As I said 2 weeks ago, the odds that you will bump into a festival when you come to Japan in summer are quite high. One of them is fireworks shows. There are fireworks shows in almost every town in Japan over the summer holiday period between June and August. Wanna play fireworks yourself instead of watching? Unlike many other countries, it is legal to play with fireworks in Japan. It also explains why you will see shops put out loads of fireworks products in this time.
I went to one of the most-visited beaches in Osaka today – Nishikinohama(二色の浜海水浴場). It’s quite far, taking me over 40 min by train and costing me big (540yen for one way). After getting off the train, you’ll still have to walk for 15mins. I got there at noon and was chuffed to see it was overcast otherwise I may get burned. I was surprised to realize that there are no public shower facilities on the beach. The water is a little cloudy but still clean enough for swimming. Yet, there’s heaps of seaweed on the bed which is annoying, I thought it was limited to the shore area but as I got deeper there was still heaps. Some young people dug them up and placed them on top of their buddies head. How funny!
I spent an hour in the water and it feels great! There’s one thing very different (or I should say unusual) I noticed. Japanese people don’t go to the beach for a swim, they go there to play with water. As far as I could see, nobody actually swam while I was there for 2 hours. Also, only a small number of people can swim without relying on anything such as a lifebelt.
I was back at the hotel at 4pm to get ready for the fireworks at night. Though it wouldn’t start until 8pm, I decided to make it there sooner rather than later as I am totally inexperienced with the fireworks thing in Japan. I took a shower, grabbed something to eat, and took the train there. It was floored as I saw the people after getting off the train. Streets there were packed with people and police were there to regulate the road and the human traffic. To my surprise, there were many stalls selling traditional Japanese foods and drinks and the atmosphere at that moment was so overwhelming! Everyone was there waiting for the fireworks.
The fireworks started on time and last for longer than I expected. I was my second time to see fireworks in person. Except for fireworks of traditional shapes, there were also some surprises such as Doraemon, fruits and drinks you would see. It was about 1 hour into the fireworks show and I decided to go to take the train before the fireworks finished since it can take hours when everyone was going to take the trains at the same time.
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