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:






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