Monday, August 6, 2012

Summer Fest

Why is Logan wearing a dress? Well I'm not exactly. I'm wearing Japanese Yukata, (Summer Kimono), a bit of formal wear.  To all you non Japanese people it looks exactly the same to a kimono. To Japanese people it is very different from a kimono though. It is only one layer whereas a kimono is normally two or more layers.  Yukatas have traded the rather pricy and warm silk threads for the more summery cotton. The sleeves are the same as a kimono, big baggy places to keep your money, sweat rag, and small things you've bought.   They aren't quite as formal as a kimono, you might wear to a wedding if you are Japanese, but I would still call it quit formal.  people really only wear them now for festivals and even though the cotton is less expensive, the price tag for mine rang in around $120.

So what is the big deal about Japanese Matsuri (festivals)?  I know a few of my readers are into Japanese comics and might have learned a cultural thing or two there. But to all the rest who don't know festivals in Japan are a little bit more important and a little bit more meaningful than our fruit festivals around home.  Of course they look similar, games, food, crowds, businesses handing out things, kids having fun, young couples loving it up, and older couples sitting watching the world go by.  Most Japanese festivals bring traditional old culture, and community to life.  Traditional songs are played, and traditional dances are danced.  It reminds Japanese people of who they are in the world and where they came from.

Ofcouse here is Japan, so some of the similarities are different. festival food can be fried chicken and cotton candy like we have, but also includes very Japanese foods like Tako Yaki (octopus ball), Okonomi Yaki (Cabbage Pancake), Miso Ice cream, Milk Snow Cones, Squid on a stick, and many green tea flavored things, from ice cream to cake.

Check out the videos below.

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