Monday, October 10, 2011

Shrine Carrying Festival

This has been quite an exciting and busy weekend for us, considering we stayed at home. Our little town came alive Saturday night & Sunday morning/afternoon for the annual Shrine Carrying Festival. The men form teams that represent "neighborhoods" of the towns, wear matching headbands and traditional clothing, and work together to carry a gigantic shrine down the streets.

Only one of the shrines. There were five total!

The anticipation for this event was incredible! As I was getting ready in our apartment, I could hear the taiko drums and see the illuminated shrines 150 yards away, across the rice fields. Matt was invited to participate in the shrine carrying, which was neat since the town doesn't get to interact with him as much as me.

I made Matt Japanese "Omu-rice" after his exhausting night~

The neighbors' adorable little girl <3

Waiting at the shrine

I have no idea how they put these up by hand!


Everyone had their cute little dogs out, too!

Taking a break! They had Asahi provided for the men.

Hope you approve, Mom!

Finally finished!

The kids carried a small shrine after the festivities.

Entrance to our local shrine.

Kitty prayer tablets. I want one!

I'm glad I wore comfy shoes since we did a LOT of walking.

And thus, Matt finally had his official debut in town! Today is another public holiday, this time for "Health and Sports Day." ( We already had our Sports Festival, though. ) Later this evening, the husband and I plan to venture into the next prefecture over to meet up with Matt's new friends from Japanese class. They're throwing a Canadian Thanksgiving potluck dinner and I'm anxious to meet everyone.

P.S. I also made a video of the shrine carrying, do check it out!

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