Tanabata Matsuri, or the Star Festival, is happening today in Japan!
It celebrates the meeting of the deities Orihime and Hikoboshi. According to legend, the Milky Way separates these lovers, and they are allowed to meet only once a year on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month (July 7!)
There's a famous song by Tegomass about it that I looooooove~~~
You can watch the music video:
(Tegomass is hard to find on YouTube and Vimeo ㅠㅠ)
You can eat tasty mochi with star decorations all over :3
You dress in yukata (a summer kimono) and play with fireworks, lanterns, and other festival games! It's keeps going all through the night.
You also write your wishes on pieces of paper and tie them to bamboo to make them come true :)
If you're interested, here's the Japanese legend about the stars:
Orihime, daughter of the Tentei (the Sky King, or the universe itself), wove beautiful clothes by the bank of the Amanogawa (Milky Way, lit. "heavenly river"). Her father loved the cloth that she wove and so she worked very hard every day to weave it. However, Orihime was sad that because of her hard work she could never meet and fall in love with anyone.
In anger, Tentei separated the two lovers across the Amanogawa and forbade them to meet.
Tentei was moved by his daughter’s tears and allowed the two to meet on the 7th day of the 7th month if she worked hard and finished her weaving.
It is said that if it rains on Tanabata, the magpies cannot come and the two lovers must wait until another year to meet.
Do any of you have summer wishes or traditions?
BONUS THANKS TO @SEOINHAN!!!
Here's a guide to making some Tanabata origami :3