Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Okehazama Tour

October 4th was a day to remember and a real treat. My friend Dohaland from Samurai Country by accident bumped into Mr. Yukio Kajino during the Nagoya Festival. I met Mr. Kajino at the Okehazama booth and told me he was going to led a walking tour of the Arimatsu Okehazama Battlefield. This was a must and I was in heaven.

The next I arrived at the reception near Arimatsu Station where Mr. Kajino gave me the Okehazama book mention in the last post as gift. I only took a quick peek, but found out right away that the book will be useful. The tour was about to start and around thirty people should up.

Mr. Kajino led the way talking about the battlefield and Okehazama's geography. He also possessed a picture of the area from the Taisho Era and was amazed how Okehazama has changed. The map above was the tour route and the pace was slow.

There were many things that were new to me as I took pictures of various locations. I did not even know when to start. Mr. Kajino continued to give information on the location of the Oda and Imagawa at various times during the battle. To my surprise, the Arimatsu location has the same landmarks as the Toyoake city location, but with Arimatsu more spread out.

I never questioned Mr. Kajino with the touchy issues, just listened and learned. He did ask me to chime in when needed which was nice. I also told him I was more familiar with the Toyoake location than the Arimatsu.

Finally the tour stopped at battlefield where it was closed off for construction. People where still able to shoot some pictures and I did as well. Mr. Kajino explained that the construction is for next year's anniversary event. He also gave a quick glimpse what the Nobunaga statue would look like.

When the tour was finally over, I was asking questions myself. How come I did not know the Arimatsu area better earlier? One reason why is the the Arimatsu's Battlefield landmarks are hidden and hard to find. Mr. Kajino asked me if I could a tour in English next year. I would if I can able to do it. If I was able to do it, then I must spend at least a couple of days where I go on the route again covering everything. Taking notes and more pictures would help as well.

I just soaked up the moment. I was like a kid in the candy store. The book he gave me will be helpful and thank him for it. Before heading back for Nagoya, Mr. Kajino and I discussed briefly about the two battlefield landmarks. I told him both are legit and should be treat as such.

I am grateful for Dohaland and Mr. Kajino's kindness. More later.

Tenka no tame!


Travis Belrose said...

Sounds like a great a tour. Without disturbing anyone's wa, can you mention what the "touchy issues" were? I'm curious if there is still historical debate about how the battle played out or something like that.

otsuke said...

The touchy issue is the battlefield. Is the real battlefield at Arimatsu or Toyoake City? Most historians are leaning on Arimatsu as the original site. However, the Ministry of Education declared Toyoake city as a national landmark in 1937 and the access is easier as well. You should treat both as such. Both landmarks are not moving anywhere.

I think the Arimatsu crowd know this is a problem and trying to make the Arimatsu location easier for the traveler to find. You either have to take a bus or taxi and the other landmarls near Arimatsu are harder to find.

The other problem is a debate on opinion. Frontal attack or surprise? I say surprise since my own military experience refects it and put myself in Nobunaga's shoes.

A lot of people disgree with me, but they understand where I am coming from. Once they know that I am a military man, it is a new ball game.

I am duty at the moment and can give more answers next week.