Hello readers! How are you today?
Last Saturday it was the 7th of July. This day is the Japanese star festival called Tanabata!
There's a romantic legend about Tanabata, which involves Orihime and Hikoboshi, a couple who lived on opposite sides of the Amanogawa river. Long long ago, Orihime spent her days weaving beautiful fabric for her father to wear. She liked to please her father, but she was rather sad because she never had time to meet anyone to fall in love with. Her father felt sorry for her, so he introduced her to Hikoboshi, who herded cows on the other side of the river. The two fell in love right away and were duly married, but since they both neglected their work after getting married, Orihime's father was angry and forbade them to see each other anymore. However, Orihime begged her father to let the couple be reunited, so he agreed that on the seventh day of the seventh month they would be allowed to meet again.
This was the first time I experienced a Japanese festival, and I really enjoyed it! It was very busy in the streets of Hiratsuka, with a real party atmosphere. There were decorations put up by various shops, like the one above (it's by Mos Burger!), lots of food stalls and many people wearing yukata (summer kimono), including me!
It's by no means perfect, but I put it on pretty much entirely by myself including tying the obi, so I'm quite proud. I had a really good teacher though, my friend from Kanagawa who I was visiting on this day. She advised me not to wear geta if you're not used to it, it might hurt terribly and ruin your day, and besides that many Japanese girls do not. I matched my bag and hair accessory to my sandals to make it more balanced. Next time for my hair, I'll try an updo with braids.
I look extremely derp in this picture, but I wanted to show you some of the festival food. We had this (slightly pickled cucumber on a stick), Hiratsuka curry-pan (deep fried bread with curry inside- very yummy!), takoyaki, yakisoba.... lots of nice things! There was also some entertainment on the main stage, dancing and so on. We caught a bit of hula dancing!
It was so much fun, and I really enjoyed wearing yukata! There are various summer festivals throughout the season, so I hope to go to another in a month or so.
I hope you enjoyed the pictures! If you come to Japan, please try to catch a festival! I'm sure you will enjoy it, and it's something you can only experience here. I think you should try wearing yukata too!
See you next time,