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Photographer's Note

During my first trip to Japan in 2004 I spent four or five days in Kyoto. You wouldn’t guess it by looking at my portfolio. Not only my visit coincided with a pretty bad typhoon (which meant lots of rain) but also I was very new to the art of slide photography (those who tried it will know how unforgiving transparency film is when it comes to such annoying detail as correct exposure). So I’m not going to present stunning shots of the Golden Pavilion, colourful maiko or manicured gardens. The ones I did manage to take would struggle to compete with photos taken using a mobile phone manufactured in the early 90s. But I’ve dug out a series of three “nothing special” images suitable, in my view, to be uploaded to TE.

Pulled rickshaws were invented in the late 19th century and immediately became a hit throughout Asia. They are still used in Kyoto and Tokyo, but mainly as tourist attraction. In Japan, human-powered rickshaws have been largely replaced by automated cycle vehicles known as velotaxis (I haven’t got any photos of those, sorry!).

Automated or not, they are still part of the local culture and a serious means of transport, as this sign suggests.

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Additional Photos by Kasia Nowak (kasianowak) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1305 W: 6 N: 2362] (13657)
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