Tweet of the Week #117: Kumamoto Castle Wall Restoration Complete!

Kumamoto Castle is looking better than ever!

By 2 min read

At last, the restored Kumamoto Castle has recovered its former glory. Free from scaffolding, one of Japan’s most beautiful castles now stands proud, a symbol of the locals’ unwavering strength. 

Kumamoto Castle is known as the “castle of ginkgo nuts” for a ginko tree planted during its construction in 1600. The current castle is a reconstruction built in 1960, but it was heavily damaged after a terrible earthquake in 2016.

The earthquake caused 80 meters of the castle’s Nagabei Wall to collapse. The destruction of the city’s jewel was a tragic sight for the locals and a heartbreaking reminder of nature’s power. For the past five years, the beautiful castle has been covered in gaudy scaffolding.



“Here’s how it was when I went there. Hang in there, Kumamoto! Hang in there, Japan!”

After a lot of hard work later, the castle looks better than ever. The entire 242-meter long Nagabei Wall required demolition, but workers rebuilt it from the ground up using stainless steel reinforcements as quake-resistant measures.

While some work remains to be done inside the castle grounds, the castle’s office would like everyone to witness how much progress has been made in such a short period.





“Hey, look!

All the scaffolding has been removed!!!

Kumamoto Castle castle tower is back!!!”

How to use とき to express ‘at the time’ or ‘when’

Nihon ni itta toki, to kusan odosan miyage o kau ka imashita!

The word とき translates to “time” and is often used to express the period when an action or a state occurred. とき acts as a connector between two sentences, the first giving details on the time or period and the second, stating the action or state.

You can express events and actions that took place in the past.

  • 学生がくせいのとき、インターンシップしました。= When I was a student, I did an internship.
  • 日本に行ったとき、とくさんお土産みやげいました = When I went to Japan, I bought tons of souvenirs.

とき can help express what you intend to do in the future.

You can also express permanent truth and continuous actions. Things that take place at specific times such as closing the windows when the wind is strong.

  • べるとき、絶対ぜったいテレビをしたほうがいい = When you eat, you should definitely turn off the TV
  • よるるとき、みなさんは電気でんき真っ暗ま くらにして寝ますか? = When you sleep at night, do you turn all the lights off?

Finally, とき can also help you express what you intend to do in the future.

  • 結婚けっこんするときにこの指輪ゆびわを買います= When I get married, I’ll buy this ring.
  • 日本にいくとき、とくさんお土産みやげいます = When I go to Japan, I will buy tons of souvenirs.

Note that when you use とき with nouns, you need to use the particle の.


Japanese Romaji English
足場あしば ashiba scaffolding
はずされる torihazusareru be taken off
天守閣てんしゅかく tenshyukaku castle Tower
復活ふっかつする fukkatsu suru come back to life
インターンシップ intaanshippu internship
真っ暗ま くら
makkura ni in total darkness



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