Children’s Day (Kodomo no Hi)

Children's Day Hunter Goes to Kyoto


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Golden Week is here! Since the start of my new life in the spring, I'd been so exhausted and had really been looking forward to this holiday. (^^♪

We went on a family trip to Kyoto this time. As we were walking through a busy shopping district called "Nishiki Ichiba (Nishiki Market)," popular with tourists, I found some irises on sale at a florist's!

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I knew that on Children's Day on May 5 you were supposed to prepare a bath with iris leaves, but I didn't know how thick iris leaves were. I was imagining thinner, more bamboo-like leaves, so I was quite surprised. Certainly, these firm and super-straight iris leaves could keep all the illnesses and evil spirits away, as is traditionally believed.
But 400 yen for just three stems? Too expensive for me - so I passed on the iris bath again this year (^_^;)

In a hotel lobby, I found a display of Gogatsu Ningyo, or a Children's Day Doll!


I had rarely seen Gogatsu Ningyo before... the doll was huge - it was a life-sized suit of armor that my grandfather could have worn! The display was grand, and as you would expect for an international hotel, it came with a bilingual description in Japanese and English.

Most households only display scaled-down versions or just the kabuto helmet, as most of them don't have enough room for the life-sized display. Not only that, it would be too frightening to have the life-sized yoroi armor at home - it looks as though it might start walking in the middle of the night! (||゜Д゜) Scaaaaryyyy! (゜Д゜||)

It's best to simply appreciate Gogatsu Ningyo at a hotel.

On the way home, we also found a set of koinobori, or carp streamers!


And that was the only set of carp streamers I saw on Children's Day this year.

I never expected that anyone would be displaying their own carp streamers, as my neighborhood is full of apartments. But this one was hanging in front of a restaurant.

They look as if they are literally "hanging" - I wonder how strong the wind would have to be to make this set look like proper carp streamers.

In this year's Golden Week, I tried to pay attention to various Children's Day-related matters. So then my mother started calling me the Children's Day Hunter (LOL).

That made me realize how little interest I'd had in Children's Day in the past.

So this time, irises and the Gogatsu Ningyo both made a fresh, surprising impression on me.

Perhaps because I have no brothers, May 5th has been just another day during the Golden Week holiday, with nothing special to do.

If I'm ever to have an iris bath or an opportunity to display Gogatsu Ningyo at home, that might be when I'm blessed with a baby boy.

Hinano         Author:Hinano

I am sophomore at the University in Tokyo. I live with my parents in Yokohama. I hand-make all my gifts! I love eating and reading.

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