Ambassador’s wife hosts Japanese festival

The National, Thursday July 7th, 2016

MADAM Yoko Matsumoto, the wife of Japanese Ambassador Morio Matsumoto, hosted a Japanese festival of Tanabata at the embassy residence yesterday.
The festival is an annual event celebrated in Japan and it involves writing of wishes on colourful papers which are placed on bamboo trees.
Tanabata is also known as Star Festival.
Guests were told about the significance of the celebration in Japan and then given strips of papers which they wrote down their wishes to be hung on bamboo trees, while Matsumoto and his wife  played a musical piece.
Madam Yoko said the festival celebrated the reunion of two young lovers in the star world, based on a Chinese legend introduced to Japan 2000 years ago.
“As the story spread, our ancestors combined it into a summer event (celebrated either in July or August),” she said.
“They thought that making and using ink with water drops on the leaves in the early morning of the day will be helpful to enhance their calligraphy skills. “Besides with the special ink they wrote down their wishes on the pieces of paper to put on the bamboo tree wishing their dreams would come true.”
After the guests had made their wishes, they had lunch with Madam Yoko to conclude the festival.