Akemashite omedeto gozaimasu, A HAPPY NEW YEAR from Ichiroya from Osaka.
Ogenki desuka? How are you? We hope you had a nice and pleasant start of 2014. From tomorrow, most people start working and schools start. It is time to leave this Oshogatsu kibun(festive mood of the New Year holidays) and to make a fresh start of workig!
We had a nice and relaxing holidays-visiting Ichiro's parents with his sister's family, also our daughter's family visited us together with our son in law's family, we celebrated his sister's engagement. Oshogatsu (New Year Holidays) is always a nice family reunion time.
People came back from their hometown, so yesterday was a peak of U-turn traffic jam.
We have introduced about local characters who are have been created for revitalization of local small cities in our past newsletter. http://kyouki.hatenablog.com/entry/2013/08/25/211844
Kumamon is a mascot created by the government of Kumamot prefecture and also there are many other `official' mascots of local prefectures.
However, the mascot, Funassy(in Japanese we say Funassi) is absolutely the number one mascot, most famous and loved mascot since last year. Funassy even won the champion of Yuru-kyara(local mascot) Grand Prix 2012! Funassy is `unofficial' mascot of Funabashi city(Chiba Prefecture). The name Funassy is a created word from Funa from Funabashi city and nassy, pears which are famous products from the city. Funassy, a pear-shaped funky character is NOT authorized from Funabashi city, but Funassy is created by one individual.
He talks with the very high pitch voice and what made him so popular is his funny action!
He jumps, talks, shows his dance- he does his best everytime. His appearance is not so cool but everyone becomes fan of Funassy by seeing his performance.
He even dance with Michael Jackson's Thriller!
Everyone must have thought he was too strange at first but he appears on TV almost everyday and his making every effort for everything to amuse people is rising more and more popularity.
We hear he is originally a retailer(owns his shop) but now he concentrates and does his best as Funassy to give laughter to the audience. He is not sophisticated comedian or cool entertainer, but his simple but energetic action seems to give a lot of fun too all generations.
He seems to keep his popularity for a while!
We are coming back to our office with full of energy (from Osechi ryori-new year dish). We hope you enjoy watching Ichiroya this year also.
We wish you a good health and a joyful 2014.
from Ichiro, Yuka and everyone at Ichiroya