Photographer's Note

An integral part of the Japanese culture is their rail system. It is one of the world's most reliable and efficient systems, one that snakes to all corners of the Island and provides transit to millions of people each year on it's 21,000+ km of track.

The Japanese National Railway, or the JNR was the national railway network from 1872 to 1987. During the war, many of the lines throughout Japan were dismantled to supply steel to the war effort. Due to mounting debt after the war (some ¥25 trillion/$200 billion) the system was broken up and privatized. The once government run JNR now consists of JR East, JR West and JR Central.

You will find passengers most likely whiling away their time sleeping, reading or playing keitai games as they transport themselves (somtimes several hours a day) in and out of the city to work. It makes full sense when you see the somber faces of these passengers as they make these arduous commutes.

"When a woman gets the blues she hangs her little head and cries
But when a man gets the blues he grabs a train and rides
Every time I see that lonesome railroad train
It makes me wish I was going home again…"
Jimmie Rodgers - Train Whistle Blues

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Additional Photos by Brendon Hicks (Brendon) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 81 W: 9 N: 61] (289)
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