Sunday, July 16, 2006

The Tanabata Festival 7/7/06

Earlier this month Japan celebrated Tanabata, a festival that happens on 7/7 of the lunar month. Wikipedia explains the festival here One of the cool and interesting ways that Tanabata is celebrated is by writing wishes on decorative pieces of paper and hanging them from Bamboo, not all the decorations hung on the bamboo have wishes but most of them do. When I visited the Senso-JI temple it was during the lead up to Tanabata so I saw this Tanabata bamboo in one area of the temple:

The bamboo with decorations and wishes for Tanabata was not restricted to temples, for about a week before the night of 7/7 bamboo was (most of it cut ie not living) was placed all over Tokyo (and the rest of Japan) for people to hang wishes and decorations from, my apartment building had a bamboo shoot, as did my office, even my underground subway station had the bamboo shoot shown below, it made Tokyo look very festive to see all this throughout the city:

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