Thursday, June 9, 2011

Tsutsui Festival

This past Friday I was sitting at home, resting after work when all the sudden at 8pm I started to hear drums and flute music. And it would not stop, so I put on my shoes and walked a few blocks from my apartment to find a large out door festival with floats. It turns out the it was the start of a three day long party taking place all around my apartment. I think this happens yearly but this was the first time I happen to be home. All the noise was being made by these kids inside the floats. It seems like lots of work, but they played non-stop for about 10 hours a day.Tsutsui is my hood, a section of the ward of Higashi. Tsutsui has two floats, these old guys were running the show I think. Telling each float where to go and not sharing little beers.The floats are very tall and very old. You can see the puppets on top, they dance around and are human powered. The floats were made before the time of over head wires I'm guessing.To get under the wires, they have since been modified so that the little house on top can be lowered. But that's not good enough and someone has to push over the wires too.Saturday evening the two floats come to an intersection in the middle of tsutsui, it was like when the two gangs confronted each other in beginning of the beat-it video. Below is the start of the square-off.Then the dance. You can see the massive crowd, it went down each of the four blocks.Most of the lanterns were candled powered. When it's time to blow out the candle hanging off of the floats, you just have to smack the bottom of the lantern. Air rushing through the lamp blows out the candle.After the square-off in the center of town, both floats took off down the road and parade around for a few more hours.Here is a video from Saturday evening, enjoy!

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