My first 夏祭り!

坂道のメロディ by YUKI

As with every year, the Japanese School (Changi Campus) organises a 夏祭り (Natsumatsuri – Summer Festival). Always received with overwhelming response, I was extremely lucky to have a friend who knew someone studying the Japanese language there – to get first dibs on some tickets! Especially since I witness the long queue for those who had to get tickets on the spot – under the hot Singapore sun.

Many were dressed in Yukata – a casual kimono worn during summer, even some of my friends. I was really jealous, since I couldn’t afford one before the festival. They are quite pricey for a student who hasn’t been working.  That will change next year though! For now, I can survey everyone’s yukata and see which design I like the best!

My favourite so far was the pretty lady on the right of this photo, in a yukata featuring beautiful blossoming pink peonies? on a black background. On the other hand, I am not a fan of a jet black background as it is summer! Summer is supposed to be bright, colourful and playful! I guess I have to review my choices? Still, I think her yukata was really pretty and she even put effort into doing her hair with a little accessory.

The event had a lot of locals as well as parents and students of the school itself. The children were all dressed in adorable yukatas and even had matching bags. Makes you want to take a picture, doesn’t it? Don’t worry, most are extremely happy to oblige for a mini phototaking if you ask politely!

The entire school was full of things to do, and eat! There were also tons of stalls spread out all over the indoor section of the first floor of the school, from bentos to stuffed toys.

Even though there were more than enough stalls, everyone still had to wait in a queue. They were pretty quick though, so no problems there!

Oh! Do you want to guess what my favourite stall is, with the hot weather?

It is…….

the Beer store!

Nothing says awesome more than an ice cold Kirin beer on a hot sunny afternoon!

I absolutely loved the foam on this – in fact, they knew it was so good, they gave a tiny spoon just for you to scoop up the foam like ice cream to taste it. I was so tempted to get another cup….but no one would allow me to!

They did allow me to get a bite to go with my beer though. A really cute one too:

Panda-yaki! It is basically taiyaki but made using a panda mould. I almost couldn’t bear to chomp on this cutie.

Also, this was definitely one of the nicest I have ever eaten, the dough was just nice and chewy with generous amounts of chocolate filling! It was a tad pricey though, but that was expected.

I then accompanied a friend to have her hair styled for free at one of the booths – we waited more than an hour! My goodness! But it was really worth it because her hair turned out bloody amazing. HOWEVER, I had a horrid experience while queuing! There were horrid queue cutters. They were a group of 2 boys and 2 girls around17- 18, I gathered from their conversation about their student life in a junior college. I wouldn’t have minded if they were just cutting me, but they were trying to sneak in front of 3 innocent japanese children! These girls have been in front of us for ages and I knew that that group weren’t there. Anyway, I told them off and they moved back….to cut in front of a group of lower secondary school girls that were right behind us! Seriously? I think they have a problem – constantly trying to find people younger and weaker than them to take advantage off! Obviously, I couldn’t stand it and started a verbal battle with the idiot. Who, by the way, gave me the stupidest excuse ever: “My friend queued here earlier for us and we took over.” I have been queueing with both groups from the start till then, and I have not seen that “friend” he mentioned. And if that was the case, why did your group move backwards earlier instead of confronting me about it? Oh – While the spineless doofus was trying to defend his stolen spot, his group remained quiet. I knew I was definitely right and they were guilty! I continued this argument for a good while with the lower secondary group watching intently…and one of the girls couldn’t take it no more and said: “Thank you but it’s okay, we know there are EVIL people in this world.” HA! I wanted to HI-5 and applaud that brave young girl for her statement!

I absolutely cannot believe someone, let along a whole group, would do something so despicable. Come on, those kids are younger than you!

It angers me to talk about this again!!! Ahhh!!!

You know what it’s over. So, let’s disperse this negativity with something adorable!

An-pan man mask! All the kids had these faces masks featuring different japanese cartoon characters on them…I really wanted one but I couldn’t find any on sale by the time I finished queueing.

By the way, she was one of the girls queuing in front of me. She was so adorable and cute, and was queueing with her sister and friend. The three of them were just enjoying the atmosphere and playing little hand games with each other as they wait!

& The event doesn’t just take place indoors. They had a whole stage set up in the middle of their field where performances and dances happened.

Everyone got their picnic on, with many of them having prepared their own food and got a spot on the grass to watch the performances – the best spots are obviously first come, first serve!

It was a really great time, with everyone getting really into the mood and dancing! With even many of the locals wearing yukatas, it definitely felt like the real deal. Damn, I can’t wait till next year to go for this event again!

& Hopefully this time, I don’t meet any idiotic queue cutters, and for them to meet me as well, because I am more than ready to unleash terror on them this time! Hmph!

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