Saturday, August 11, 2012

A Spring Festival - Inuyama, Japan

In the spring, I went to a festival in Inuyama with a friend.  It was such a memorable day.  I completely indulged myself in all of the Japanese street food which enticed me in every direction, while I saw an amazing festival at night that made me fear for my life.

The main street was filled with food everywhere.  While I am familiar with the more traditional Japanese street or festival food such as takoyaki, dango, and monjayaki, I discovered a new food - a french dog.

A "French dog" is a humongous corn dog that could literally kill.  I would be scared to eat it because it has sausage inside that is 10 times bigger than a hot dog!  I was shocked.  If only I had a picture ...

While some people may have enjoyed the French dogs, I love the more traditional Japanese food.  I wanted to eat as much Japanese food as possible since I won't be here forever.

One of my favorites is dango, which is made out of rice and seasoned to perfection.  At least in my mind ... 

While I was enticed by the food, I'm sure these lovely masks made a lot of kids happy! I just love the bright color of these masks ... I can be really ADD at times.

After passing the food-filled streets, I became mesmerized by the beauty of the cherry blossoms.  Spring is a wonderful time to be in Japan!

I approached the temple area, but unfortunately the castle had closed its gates, so we could not enter.  I'm glad to have at least observed the beautiful temple area though and incredible view of the town.

After exploring the temple, it was time to finally watch the show.  It was the MOST amazing part of the festival, as I saw such incredible human strength as men moved the huge, festival structure below with all their might.

When the men carrying the structure move it to turn it onto another street, it looks as if it will fall and crush you.  I almost had a heart attack, but thankfully no one was injured that night.

There were nearly ten of these structures that were featured and they were all decorated in a similar, yet different fashion.  The lanterns were bright and swayed, while drums and music could be heard playing from inside.  Believe it or not, there are people inside!

I only wish I went to more of these.  If you visit Japan, please enjoy a festival while you are here because it adds to the cultural experience.  And don't forget to try the street food!

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