Uwajima is a traditional castle town in Ehime Prefecture. The people there have a long tradition of bullfighting. Huge bulls weighing about a ton battle each other for supremacy in the ring. Close bonds develop between the people and their bulls. Kyle Card meets the local people and discovers their passion for bullfighting.
Address: 496-2 Warei-cho, Uwajima City, Ehime Pref.
tel: +81 (0)895-22-3934
Address: 995-3 Hiraura, Uwajima City, Ehime Pref.
tel: +81 (0)895-28-0182
Address: 2323-3 Yusu, Uwajima City, Ehime Pref.
Address: 1-53 Horibata-cho, Uwajima City, Ehime Pref.
tel: +81 (0)895-25-7711
Traveler: Kyle Card > More Info
Occupation:actor / talent
Length of residence in Japan:7 years
Improving my Japanese and work as an actor
I was very pleased to be given the opportunity to explore Uwajima, a part of Shikoku I had never visited or heard much about in my previous travels. What I discovered was an area rich in traditional culture and history, with passionate and inspiring narratives.
The half-agriculture/half-fishing system — including the creation of dandan-batake (terraced fields) — illustrates the tenacity of the people of Uwajima. Traditionally a poor area due to geographical constraints, the people of Uwajima took what they were given by nature and made it work. They didn't give up, they didn't complain, they made it work.
This dedicated hard work and tenacity was rewarded in modern times with the boom of the pearl-cultivation industry, which brought the local people unprecedented prosperity.
Uwajima's traditional bullfighting culture holds similar narratives. The daily regimen for one fighting bull includes daily hikes up a mountainside, paired with other training methods to keep him in top condition, ready to fight on any given day and ready to win. These methods show the importance of the daily grind, a constant advance towards a specific goal — and that success is always cultivated through unrelenting hard work.
I left Uwajima refreshed and inspired by these realizations, which I have since tried to apply to my own life and communicate to others as well. I recommend anyone to visit Uwajima and experience this extraordinary area for themselves. I promise that one will leave filled with a new tenacity and passion for life they have never experienced before.