Throwing Beans 豆撒き

Today Somemaru had a rather busy day, which included an interview at NHK, an appearance at the Hanjôtei hiruseki show (today was an installment of the week-long celebration of Katsura Miyakomaru’s promotion to the name Katsura Shiodai IV), and being the guest of honor–along with his artistic family–for mame maki (bean throwing) at the temple Donkaiji.

Though I was previously in Japan for more than five years, this was my first time to experience the spring Setsubun celebration, which takes place each year on February 3rd.

The air was quite festive at Donkaiji–there were a few hundred people gathered in anticipation of catching “Lucky Beans” (roasted soy beans), which are typically tossed out by religious men, celebrities, or others specially selected. These beans are supposed to bring you good luck in the new year, especially if you eat the same number of beans as your age.

After mame maki we had a dinner party in one of the back rooms of the temple. Our group drank and made merry as the head monk chanted sutras nearby in the main hall. For the record, I had no sake to drink as I was the designated driver.

Here are a few pictures from the night’s festivities:

今日、師匠が忙しい一日を過ごしました。NHKでインタービューもあって、繁昌亭の昼席の出番(今週は四代目桂塩鯛師匠(前桂都丸)の襲名披露宴)もありました。最後に一門と呑海寺(どんかいじ)の豆撒きの特別ゲストとしての出番もありました。

前に5年間も日本に滞在したことがあるんですが、2月3日に行う節分の豆撒きの経験はなかったです。今日は初めてでした。

呑海寺でとても陽気な雰囲気でした。「副豆」を受け取るのを楽しみに待っていた人々は数百人もいました。普段は、修道士やセレブ、または特別に選ばれた人が豆を撒きます。この豆を食べたら、特に歳の数を食べたら、運が良くなるみたいです。

豆撒きの後、お寺の奥の部屋で宴会が行われました。お坊さんが近くにあった本堂で念仏していたんですが、林家一門はお酒を飲みながら陽気に騒いでいました。一応記録しておきますが、私は運転手だったので、お酒を飲みませんでした。

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