As somewhat of a consolation prize, I decided to pop over to a neighboring prefecture to catch a Tanabata festival in a smaller town. Continuing the streak of amazing summer weather we’ve been having recently, the skies were just a stellar mix of rich blue hues, interspersed with fantastic white clouds and the whole affair dramatically lit from up above by a summer sun out in full force.
We paid for the amazing weather with amazing heat – I honestly think this was one of the hottest days so far this summer, but at least it was (to use a semi-tired cliche) a dry heat – rather unusual for the normally humid Japanese summer – so we lucked out in a way. We did our best to avoid wilting under the ferocious solar onslaught by consuming copious amounts of liquid, usually in the form of kakigori (Japanese shaved ice). I’m not usually the biggest kakigori fan, but I easily consumed more on this day alone than in the past 3 years combined.
Besides colourful taste treat sensations that turned my tongue all sorts of funky colours, I was pleasantly surprised to see a veritable (neon) rainbow of colours spread out across all the thousands of decorations lining the shops and streets. I don’t think I’ve seen this much colour in an inaka (countryside) town in quite some time!
All in all it was a great time. I’m not sure if I’ll make it to any more summer festivals this year, but even if I don’t, this was a nice way to cap off the summer.
A bunch more pictures after the jump, plus my usual plaintive pleas for patience while I work on the next installment of my Autumn Road Trip series.
Okay, that’s it for now. I’m hard at work on the next installment of the Great 2008 Cross-Japan Autumn Road Trip, so stay tuned!
Now listening to: Sum 41 – In Too Deep
This brings back memories of my college days…