Thursday, 22 September 2011

Celebration time

In our limited time here in Tokyo, we've become aware of the many festivals that happen over the year. One that I love is the o-mikoshi festival. This is usually held in the depths of August where the humidity is at its worst. For some reason, they are being held later than usual and we've seen many over the last few weekends in our neighbourhood. On sunday we came across this one in the heart of Shibuya. I love them as they are loud, fun and friendly affairs which create a carnival-type atmosphere that usually ends in a huge drinking session. I'm not sure how you get involved, but everyone seems to be enjoying themselves as they carry the portable shrine (this varies greatly in size and is thought to be a vehicle for gods) on their shoulders, chanting loudly. The tradition is said to date back to at least 749 and I hope it lasts for many more years.

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