All About Japan

Miyako: A Short Film

Trains Stations Video Archive Japanese Countryside Hyogo

I was searching for a train station, the kind you rarely see: small, countryside. We found it—and by accident, found something else, someone else: Miyako, the station master.

I watched her smile at each exiting passenger, then noticed her wave at the departing one-car train. Then, surprisingly, she continued waving. She waved until there was no trace left of the distant train. No one witnessed her—except, well, me. In that short span, my love and wonder of life was renewed.

When I spoke to her later, she said at first she felt so shy, and hardly waved at all. Slowly, over time, she began doing something she neither needed to do, nor imagined she ever would.

So this is Miyako, master of a tiny station in the middle of nowhere Japan who attends to every train and passenger that passes by.