There have been a couple of festivals of note in the last little while.

The first I will mention is the Ogaki Naked Man Festival. We did not attend this festival. The basic premise is that a bunch of men get really drunk, then get naked, then run around in the streets.

Last weekend was setsubun which marks the official beginning of spring. People throw beans. They throw them out of their house to get rid of evil spirits, then they throw them into their house to bring in good spirits. Then everybody eats their age in beans. There are still beans on our steps.

Yesterday was the Sagicho Fire Festival in Hirata. We did attend this festival. The basic premise is that a bunch of men get really drunk, then get mostly naked, then go burn stuff.

They start around noon building these huge floats made of bamboo.

Then they burn them. It took about 3 seconds for the float to go from green to this. Over the course of the afternoon, they burned 10 or 12 of these things.

Like any festival, there is food. It is predicatably nasty, greasy and expensive. 500 yen will get you a miserably soggy cob of BBQ'd corn, or maybe a tray of these things...takoyaki, or grilled octopus balls. The purplish stuff in the foreground is octopus waiting to be grilled in a runny batter with some veggies.

If you look carefully you should be able to identify these as some kind of bird...whole...three to a stick. We passed on these.

We did manage to find a guy selling steamed potatoes. They were good! I figured I was getting a good deal by avoiding fries until he put the butter on. My estimate is that he put about 125 ml of butter and 30 ml of salt on our potato.

Well gosh darn it! We are good lookin! Selah loves posing for pictures. Mixon does not.


Mini-Me said...

A couple of notes to clarify...
WE did not throw beans out our door to get rid of evil spirits...we live in an apartment and so we share steps with our neighbours...
Secondly, the big pyres at the festival were covered in prayers and poems from the community. This burning was done in front of the shinto shrine. People keep saying there is no religious significance to their festivals here...that THEY don't believe in such things.
I don't believe THEM anymore.

PS Generally, Japanese people are sure nice when they are drunk. :/

hollyck said...

Well, there is no doubt who those kids belong to! They look like SUCH a combination of the 2 of you! What a good looking bunch of people. I enjoy checking in on you guys through your blog :-)