About half a century ago, I used to spend most of my days wandering around in the streets of Kobe. I was just over twenty, and as I particularly liked ships and harbors, the exotic city of Kobe was for me a thrilling wonderland sort of place.

The contemporary Kobe is of course a completely different place from the city that used to be my playground a half century ago. The way it has changed especially since the devastating shock of the Great Hanshin Earthquake seemed to me quite remarkable, which however made traveling back in time and chasing after that romantic dream of my youth a difficult task. Nonetheless, as I kept tracing back my memories of Kobe while pointing my camera at the reality and actuality of the city today, I felt how the scenery naturally began to overlap with the image of Kobe that had engraved itself on my heart and mind.

And that’s just a matter of course. After all, the city of Kobe, that pretty urban area sandwiched between the sea and the beautiful mountains, with a single railway running right through it, hasn’t changed at all!

-Daido Moriyama, afterword

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