At the edge of the horizon

At the edge of the horizon
At the edge of Japan

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Dreamers In the Dream House

七夕 festival was today. 七夕 is the kanji for Tanabata, a traditional Japanese festival that began around the 6th century. Otherwise known as the Festival of the Star Crossed Lovers, Tanabata is a time when people make wishes to improve their skills or their lives. The story behind the festival itself is beautiful. The two stars (Alter and Vega) represent Hikoboshi and Orihime, two lovers who were separated from each other by the Milky Way (the river of heaven). Only on this particular day, the 7th day of the 7th month, can they reunite. It's a beautiful folk story.

On this day (and actually a week or so prior to this day) you can find bamboo sprig trees with strips of colored people that individuals have written their wishes on. These trees are located in a number of places: schools, marketplaces, businesses...even a place like Partyland, the frozen yogurt shop (much like Pinkberry/Red Mango in the USA).

Tanabata Tree

My friend A. and I met this evening at Partyland. After a failed Performance Event/Dance Party that I was supposed to host tonight, I felt pretty down. But since it was Tanabata, she and I decided to celebrate in a more positive way. We ate our dessert, chatted about a number of things -- men, love, memories of Ishigaki, food etc. -- and then we wrote our wishes. We also found a number of stray wishes laying around the shop. I thought these little fragments were beautiful. Something about being able to find these wishes and read them, even if I don't know the people who wrote them, gives me hope.

Here's to the dreamers! <3
Random wishes lead astray

The one in German says: "I wish for a pain free tattoo"


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