Nakamura-ya ryokan in Musa.
A two-story ryokan called Nakamura-ya (中村屋) in Musa, Omi-Hachiman has been totally destroyed by an early-morning fire on Dec. 10, 2010. The owner/operator couple of the 200-year-old inn were sleeping on the 1st floor, but managed to escape after hearing a fire alarm. No customers were staying in the ryokan at the time. A neighbor reported the fire a little before 5 am. The fire spread rapidly as it was a wooden building. Some 24 fire trucks put out the blaze after about 3 hours.
Nakamura-ya has a 400-year history as one of the hatago inns of Musa, the 66th post town on the Nakasendo Road linking Tokyo (Edo) and Kyoto through an interior route. The building that burned down was about 200 years old. Shiga has ten historical post towns on the Nakasendo. Musa, today a small and quiet neighborhood, is near Ohmi Railways Musa Station, a short ride from Omi-Hachiman.
Azai Sisters (Chacha, Go, Hatsu)
Shiga Prefecture is now offering free high-res downloads of manga characters depicting the three Azai sisters for your New Year’s postcards (nengajo). For personal and non-commercial use, you can freely use the graphic to print on your New Year’s postcards.
There is a variety of graphics available, all centering on the three characters above depicting Chacha, Go, and Hatsu who were the daughters of Lord Azai Nagamasa and Oichi (younger sister of Lord Oda Nobunaga). They lived in Odani Castle in Nagahama in the turbulent 16th century.
Shiga is making a big fuss over these sisters because from Jan. 9, 2011, NHK TV will start broadcasting a weekly TV series called Go–Himetachi no Sengoku(Go–Princesses of the Warring States, 江～姫たちの戦国) for its NHK Taiga Drama series. Go (also called Ogo) is the youngest of the three sisters. Shiga Prefecture is hoping that this year-long TV series will attract attention to Shiga with more tourists.
Download the graphics from this page. Just click on the graphic you want to download: