If you are American, you might be confused looking at the title of this post. Let me clarify. I wanted to wish holiday greetings to all of my American and Japanese friends, and we celebrate different holidays. July 7th is a festival in Japan called Tanabata, or the Star Festival. People write wishes on little strips of paper and hang them on trees. Here’s a photograph of a teacher from my group putting his wish on a little tree at one of the schools we visited.
For people from other countries who are reading this, the 4th of July is America’s Independence Day. We usually celebrate by watching fireworks, having backyard barbeques, and spending time with family and friends. In my case, I went to see some fireworks one day early, and then spent today at the New England Aquarium with my cousins. It was raining all day, so the typical outdoor festivities wouldn’t work today. At the aquarium, they even had some Japanese jellyfish! Here’s a little video that I filmed today too, because jellyfish are so cool.
While I was in Japan, I didn’t get to celebrate any big holiday, but I did get to walk through a carnival type event on my way to dinner with Naoki. There were lots of kids all dressed up and enjoying carnival type food, right along the path leading up to a shrine. It was pretty different than a celebration I’d see in the United States. We were on our way to dinner, so I didn’t get to taste any of the foods or play any of the games, but it all looked great!
I’m curious about what other celebrations happen around this time in other parts of the world! Have any of you experienced a different or new kind of holiday from another country? There must be many more holidays that would be new to us. Whatever holidays you celebrate, wherever you are, wishing all of you readers a wonderful week!
p.s. Do you have fireworks like this in Japan?