On December 29th and 30th we went to Hiroshima, which is about a 1 1/2 hour Shinkansen (bullet train) ride away from Himeji. We were sad to find out upon our arrival that most everything was closed down due to the approaching New Year, but decided to explore the city all the same. We were not let down, as we seldom are in Japan. We wondered through the Peace Park, saw many memorials, saw the A-Bomb Dome, and then went a bit farther north to the Hiroshima Castle. Also, during our stay in Hiroshima, we found a restaurant, Kemby's, which served MEXICAN FOOD!! We stuffed ourselves, despite the small portion sizes, then ventured upstairs to their cigar lounge. It was like a second Christmas for Joe, as he hasn't been able to find a cigar, let alone a CUBAN (!), anywhere in Japan. We were very impressed, not just with the cigars and Mexican food, but with the city of Hiroshima as a whole. Joe and I couldn't stop talking about how Japan is most likeley the only country that could take such a tragic and horrible disaster as the Atomic Bombing of Hiroshima and turn it into something positive. Nowhere in the city was there any sign of hatred toward America or other countries. All we saw were signs of hope for a better world and peace. Japan, especially Hiroshima, is a place of peace. Once again, we have realized how much we can learn from Japan.