|The supreme elegance of the Tea Ceremony|
Japan Day has grown bigger and more popular over the last few years and is one of the reasons I love living in New Zealand's biggest city. I am a sucker for cultural festivals and with its multicultural population Auckland now has its fair share. Regular readers of this blog will know that I have a particular love for Japan and Japanese culture so on Japan Day I was in my happy place.
|Hinamatsuri dolls -set up as for a religious festival|
All things Japanese were on display, from ikebana, bonsai and calligraphy to kempo martial art, traditional dance and the strange, unique Japanese street fashions of Lolita and Gothic Lolita.
Visitors could try their hand at calligraphy, play Japanese board games, dress up in a kimono or sample the potent Japanese beer (8% alcohol).
There was a stage for J-pop performances and another stage for traditional dance and song. The tiny tots from Auckland's Japanese kindergarten were little scene stealers
Food stalls offered sushi, okonomiyaki (one of my favourite light meals) sashimi, teriyaki, green tea ice cream and a myriad of other taste delights. I wandered around with a big smile on my face snapping photos here and there and pretending I was on holiday in Japan. The steady drizzle didn't dampen my spirits nor, anyone else's, it seemed.
|My nephew, a black belt in Kempo|
|Pounding the rice for rice cakes|
|Lolita Japanese street fashion|