Hello everyone! This is Yoko writing this week's newsletter. Ogenki desuka?
Hope everyone is finding signs of Spring in your town. Here in Osaka, days are longer and warmer.
We find 'Ume' (plum blossom) blooming beautifully everywhere. Soon, it will be 'Sakura'(cherry blossom) O-Hanami season.
I am looking forward to taking my beagle Marin to Ohanami next month. :)
Ichiro and Yuka left for New York on Friday. It seems that their exhibition of Men's Haura at Globus Washitsu in New York city will draw
a large crowd already. If you live nearby or happen to be in the neighborhood next week, please stop by!
I wish I could sneak in Yuka's suitcase for an opportunity to peek, but oh well, I will just sit tight here and Gaman!
This is the place:
As for today's topic, I would like to write about one of my favorite Japanese movies.
I subscribe to Hulu and Netflix because I love watching western movies and TV drams mostly, but last week, I watched the most humorous
Jidai Geki, Japanese Samurai movie. The title is 'Cho Kousoku! Sankin Koutai'. It translates to 'Samurai Hustle' according to the Wiki, but it literary means 'super high speed Sankin-Koutai'. Sankin-Koutai is a Daimyo(provincial lords)'s alternate-year residence in Edo.
Under that system, Daimyos were ordered to serve the central military government every other year, so they went back and forth between their territory and the Edo once a two years. When Daimyos go to the service, they made extravagant processions accompanied by retainers to show their power and dignity. This processions were called 大名行列, Daimyo Gyoretsu.
The purpose of this system was to make Daimyos serve in military defense service in Edo (Edo Bakufu) and to have them spend huge amount of money for the processions, so that the Bakufu can put them under control.
In other words, take away their financial power so that they can not resist the Bakufu! This system lasted until the end of the Edo Bakufu.
The origin of festival attractions you often see at Japanese festivals are derived from this custom.
At the root of these gorgeous processions were vanity, pride, and sorrow of regional lords.
Oh! back to the story of the movie!
Well, this movie is about one poor Daimyo trying to reach Edo at unbelievably high speed by deceiving a decent Daimyo procession at government checking stations. It is not just a family comedy, but it also includes cruel Samurai battle and love scenes, so I do not recommend watching in front of kids, but if you need a loud laugh, please watch this heart warming Samurai movie!
So today, I would like to recommend some items with Daimyo procession motif!!!
Thank you so much for reading.
Wishing you a happy and fun Spring!