yokohama, c. 1910.

1910sHistoric DistrictYokohama
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Jinrikisha on the Jizozaka, leading to the Bluff, Yokohama, 1907.

“They set off and a breeze blew about them as they rattled along side by side, the straw mushroom hats of the runner bobbing between the shafts of the rikisha. At last the runners slowed down, panting hard, pulling the rikishas up a sharp incline. Other men joined them and pushed from behind.

“‘They call this road the Jizozaka hill. These poor fellows hate the climb, yet they have to haul us up here so many times a day,’ explained Mrs. Easely. The carriages tilted precariously, and Amy gripped the side. The road snaked up between houses and shops and foliage. They pushed suddenly round the last dark curve and burst out upon the Bluff.

“Amy knew at once she had left Japan and entered another world. An invisible door had closed behind her.

“She seemed suddenly near to the sky. All about her was light and greenery. It was Bournemouth, transported and touched by the hand of God; there was a feeling of omnipresence upon the Bluff. They drove along the crest of the hill, along a narrow, twisting road of panoramic views. At each curve the ground seemed to fall steeply away … It was the most breathtaking place Amy had ever seen. She felt she looked down upon the world from here, between mortals and celestials, a mediator between the two. Anyone on the Bluff must be forgiven, thought Amy, in feeling superiority their natural right.”

The Painted Cage, by Meira Chand, 1986

Jizozaka, leading to the Bluff, Yokohama, c. 1910.

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