Wishing Tree at Little Tokyo

One thing that I loved about NYC and now, Los Angeles, is that they have a series of cities inside the major city. You’re walking around and suddenly you’re transported to a completely different reality and culture.

This weekend we had some cravings for noodles, so naturally, we ended up at Little Tokyo. While we were waiting for seats on the restaurant where I probably had one of the best Ramens of my life, I noticed this Tree and instantaneously liked it:

As I understood, is about an old Japanese tradition and it all started with a love story, and has to do with stars aligning in the sky:

Basically, a girl works too much to praise her dad, and doesn’t have time to meet anyone. Her dad sets a meeting between her and another boy who also works too much. They fall in love and get married. But loving each other consumes too much time and they can’t focus on their work. So the dad separates them. The girl gets depressed, so her dad lets her see her beloved one, but only on the 7th day of the 7th month. However, there’s a river between them, and if it rains, they will have to wait until the next year…

And with each story comes a tradition. Until nowadays, people write their best wishes and hang on a bamboo tree. And on mid August, it will all be thrown on a river or set on fire. It’s called the Tanabata festival.

The owner of a craft store in the Japanese Village Plaza thought it was a good idea to bring this practice here. And it worked so well that the three is still there, so if you hurry you may still find a way to let your wishes there.

It reminded me of my “My Christmas Tree” in Rio, that I created when we were facing a social war and decorated with tweets wishing more peace in Rio. And as far as I know, it’s getting better there! : )

 

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