Thursday, August 31, 2006


The smile of a young monk (17 years old) reflected in the ancient carvings of the Bayon, Angkor Thom, part of the world heritage Angkor Wat temple complex in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Behind him, one of 216 faces watch over the temple.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Cambodia: Here I Come!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
A beautiful Miko, or shrine maiden, wearing a hanagasa (a hat decorated with fake flowers) during Gion Matsuri.

I'm on my way to Cambodia and I won't be back until the 31st... Just in time for the never-ending Sports Festival practice, also known around here as the second term of the Japanese junior high school year. Unfortunately, I'm going to miss some prime matsuri time (festival season), but at least I made it to Gion Matsuri this year, even if it did rain everyday! Here's a few more images from the archives...

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Actually, the rain was a good thing. Yay for Japanese umbrellas!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
This little White Herron Dancer was interviewed after performing at Yasaka Shrine, but she wasn't the only one. A Gaijin's (foreigner's ) impressions of Gion Matsuri, tonight at 5! Thats what makes the news in a country with a comparatively low crime rate (^_<)

Monday, August 14, 2006

Destination Cambodia: 4 Days and counting!

Could it be?
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Is that Angelina Jolie? Sadly,no. It's only me (although the resemblence is startling). I've always been a bit of a tree- hugger, but I think this sudden outburst of affection was the due to the realization that I had finally found a place where I could live out my childhood dream of being Indiana Jones. Angkor Thom, Cambodia.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Here's to you, Ms. 70 Years Old, Bright Purple-Haired, Kimono-Wearing Koto Player...

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

A local obaachan (old woman) jammin' on her koto during a community arts festival. Is that Kool-aid grape colored hair? You better believe it! And she ain't the only one. Obaachans all over Japan dye their hair ridiculously bright and flashy colors, such as the classic Candy Apple Red or the slightly more eccentric electric blue. Straight out of Osaka, this cooky-colored-kami-craze has taken even the inaka by storm!(Kami means hair, inaka means countryside)

To be quite honest, that shade of purple it is the perfect compliment for your kimono! So keep on rockin' out to those classic Koto hits like Sakura, Kimigayo! And don't forget the traditional favorite "Purple Haze"! Play that koto, girl! We here at Mboogiedown:Japan salute you!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Flower Procession: Gion Matsuri

Maiko from Miyagawa-cho being pulled through Kyoto by young men from their neighborhood.
I'm sure you're all sick of seeing pictures from Gion Matsuri, but I just can't help myself! I'll try to write more later...Until then just enjoy the view from here (^_<)

Young women carrying their hanagasa, straw hats covered with fake paper flowers, seek shelter beneath their umbrellas.

Kanazuru, a maiko from Miyagawa-cho.

A young White Herron Dancer giggling as she ran for cover from the relentless rain.

A maiko from Gion.

A shrine maiden of Yasaka Jinja tries to keep her hanagasa in place.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

BLEACH Rocks! (^o^) ♪

Just a little somethin' somthin' to break the monotony of Gion Matsuri: The second opening of BLEACH: D-Technolife, by UVERWORLD. I tried to put up the karaoke-style version, but I'm experiencing techo- Difficulties. Until then, here's my own personal translation:

You've been hurt by unspeakble pain and sadness
Try to carry the burden of the unerasable past
Don't throw away your life!

I held your hand...

Will I lose you someday I wonder...
I want to protect your fading smile, and you.

Even if the resounding voice that calls me withers
Even if its erased by the winds that come with time


You, who's been hurt by unspeakable pain and sadness

Don't say things like "I can't laugh" or "I hate people"

There's meaning in everything that will happens in the future we can't see

You're fine just as you are

There will definately come a time when you realize it.

You and me, True as spoken.

Because someday we'll understand each other.