Aru Sendō no Hanashi – The Story of a Boatman

Just was made aware of a recently released film called “Aru Sendō no Hanashi”, which means “The Story of a Boatman”.

My Japanese is really not very good, so I would have a hard time understanding this film, but from this little Youtube video clip, I really want to see it.


Some digging around I did on this film reveals that it is a late Meiji period story of an aging boatman, named Toiichi, who lives in a small hut by a river. The nearby villagers are looking forward to the completion of a new bridge that will connect them to the modern world. He has been left behind by the changing times, but continues to row his boat. When a mysterious girl appears, his life begins to change drastically.

This is all I know except that the film is described as weaving a tale with visual beauty and music, and that I want to see it. Ω

Kitamaebune Website

Recently, I discovered a great website about Kitamaebune. I’m not quite sure who is running the site. It has some short, strange Youtube videos in Japanese, and some very basic travel information about the different port cities that were major places connected with Kitamaebune.

The site is simply and it is in Japanese. However, there is an english language section that can be accessed at, or to simply read about Kitamaebune, just go straight to Ω

Building Woody Joe’s 1/72-scale Kitamaebune Kit – Part 5

Last week, I displayed my collection of Japanese traditional boat models at the big Wooden Boat Festival in Port Townsend, Washington, and I managed to sell my Higaki kaisen and Gifu tabune models to visitors to the show.

My now sold Higaki kaisen model at the Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival.

But, that leaves my collection of wasen models without a flagship sengokubune. And, with a Japanese boat models display in Japantown coming up next month, it’s become that much more important for me to finish the Kitamaebune kit. So, now that I’m back home, I’ve been putting greater effort on this model.

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Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival, Sept 6-8, 2019

Ship Modeler

The Port Townsend Wooden Boat festival is coming up this weekend, and I’m headed up to Washington state tomorrow for a long, long drive, to display a number of models of Japanese traditional boats the whole weekend inside the boat shop.

I’ll also be demoing construction of 1/20 and 1/10 scale models of a rice field boat from the area of Himi, a small town in western Toyama prefecture on the Japan Sea coast. I’ll be working on some other models too, since I’ll be there for three days.

Here’s a link to some of the info on the Himi rice field boat that boatbuilder Douglas Brooks built for the Himi museum:

Mr. Brooks held a workshop in Port Towsend last week in which students spent several days learning to build a Japanese-style river boat using traditional tools and techniques. That boat will be on display at the festival, and there will be a…

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