Tag Archives: matsu

Meet Matsu-chan!

On Sat­ur­day, we went to the Nedu Jin­ga Shrine Annu­al Fes­ti­val with a few of the JLSP vol­un­teers we had met dur­ing the week. It was held in the late after­noon and was just the thing we need­ed to help recov­er from the wel­com­ing par­ty the night before. The set­up of the fes­ti­val remind­ed me of a tra­di­tion­al coun­ty fair and it had a warm and friend­ly feel to it. It is inter­est­ing to be able to find things like this in the mid­dle of Tokyo, a dis­tinct con­trast from the high-tech met­ro­pol­i­tan dis­tricts of Shin­juku and Shibuya!

A stall sell­ing choco­late cov­ered bananas on a stick.

We got anoth­er chance to see Sumo wrestling at the fes­ti­val; despite only involv­ing some of the local ama­teurs (as opposed to the ‘super­stars’ we saw last week), it was still high­ly enter­tain­ing and I was able to get a much bet­ter view with­out pay­ing an extor­tion­ate price. The wrestlers were slim­mer and moved faster, the fights last­ed longer, and best of all, I didn’t have to endure 6 hours of it in a row! I rec­om­mend see­ing ama­teur Sumo over one of the big tour­na­ments if you just want a taste of it.

Going in for the kill.

The main event of the day how­ev­er, was yet to come… Towards the end of the after­noon I was grow­ing tired and my inter­est in the fes­ti­val was grad­u­al­ly wan­ing. But then I spot­ted some­thing in the dis­tance that imme­di­ate­ly grabbed my atten­tion and awok­en my sens­es; I knew in my heart that I was not going home today with­out it. There was a stall that offered the chance to win a [real!] tur­tle if you could fish three of them out of the small pond using a net made of rice paper. Only in Japan!
Here is a video of my suc­cess­ful attempt [I promise to edit it and add cool music lat­er!]:

You had to be quick to catch the tur­tles before the rice paper dis­solved. I failed my first attempt but gave it anoth­er go and was reward­ed with a tur­tle of my own to take home! I named it Mat­suri, or Mat­su-chan for short, and it now lives in a plas­tic con­tain­er on my desk. It has been a week so far and I’m hap­py to report Mat­su-chan is alive and well, hap­pi­ly eat­ing the tur­tle pel­lets I bought from the super­mar­ket!

Meet Mat­su-chan!

Category: JLSP | Tags: , , , ,