I am SO pumped. Jeff and I have just spent all night preparing for the big trip tomorrow. From my last time in Japan, I remember the AMAZING summer fireworks displays. I remember sitting on a riverbank in Matsudo, watching fireworks pop up along the river at three different stations for over two hours. So naturally, I wanted to make sure Jeff got to see the wonder of Japanese fireworks. Unfortunately, most fireworks displays happen in August, during the time that we'll be in Canada. But we were lucky enough to find out about one set of fireworks happening tomorrow.
The Sumidagawa Fireworks.
In the guide book, I read, "One of the best fireworks displays in Tokyo." Perfect. Just what I want.
We had no idea.
Originally, we thought we'd take our time heading over to Tokyo tomorrow, pick up Joanne and head over to the river around 5pm to get a seat. We were wrong. This week, Jeff told Yuka, someone from our company, our plans. She thought we were crazy. She used to live in Tokyo, close to this location. She told Jeff about how she went there at 10 in the morning, and already the entire riverside was FULL!!! WHAT?!!! Then, today, I talked to one of the English teachers about our plans. She said that yes, this is one of the most popular fireworks displays in all of Japan. It's even broadcast on TV. O-o-o-o-o-o-k-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-y....
So we are now doing our traditional leave-at-4-in-the-morning gig. And we are DRIVING to TOKYO.... oh dear.... DRIVING the streets of TOKYO!!! Are we CRAZY?
We'll be trying to find parking that costs less than oh, 50 bucks for the day. And we will hopefully stake our claim on a fine piece of riverside territory by about 7am.
What will we do then?? Good question! We ARE prepared.... books, Japanese studies, Chinese checkers, digital camera, beer, water, sports drinks, grapefruit juice, rice, kimchi, salted soybeans (they go great with beer... the Japanese version of peanuts)... salad (and dressing), rice crackers, cheese bits (?), apples, bananas, cut up oranges, a thermos of tea, Pringles for Jeff, bread, jam, peanut butter (thanks mom), sunscreen, hats, cooler, mats, beach umbrella, ice packs, chopsticks and various other utensils... YUP, I'm an Urbancok!
Is it worth it? You tell me... read the following description, taken from the JAL website:
- The first venue: From Sakurabashi to Kototoibashi, Tokyo
- The second venue: From Komagatabashi to Umayabashi, Tokyo
- Saturday July 30th
The Sumidagawa Hanabi Fireworks display originated as the Ryogoku Hanabi (festival) in 1733 making this display over 270 years old. Today's version of the display features some 20,000 fireworks and over 900,000 people visit the venues in search of the mid-summer and seemingly impossible to find 'Edo cool.'
WOW. I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!