Saturday, May 27, 2017

Golden Week Adventures 2017 - Hamamatsu Kite Festival

This is the last of my Golden Week Adventure posts.  I took about a million photos that day, so it has taken me awhile to go through them. My friends and I got on the train at different stations, but met up in the last train car to go to Hamamatsu for the festival. The three day festival attracts approximately two million people over three days. The festival originated over 440 years ago when the then Lord of Hijuma Castle, who ruled Hamamtsu and the surrounding area, raised a kite in celebration of the birth of his first son. In this region of Japan, there is still the tradition of raising a kite with the name of one's child to celebrate the birth.


From the Hamamatsu train station, we took a bus to the area near the Nakatajima Sand Dunes where the kites were flown. It was very crowded and the kites were quite large.  It was exciting to see all that was happening. In addition to the kites to celebrate the birth of children, there are many kites representing different neighborhood groups.  These group kites battle each other in the sky, entangling the 5 mm thick hemp kite lines in an attempt to cut through the other kite's lines using friction. Each group has matching jackets and a bugle and drum band to give signals and cause excitement.
















After eating lunch and watching the kites, we headed back to the festival area near the train station.  There were so many things going on!  

Dancing  




Music performances 


Street performers 



There were many of these gotenyatai (palace-like floats), which were in the night parade. Volunteers encouraged us to take our photo wearing the traditional jackets. 








It was a fun day and I hope to attend this festival again next year!





Friday, May 26, 2017

2017 Smalls Stitch A Long - May

This year I plan to stitch the calendar cats (free charts at Happiness is Cross Stitching).  One small ornament per month, so this month is May.  I will wait to finish them all at the same time in December so that they will be the same size and somehow coordinate.





I'm linking up with Heather, at Stitching Lotus, the hostess of this stitch a long.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Birds and a Turtle

I see some amazing creatures in the little waterway near my apartment.  I'm always on the lookout for birds and fish and turtles and butterflies and plants. I find them to be so interesting!







Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

This is Cafe

My friend and I met for dinner and talking after work, at a restaurant called "THIS IS CAFE". She had been there before, but it was the first time for me.  I had seafood curry and rice, she had a chicken dish with bread. Both meals came with a salad plate and a beverage.





We will get together again soon.