Monday, 28 July 2008

PostHeaderIcon Good Japan: Festivals


It's about time I gave Japan a good old slap on the back for something. In my previous post I mentioned I had been to two different festivals last week. I already mentioned that I like the atmosphere of walking around the narrow, old streets of a small town. A lot of the stalls sell food/drink that is similar to village fairs in Britain and carnivals in America. The sickly sweet aroma of Anpanman cakes being baked replaces that of candy floss and popcorn. There is also a number of games which children can play in order to win a Nintendo Wii or something similar. The women of all ages wear their traditional gear as they walk around drinking 2 litres worth of coke out of a plastic carton. The streets become すし詰め ('packed like sushi', a similar Japanese idiom I learned the other day) which greatly contributes to the already crippling heat and humidity. Despite this... the usually empty and dull streets become alive with people of all ages. Families and friends fill tables and drink lots of beer and eat lots of noodles and grilled meats. It is this community aspect that I enjoy watching from afar and with a hint of envy that there was never such an event in my neighbourhood back home.

Some negative aspects are that everything closes up shop at 9pm. There is also a hint of mundane organisation that plagues all Japanese events and the non-traditional bands onstage usually suck beyond belief. Still.... good job Japan.

Akaoka Festival. It got a lot more crowded up the street.

A typical selection of stalls. They sell the same old rubbish but the kids love them.

Trying to scoop up goldfish with some paper. I thought about giving it a go.


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About Me

I am a 24 year old Scotsman currently teaching English to Japanese schoolchildren. I live in a small town on the east coast of Kochi prefecture.