Craft fair Matsumoto 2015 vol.1 (Matsumoto / 松本)

In Matsumoto city, a fair that craftsman in Japan assembles took place in end of May every year.
In sunny weather, I went to a park named "Agata no mori" today.

There are many kinds of crafts. Shoes, clothes, hats, bags, dishes, table wears...
Today I will show you Japanese-kinds of crafts mainly.

These are crafts made by bamboo.
These are lunch box, bags and plates. In the samples, I was surprised one sample. I had memo which written "used for 20 years.".

These are tea pods for Japanese tea.
Many ladies were watching them.

Chopsticks and bowls.
We use these bowls mostly for miso-soup.

I'm not sure what to use, but I think this is a kind of toy.

Japanese sandal

It was so sunny day!
I bought a lemonade.
It was so cold and tasty.

It is written "Lemonade shop" in Japanese.

The fair take places until tomorrow!
May this weather keeps til tomorrow!


O inari san in Kamakura (Sasuke inari shrine / 佐助稲荷, Kamakura / 鎌倉) vol.3

You will see a lot of Torii, the gates to the shrine, and banner flags here in Sasuke inari shrine.

In the ancient Japan, the color red is treated as sacred and valuable color.
There are several meanings to this color.

It is thought as a color which beats the evil.
And it is thought that get rid of rats, birds and insects which damages farm crops.
To color the Torii, ancient Japanese used mercury and become red.
Mercury have effects to the insects, so it was not just a saying.

I got a question why foxes wearing red clothes.
The person who gave me a question knew several things about Japanese culture.

He asked me "Jizo (the small standing budda statue in the streets) is wearing red clothes, too and is it same meanning? He also knew the meaning of red clothes, too. People prays for children's health to Jizo, and let them wear red clothes.

The meaning of clothes for foxes in shrines are same as Jizo.

O inari san's favorite food is Inari sushi.
Inari sushi is also called "O inari san" in Japanese. I didn't know why they are called same.
I would like to research about this sushi soon.

I recommend to go to Zeni arai benten shrine.
There are small booth there and inside, you can eat little sweet delicious Inari sushi and Great Budda beer.

Go through the red tunnel, and have a tasty Inari sushi!


O inari san in Kamakura (Sasuke inari shrine / 佐助稲荷, Kamakura / 鎌倉) vol.2

As Sasuke inari has its long history, there are many kinds of foxes.

There might be the trends or popular designer in each era.

There are quite difference in the shapes of their tail, expression on their face, and shape of their body.

Sometimes wearing a cloth in red.

These two had characteristic faces.

I will write about the road entering the shrine next time.
It looks like  red tunnel.


O inari san in Kamakura (Sasuke inari shrine / 佐助稲荷, Kamakura / 鎌倉) vol.1

There is most famous Inari shrine in Kyoto, but there is beautiful shrine in Kamakura, too.

It takes about an hour to go to Kamakura from Tokyo.
To go to Sasuke inari shrine, it takes 30 minutes walk from Kamakura station.
It is easy to take a bus to Great Budda, called "Daibutsu" in Japanese, and it takes about 15 minutes walk to the shrine.

This shrine is built about 800 years ago, at Kamakura era.

In the dreams of Yoritomo Minamoto, the future shogun of Kamakura government, a man came and said "Fight with government now. I will help you." Yoritomo asked him. "Who are you?"
The man answered. "I am the inari in Kamakura."

He called and gathered the samurai, and fought with the Taira government.
He won the government and started Kamakura era.

He didn't forget about the dream. He built a shrine in Kamakura.

Now, Inari shrine has few areas, and the picture which I uploaded today is the most oldest part.

In the nature mountain, I felt the history years past through them.


Gagaku concert, the oldest ensemble in the world (Matsumoto city / 松本市) vol.4

The last act for the Gagaku concert was "Ryou Ou".
I was expecting to see this act most and will upload a lot of pictures today.

Ryou Ou, is also said as Ran Ryou Ou. I will write about Ran Ryo Ou this time.
It is written like this in Japanese.

Ran Ryo Ou is a king in China, the kingdom named Hokusei which flourished 550 A.D..
He is said that he was really handsome looking, and also had gentle character.

When the war began, he lead soldiers to the battlefields.
He was brave and valiant king, but the his beauty and kindness appeared as minus point in the war. Soldiers were absorbed in their beautiful king and become dreamy feelings. Of course they were very weak.

Ran Ryou Ou had to do something to get over the crisis.

One day, he wore fierce looking mask.
The soldiers were surprised and feared how their king changed.

Ran Ryou Ou whipped his soldiers with fierce mask, and the soldiers fought strongly to their enemy.

They won the war.

This act is showing a seen that Ran Ryou Ou is wearing the mask.

I knew Ran Ryou Ou from a comic in Japan, a manga, named "Shura no Mon".
The lead character is a heir of ancient Japanese martial art and he fought with kung fu fighter from Taiwan. The kung fu fighter's name was Ran Ryou Ou.

In manga, Ran Ryou Ou was like this.

In this story, Ran Ryou Ou become stronger after taking off his mask.

I will both recommend to see Gagaku and read Shura no Mon.