YOHTAKA Andon (Lantern) Festival 2013 in Numata Town 2 !

by Kazu

After enjoying culinary delicacy sourced locally, with Mr. Yokoyama and a beautiful lady we jumped in the parade. We had to wear "happi" coat as  Mr .Yokoyama wore but his "happi" coat was dyed with Japanese indigo " AI" and aged enough as the one worn by the man of the town.
 As the beautiful lady poured Japanese sake to my shot glass again and again, I really enjoyed the food and drink so much. The service ? gratis !
Above is my favorite shot, the silhouette of a male with happi coat on the lantern float.
The most famous and popular Japanese animation character for infants "Anpan-man" is on the left. The character change his head that is made of a bread with sweet red-beans paste called "anko" inside. Changing the head reinforce the character again and again.  
Is it like a bureaucratic organization?

Other huge lantern floats were still covered with plastic sheets before the lantern fight in the climax.
It was the first time for my wife and me to see the lantern floats covered with plastic sheets. They stroke us as the beauty of lanterns with a little bit twist. Yes, like an illusion !
They seemed much more glaring than the bare lanterns. This lantern float was made up by the association of farmers in Numata Town and adjacent areas, praying for bumper crop this year. The characters "五穀豊穣" (Gokoku Hojo) means their hope and pray for bumper crop of five kinds of crops, such as rice, wheat, barley, millet, beans, and barnyard grass.
It is the first time to post these lantern floats with plastic covers. What do they come across ?
 The males on the float sang the traditional song of this festival and the audience also sang and clapped to the song loudly as if the citizens and the tourists to the town got together and made up one tribe.
Until the end of the festival ended by the lantern fights in front of the railway station, the singer performed again and again to the climax !
This was the second day of the festival but  you ain't seen nothing if you have not seen the festival on the second day !
Kudos to Mr.Yokoyama ! He guided us three times in this three years. He would have binge drinking that night. Good job ! and enjoy enough without concerns to receive guests from outside.  
This lantern float was made by the chambers and commerce of Numata Town. It was so different from the photo taken in the daylight, wasn't it ?
Everybody loves this largest lantern festival in Hokkaido.
Please visit Numata Town and the festival with your family and cronies.

To be continued.

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