Jinrikisha Driver

Jinrikisha Driver - Kurashiki, Japan

Jinrikisha Driver – Kurashiki, Japan

I don’t know if “driver” is the right terminology for this man since he not only steers the Jinrikisha but powers it as he pulls it. There are two well maintained and classic looking Jinrikisha behind him. The word rickshaw is derived from this Japanese term back in the late 18th century, when they were a popular low-cost way to get around in Asia. Now in Japan, they mostly exist as tourist curiosities.

There are also cycle rickshaws, instead of the pulled rickshaws, which are better known as pedicabs. While I haven’t seen pedicabs in Japan, they are very popular in downtown Austin. So ironically, the use of rickshaws seem a lot more common in Texas than in Japan.

I asked this gentleman for a portrait in the historic Kurashiku district. I suppose his outfit is mean to look fairly traditional, excluding of course his plastic sports watch and the ubiquitous portable computer.


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