Monday, August 23, 2010

Crepe myrtle

What kinds of flowers do you think when hearing the word of mid summer?
Morning glory and sunflower are very popular in Japan.

The blossoms of this photo are crepe myrtle.
They are at their best in the garden of New Public Hall near Todaiji Temple.
This tree is called "sarusuberi" in Japanese.
It means that even monkey("saru" ) may slip from ("suberu") the tree due to its slippery surface of the trunk.
You can enjoy white or light purple blossoms as well as vivid pink ones for about 100 days.

They look very cute.
No wonder the language of flowers is eloquence and amiability!


Monday, August 9, 2010

the Bon fire

Kyoto's Gion festival marks the start of summer (especially for people in Kyoto). With Bon fire, people feel the end of summer is approaching.

During Bon (usually in mid Aug.), ancestors have a summer visit to this world, and with Bon fire we send off our ancestors to the other world.

In Nara, this Bon fire is lit on Aug. 15 at Mt. Takamado. 108 fire beds are lined in the shape of "大(dai)" - a Kanji character that symbolizes "universe." You can observe this Bon fire from mostly anywhere in Nara Park.

Date: Aug. 15
20:00~ light up at Mt. Takamado
20:00~ concert by Nara city firefighters musical band at Tobihino in Nara Park

Also on this day!
19:00~22:00 about 2500 lanterns light up Great Buddha Hall at Todaiji Temple
* free admission to Great Buddha Hall during light up

Also on Aug. 15&14!
19:00~21:30 more than 2000 lanterns light up the precinct of Kasuga Grand Shire

Before going to these traditions, get to know the city and roads while the sun is up -by joining morning Nara Walk tours!

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