viernes, 27 de diciembre de 2013

Merry Christmas!

PingMag : Art, Design, Life - from Japan

Merry Christmas! The holidays start today, folks. First everyone in Japan celebrates Christmas (kind of) and then there is the main event of the season, heading to a shrine on New Years Day. The first visit to a shrine in the New Year is called Hatsumode.No sooner have the decorations for December 25th come down then the Oshogatsu (Japanese New Year) ones will go up. Saying that, Christmas itself isnt really celebrated in Japan. Its more of an excuse for the shopping districts and department stores et al to come alive with the biggest illuminations of the year.We took a look at how Christmas was being expressed around Tokyo.All the commercial shopping districts in Tokyo make an effort to get into the festive spirit.You can find these kinds of booths around Tokyo, typically selling Christmas cake. Naturally the staff are wearing the requisite Santa hats.You can also find Christmas twists on familiar sights, such as this Xmas-themed advertising on a building in Akihabara.We said Christmas cake before but in Japan this often involves strawberries and cream, rather than the traditional fruitcake found in other countries. Some of the cakes in Japan, such as the one here, go to particularly inventive ways to be cute. This year saw the opening of a new shopping and dining complex called KITTE, near Tokyo Station. It is pulling in visitors with its giant Christmas tree. If done well, a Christmas tree in a mall is guaranteed to become an attraction.Meanwhile, over in the Japanese subculture capital that is Akihabara, we found a more unusual Christmas tree on a tank.Staying in Akiba, here some Shockers (the baddies from the Kamen Rider franchise) are celebrating Christmas. But Santa is only supposed to come if youve been good during the year, so they might be disappointed when its time to unwrap the prezziesIn Japan, Christmas dinner means just one thing: Chicken. And in particular, KFC. Huh? Yes, Kentucky Fried Chicken is the place to go for a Xmas feast. And not just for the grub, Colonel Sanders is there to welcome you in the right garb.For some reason or other Japan just loves the Manneken Pis statue. Originally from Brussels, this cheeky boy can be found all over the country. Here is a version on a platform in Hamamatsucho Station and even he is getting into the Yuletide mood.But where do people go to get their Santa costumes? Don Quijote, of course!If you want to play Father Christmas when giving everyone their presents, you should check out the selection of red suits at Don Quijote.There are also some unconventional (and not quite family-friendly) costumes Christmas cosplay!And for the boys too!



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