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Cicada Songs

My 3rd day in Tokyo started smoothly with a Japanese traditional breakfast which consisted of miso soup and rice. Miso soup usually contains dashi (fish stock), tofu, wakame (seaweed) and green onion. All in all, super healthy. In my opinion, miso soup is a great comfort food. More please.

I have never really been a big fan of touristic attractions (maybe because of the massive, noisy crowds and queues) so I’ve decided to go and see some temples in Osaki, a peaceful residential area. I couldn’t believe how loud the cicadas were. It was like thousands of sound waves and frequencies produced by thousands of small and busy winged bodies alarmed by the hot summer days of Tokyo.

To prove my point I’ve added an audio sample (courtesy of Youtube-sama) below. I really wish I had a portable recorder with me so I can record these sounds for my next album.

And then, when I thought that cicadas were the loudest things invading this quiet area I heard something resembling a human scream coming from a bushy tree next to a park hosting a group of happy-go-lucky children. The closer I got the weirder it sounded and I realized it wasn’t a human scream but a bird one. Something similar to the screaming goats circulating on Youtube (the ones with crazy eyes and sticky tongues). I hope to learn one day what is the name of these funny screaming birds.

One day...

I was told that each shrine has its own ritual. Some would request that you wash your hands and mouth at the entrance (all done in a particular order and fashion). Once you’ve reached the shrine you have to throw a coin into the offering box followed by a short prayer and bow deeply twice, clap your hands twice, bow deeply once more. There is usually a thick rope with lots of big bells used before praying in order to get the kami's (Gods) attention. My bells were so quiet that it might have sounded like sweet lullabies to the Gods. I think I need to use more strenght next time. I was surprised to see someone left a carton of sake on the shrine for the Gods to cheer themselves up. Apparently it is common practice. Thoughtful.

Me and the Fox Spirit (Kitsune-sama) at the shrine…I won’t go into detail with my fox obsession.

I love the look of the small bars known as izakaya (居酒屋) and other small shops dispersed on the narrow streets of the Osaki area.

'Till next time.

Mata ne (またね)...see you later.

Lizabett R.

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