Sunday, May 06, 2007
Happy Boys' Day!
Happy Boys' Day! (Actually it is May 6th in my part of the world but it is still May 5th in some parts and besides, I was posting pictures of flowers yesterday.)
I really like Boys' Day just because of the "Koinobori" the colorful carp that are flown around the countryside for a week or so before May 5th. Especially now that we live out in the country, we can see beautiful sets of carp fluttering over farmers' fields and they are so bright and cheerful! Of course a family needs a lot of space to fly the carp and most Japanese homes do not include garden space let alone enough of an area to fly a carp that is about twice as tall as a person. When Takumi was a baby I used to buy little plastic and nylon ones that a child can wave about and we would hang it up on the apartment veranda. We've never had real koinobori in our family. I think there is also a tradition of displaying replicas of samurai armor but what really sets the day are the carp. A koinobori is supposed to represent a carp swimming upstream against the current and the families fly them in hopes that the boys in the family will have strength and overcome difficulties in their life.
A few years ago I made a small Koinobori quilt to hang from the end of April through the first half of May. I really like it though it doesn't show the bright colors of the real Koinobori. The pattern was from a Japanese book (obviously) but I remember giving the book away not long after so I don't even know the book's name. It will stay up in my entryway for another week, my small acknowledgement of Boys' Day.