Yesterday I had the great pleasure of discovering a new place - one that I had no idea existed.
The Kumatori Community Hall - rengakan (brick building). What a cool place! And just along the road from my house, in the next little town over.
rengakan (picture from the Kumatori Cho website)
The building is an old cotton mill from the early 1900s. It's been restored and refurbished and maintains a lot of its original elements such as the lights and some of the pulleys and mechanical gadgets. These days it houses the community hall, a gallery, a cafe and a small studio. I was in seventh heaven! It's very rare to see old buildings like this in Japan. Brick buildings were not the norm (and I have no idea why it was built in this style) and many old buildings were destroyed in the war or have since been demolished. What a treat it was.
I was just like a real tourist snapping pictures. You can see them here on Flickr.