I’ve just finished up Term 1 this year at my kindergarten in Tokyo meaning I can finally breathe a sigh of relief after a busy few weeks writing reports, overseeing teacher conferences and clearing up my classroom. The next few weeks should be less hectic, allowing me to write more, work out more and generally get into the spirit of summer.
Which, incidentally, has finally arrived!
2019 was the worst rainy season here I can remember – close to four weeks of scattered rain. When researching trips to Tokyo, many people on forums and Facebook groups ask the question: “Is it okay to visit the city during rainy season?” My answer would always be to avoid it, unless you are totally bound by a schedule and have to visit during that time. But maybe that’s just me. Coming from Northern Ireland, I’ve had enough rain for a lifetime.
Last weekend, we took a trip out to Kawasaki to see the fuurin-ichi (wind chime fair) at Kawasaki Daishi Temple. At this event, craftsmen from all over Japan gather to display and sell thousands of these chimes, which ring gently in the summer breeze. While I have been to Kawasaki a few times before – including covering the Kanamara Penis Festival – this was my first time to this particular temple, and I really recommend it! It was nice to walk about the sleepy Kawasaki streets on our way there, too.
The approach to the temple itself is nice because it features a strip of traditional shops selling everything from candy to colorful daruma dolls – but without the hectic crowds you are likely to find at Sensoji and other more popular temples.
Check out some photos from our little trip to Kawasaki-daishi, and watch out for how the sweet sellers make the candy – it’s an elaborate and musical display, as you can see in the video at the end of this post.