Water Under the Kappabashi Bridge
NAGANO – “Water under the bridge” is a beautiful English phrase meaning forgiveness. Here at Kamikochi in Matsumoto city, Nagano Prefecture, the water is as beautiful as the phrase under the Kappabashi bridge. A kappa is a Japanese mythological creature (river imp) who is very good at swimming and lives near the river, and bashi (or hashi) means a “bridge”.
It is believed that the name of the bridge refers to a gorge that existed here a long time ago. The creature was said to have lived down there in the darkness. The Azusagawa river’s water is completely transparent, but it looks clear sky-blue because of the refraction of sunlight.
When you visit this site on a sunny day like the one on which this photo was taken, you may feel like letting go of all your sadness allowing yourself to be taken along with the currents of this perfectly clean, magical water. Why not? And then, the blue sky joined by the mountains patchy with snow will encourage you to live with fun and joy!
Photo by Hiroki Watanabe, text by Motomi Takahashi