Okazaki Cherry Blossom Festival Pt.1

The Okazaki Cherry Blossom Festival started a few days ago. People from all atound Aichi (and further, I’d bet) came to oogle the somewhat famous cherry trees. Now that the weather’s finally consistently warm, the trees are blooming up a storm.

After work, I met up with a friend to try and enjoy a little bit of the festival before they closed at 10. We quickly made our way to the venue, grabbed some snacks if grilled meats and sweets, and found a place to take a few pictures.

Most of the trees were illuminated with lanterns of naked bulbs. There were also tons of booths and stalls selling snacks or swag for over inflated prices.

My friend and I ended up sharing a ¥500 bag of cotton candy, while we walked about, and joked about how our phones captured better pictures than our cameras.

All in all it was okay, though we have both seen better. It’s scheduled to continue until mid-April, though it’s sure to be crowded.

From Higashi Okazaki station, it’s about a ten minute walk. Just head towards Okazaki Castle and you can’t miss it.

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Handmade Bowl

Friday was a holiday, so I went to the mall with a friend. There was a small grouping of tabled set up where you could try to make your own pottery. 
The fee was ¥1200 for one piece, with an additional ¥700 fee if you wanted it shipped to your house after it was fired in the kiln. 

There were a few items you could learn how to make: two types of plates, two types of bowls, a mug, or an animal. I made a pie plate.

We got to hand sculpt our pieces under the instruction of a professional. We were taught how to work the clay on the wheel, how to make 3D adornments, and how to do etching cleanly. Then, we were asked what color glaze we wanted. I choose blue.

The piece need to finish its procrssing at the shop so I’ll have to wait until the new year to get it. I chose to have it sent to my home since the factory is a bit far out of the way.

Stone Murals in Okazaki

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Last week, I had an an assignment in Okazaki. I took the JR Toukaidou Line. The station is about thirty minutes from Nagoya.

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After exiting the station, I found a large plaza with these interesting stone inlays in the sidewalk.

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Okazaki has a lot of history so I’m not too surprised. When I went to the castle-turned-museum, I learned a little about it.