If you are puzzled about this cat, well, I was puzzled too. I was walking through a very small shrine just minutes away from my house and tucked away on the grounds was this goofy looking cat figurine beckoning good luck with both paws. It sat at the base of rather serious looking stone tablet which I expect was commemorating some auspicious event or person. It was so unexpected and I laughed when I saw it.
Ah, good-luck cat, I do hope your beckoning does the trick!
Bring it on! (^.~)/
(Those are plovers flying across the cat's tummy. Plovers dart through the high waves of the sea and brave strong winds while looking for food. As a result, they are seen as symbols of strength and perseverance.)
Top Photo: Original Photo
Bottom Photo: I went back on another day and took this to show the larger context. All those animal figurines are Chinese zodiac figurines that are discarded once their year is over.
3/2/2020 Update: The cat is no longer there. It has been replaced with the dancing boar seen in the photo on 1/2/2020. I'm curious as to what happened to it!
Year of the Rat has just arrived so it's goodbye to year of the boar. I'm a little sad to see it go (I'm a boar) but looking forward to seeing what the new year brings.
In Japan, a new year means new Chinese zodiac figurines for your house. The old ones get thrown out or returned to the local shrine where they may have come from in the first place. And that's where I saw these 2 boar figurines. They were tucked under the side of the main shrine joining other discarded figurines from the past. (If you look carefully you can see a monkey and a dog from recent years.) To be honest, we keep ours. In 12 years I'll bring them out again and they'll be as good as new! (^.~)
Wishing you all a very Happy New Year! May 2019 be filled with love, laughter and joy!
We woke up the first day of 2019 to gorgeous weather - not a cloud in the sky and highs of +10C. As usual we spent the morning with family and then went to visit a local shrine - one I have visited almost every year since I came to Japan over 30 years ago. I always feel nostalgic when we visit as the sights and smells bring back memories of my very early years in Japan. There is also a welcoming familiarity as we make our way through the grounds and festivities in a route we have perfected over the years. First the back entrance, then the open area to check the children doing the lion dance, then the bridge, then the shop selling "baby castella" (similar to doughnut holes), and then... Ah, the list goes on. It was a beautiful day to be out and about and a great day to begin a new year!
I took a few photos while we were there only to discover that my camera battery was on its very last legs and I, of course, had left everything back at the house. Ah well, isn't that the way! I did manage to eek about a few more photos from that dying battery and here are the results.
I'm a photographer based in Osaka, Japan. I love to take photographs. I like to share.