Japan: Summer Matsuri
Summer in Japan is truly an incredible experience.
The food, the drinks, the fashion, our moods all change as we battle through the intense 38 degrees heat day in day out.
But that’s the fun of it, having to adjust and adapt, getting used to drinking a lot of sweet iced coffee (pronounced iced co-hee in Japanese *giggles*), and testing your physical skills running between air conditioned building straight into another.
Summer matsuri (summer festival) is one of such symbolism of summer in Japan. It is held within local communities, people gather, the children get their chance to get dressed up in their yukata (summer version of a kimono), and there are lots of street food, lanterns and dancing to be enjoyed.
I got to go to one which was held within walking distance to my home, and my father was in the organizing committee so I thought I would go check out what all the fuss was about.
The deep bass of the drumming taiko (japanese drum), the pretty lanterns, all these people milling around by food stalls and tempting each other to join in with the dancing… it was a magical sight.
As the sky got darker and darker, the lanterns glowed and the chatter hummed, the deep ‘taiko’ drum noise resonated, and the sweet sticky smell of candy floss hung in the warm humid air. Fighting off the mosquitoes, battling to get more takoyaki and lining up to get free treats at the end is all part of the fun at a matsuri… watching in sheer bliss and total awe at the ‘bon-odori’ dancers in the middle throughout…. ahhhh I do love being back in Japan!