One of the holidays last week, May 5th, was Children's Day or, more traditionally, Boys' Day. There aren't really any special events associated with the day, but many families with boys do put up some kind of decoration. Here's K with ours (enjoy this photo. It took ages to get him to look at the camera rather than behind him at all the cool shiny stuff...):
This set came from H's parents, who used to put it on display when H and his brothers were little. In the centre is a samurai-type helmet, at the sides are lanterns, banners, a sword and a bow and arrows and in the front is a fan and an unidentified round gold thing :-)
** H has just come to tell me that the unidentified round gold thing is actually some type of helmet and that all the items are connected with samurai and have connotations of strength. Thanks H! **
One of the sets of banners is shaped like koi (carp), which is a common theme for Boys' Day. It's said that koi swim upstream and become dragons at the end of their lives so, once again, a strong and rather cool image. A lot of people put up big colourful koi banners outside their house, which look fantastic swimming in the wind. I just went out to take a sneaky photo of some impressive koi-nobori that I'd spotted down the road but they've been taken down :-(
I suspect that's only because it's very windy today so if they reappear I'll post a shot then.