The emperor abdicates from the throne in favor of the prince at the end of this month because he is very old. His son is enthroned as the new emperor on May 1st. Each emperor has his title of era and when the emperor changes this title changes at the same time. The current emperor’s title is HEISEI, So it is over at that time. The new title was decided already. That is REIWA (令和). The meaning is ‘ Beautiful Harmony’.
The period from the end of April to the beginning of May is called GOLDEN WEEK because some national holidays are concentrated in this period.
SHOWA’s Day / April 29
Constitution Memorial Day / May 3
Greenery Day / May 4
Children’s Day / May 5
Besides them, there are 2 weekends around them. This year’s Golden Week is longer than usual, because there is the enthronement ceremony for the new emperor on May 1st – that day becomes national holiday. In addition, April 30th and May 2nd specially become national holidays. Also May 5 is Sunday this year, next Monday becomes the substitute holiday. So 10 consecutive holidays is totally made.
The very strong typhoon is coming to Japan today. It is expected that it will hit KANSAI area in the afternoon. The disruption of traffic is expected. JR line already decided to stop the all trains until 10 am, also NANKAI line and HANKYU line decided to stop the all trains until noon. Then there is a possibility that they will not operate them at all.
Besides them, the major tourist attractions – KAIYUKAN aquarium, USJ, the major department stores in OSAKA city will be closed.
The very strong wind and heavy rain is expected, so please check the information and pay attention for them.
Today is BOUSAI-NO-HI. BOUSAI means the disaster prevention. About 60 years ago (1960), September 1 was designated as BOUSAI-NO-HI to raise awareness of disaster prevention because a great earthquake called KANTO-DAISHINSAI(関東大震災) happened and over 100,000 people were killed on September 1 in 1923 – KANTO(関東) is the middle area of Japan including TOKYO. In addition, this season is the typhoon season, so we need to raise awareness of prevention for it more in this period – disaster drills are conducted here and there.
Recently, the number of typhoons in a year is increasing and the scale is getting huger. It is said that the global warming is cause of it.
In fact, western Japan got severe damage by heavy rain we have never experienced this year.
The weather forecast expects that another huge typhoon will hit Japan.
We need to watch out for it.
I went to a restroom in a department store these days. The one in department store is very clean – comparing with the other places, department stores keep restrooms clean.
In addition, disinfectant is put beside a toilet seat – users can disinfect the toilet seat by themselves before using.
Are we very fastidious about cleanliness?
Do you need it?
I think it is good that there is a baby chair in the male restroom, though.
It is expected that a typhoon will hit the west part of Japan this weekend.
This typhoon is 20th typhoon this year, although it doesn’t mean that all of them hit Japan.
Japan is in the typhoon season just now. A lot of typhoons come to Japan – it continues until the end of September or early October.
Strong wind and heavy rain are very dangerous. Also transportation is affected – airplanes, trains and ships may stop their operations. So we need to check the weather forecast frequently – there is a possibility that we won’t be able to go working or go home.
Recently, the number of typhoons is increasing and the scale of them is getting larger. Global warming may affect them.
BON-ODORI is a dancing festival whick is held during OBON.
This festival is held by each local community here and there in this season – so each festival isn’t so big.
A turret is built in the middle of an open space. On the turret, Japanese traditional instruments are played, then dancers who wear YUKATA(浴衣) – Japanese traditional clothes, make a circle and dance.
Anyone can participate in the dance.
Around the dancing space, many stalls are opened. They sell snacks and beverages, then some of them provide play such as a lottery to get toys, quoits, shooting and goldfish-scooping. So kids like BON-ODORI, too.
Today is a national holiday named YAMA-NO-HI. YAMA-NO-HI is Mountain Day.
It is to thank the benefit from mountains, because there are a lot of mountains in Japan.
This holiday began from 2016. This day itself doesn’t have any special meaning as the holiday.
OBON is one of the Buddhist annual event. Usually it is observed from August 13 to 15, although the period depends on the region.
It is said that our ancestor’s spirits come back to their home on OBON.
The family members gather together on OBON, also many companies give a vacation to their employees at that time – the period from 11 to 15, 16 or 19 is common this year.
So KISEI-RUSSHU or homecoming rush happens at that time, too.
Pay attention, because major tourist attractions will be crowded in this period.
I went to TAKATSUKI-MATSURI last weekend.
It is the local festival held in TAKATSUKI city.
This festival is held to strengthen the bond among residents in TAKATSUKI city – this time was the 49th time.
Many stalls were opened by local communities at the ground of TOEN(桃園) primary school.
Many people wore Japanese traditional clothes named YUKATA(浴衣).
I ate a local food named UDON-GYOZA(うどん餃子) – this is GYOZA which is made with Japanese traditional noodle named UDON instead of thin flour dough.
Also GYOZA is a dumpling wrapped with thin flour dough – the ingredients are basically minced pork, chopped leek, Chinese cabbage and so on.
The streets around TAKATSUKI station were closed and pedestrianized.
Then the dancing parade was conducted on the main street.
The big earthquake hit the northern part of OSAKA two month ago. So the cancellation of this festival were actually considered this year.
But the municipality decided to hold it to animate residents including victims of the earthquake.
I think that their decision was right because a lot of people visited it and they looked like enjoying it.
I hope it will be held next year, too.