05 December 2017


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Below is a selection of pictures from Dankai.Suki so you can get a good idea of what is on offer there!

31 October 2017

Ghosts Of The Matsuri (or, The Three Friends)

It was not so many moons ago, on the night before Matsuri, that three young men were gathered to practice tying their fundoshi. Although there would be helpers tomorrow who very ably (and tightly) bound festival participants in crisp white cloth, these three men had already taken to the wearing of fundoshi. They wanted to arrive already attired, having each assisted one of the others in dressing:

The fairer-skinned friend learned the exact tightenings and twists prefered by the darkest friend. This friend in turn learned to wrap their tawny friend, who assisted the first, fairer friend in knotting his fundoshi.

These three friends had observed older men wearing fundoshi at an onsen, and had inquired with the gentlemen on how to tighten the cloth. Each friend learned from a different teacher. One friend learned from a stocky teacher. One learned from a slim gentleman. The third friend learned from a muscular sculpture of a man.

Each of the three friends had adopted idiosyncracies and customization of their teacher. One friend liked his fundoshi elegantly finished and braided. Another friend prefered his fundoshi efficiently cinched with little regard to loose ends. The last friend enjoyed his fundoshi tight, as though ready for battle.

It was as they joined one another that night before the festival, in the first friend's apartment, that the news broke. A terrible tsunami had struck the village where their fundoshi instructors lived. Many people fleeing the shoreline were swept away when a bridge came unmoored from its ancient wooden pilings. Among the lost were their three tutors, witnesses said. The men mourned, saying prayers for those lost in the tsunami. It was a somber meeting as they loosened their robes and stepped into the center of the apartment.