Friday, August 01, 2008
Being the middle of summer it seems theres a festival or matsuri being held literally on every street corner.
I ventured out to the Endoji Shopping Arcade earlier this week to see what was happening at the annual Tanabata Festival.The Endoji Shotengai is a traditional shopping arcade within spitting distance of Nagoya Station and many modern buildings in Meieki.Its a quiet backwater.A step back from the modern hurly burly glass,metal and bright lights of more upmarket shopping areas.Grimy,down at heel.
For a few days each year the arcade is decorated with traditional tanabata decorations and huge paper mache figures,models and characters.
Large figures of cartoon characters such as Tom and Jerry and Winnie the Pooh vie for the attention of onlookers.A variety of animals such as whales and koalas had also been constructed and hung above the passing shoppers.
Most of the shops in the arcade which straddles a large main road, appear to be family owned.Theres the usual collection of restaurants,clothing,coffee and shoe shops.All very low key and friendly.No large chain stores or blaring music.I did notice a large number of small children and young parents but this was probably due to the fact that the school summer vacation is underway.
The arcade reminded me of those in Osu Kannon.I just wonder how long before the developers and bulldozers move in and change the area.Already in Osu some older wooden buildings have been replaced by nondescript concrete boxes.With the Endoji Arcade being much smaller the loss of one or two buildings to the wreckers ball obviously has a more significant impact.
Posted by Tim at 8:21 AM