Monday, 6 August 2012

Tanabata Fireworks

This week is Tanabata, the biggest festival in Sendai. Tanabata is a Japan-wide festival, but Sendai has the most famous one. The folk story behind it is from a Chinese story, and varies across Japan, but there's a cute kids version here. If it's raining on tanabata, the lovers can't meet and have to wait another year. It takes place on the 7th of July in most of Japan, but the 7th of August in Sendai. It was throwing it down with rain on the 7th July, so I'm sure Altair and Vega are anxiously watching the weather forecast for tomorrow! On Tanabata, you're supposed to write your wishes for the next year on a piece of paper, then hang it from a bamboo branch. Sendai also has lots of Sendai specific decorations. More about those tomorrow! 

On the 5th, there are fireworks to celebrate the start of the festival. Along with what felt like the whole population of Sendai, we headed down to watch them. Lots of people dress up in Yukata (casual, summer kimono), and who were we to refuse?! It was insanely hot, and as someone who's only used to fireworks in November, it felt rather odd to be watching them in the heat! It was a lot of fun though! 

Getting our Japanese friends to help us out! 

We had to go to our friend Shoko's house to get her mother to sort us out!

Hurrah, we got there!

Walking to the park through the tanabata decorations.

A small park with lots of trees is not where I'd choose to hold a major fireworks festival, but everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves!

It was really really hot, hence the shiny faces!

Smiley ladies!

Starting fireworks in the daylight. Another strange decision! 

Fireworks time!

Smiley face fireworks :)


  1. Yay! It's the first of your (I trust many) Sendai Tanabata posts! You all looked lovely in your yukata, but I'm rather grateful it wasn't me. It gets HOT under that obi.

    Have fun this week, and lots more photos, please!

    PS: John, why aren't you wearing at least a jinbei? ^^

    1. We went on a walk round today, and there'll be at least 2 more posts of photos! They're so pretty!

      It was hot under the obi, but it was quite comfortable really. And fun to prance about in! We got a lot of confused looks! John has a jinbei that he bought when he came on holiday to Japan before, but he left it in England and refused to buy a new one. Boys just don't get the fun of dressing up!

  2. I notice that already having a yukata which you had left at home didn't stop you from buying a new one! You all look fab xxx

    1. Hehe I'm a girl so rules like that don't apply to me!