I could see many things in each shops at Shopping Street of Sugamo Togenuki JIZO Avenue. I want to introduce some. These are “Taiyaki(鯛焼き)”,”Rice Cracker(Senbei 煎餅)” “Zouri(草履)” “Setta(雪駄)” “Geta(下駄)” “Chanchanko(ちゃんちゃんこ)” “Kanreki-costume(還暦衣装)” and “Shio-Daifuku(塩大福)”.

Japanese traditional footwear Geta

A geta(下駄) is made of paulownia wood.
It’s mine.
Actually, I usually wear a Geta during summer season.

These are very cool Geta(下駄) selections.

Japanese Traditional footwear Geta.

I like white thong Geta.
This Geta is lightweight made from paulownia wood.
Do you wanna try it ?

What is Geta(下駄) ?
A geta is a Japanese traditional footwear, which has a thong and wooden spikes in its sole. Flat wooden spike (3 cm height and 2 cm width) as its sole. And it has been useful for walking when the road is muddy because of its height.

It makes a characteristic sound “Calan Colon” when we walk because it is made of wood. Therefore, the sound makes good atmosphere by walking with a Yukata style in the day of the festival and fireworks or the town walk of the hot-spring resort.

Japanese Traditional footwear Geta.

These are one-tooth(spike)-geta, we call a “Ipponba-Geta”.
It’s also called as Tengu-Geta.

Generally, Geta has two toothed(spikes) but “one-tooth(spike)-geta” is also available. It’s for walking in a mountain road. In addition, it’s used by monks and Buddhist priests(Yamabushi) who had a training in the mountain. It is also called as “Tengu geta” because a Tengu had worn it.
Nowadays, from children to adults are using “One tooth(spike) Geta” for training their legs and developing their sense of balance but long time ago, entertainers or acrobats wore it to show off their ability in balancing.
What is Tengu and Yamabushi ?Click Tengu Page!

This is a Tetsu-Geta.
It’s made of steel so it’s very heavy.

Try to wear it if you want to be strong. But I’ve never seen people who use it, I’ve seen it only on TV or some characters in the comic books. That’s why I can’t prove its effectiveness, I don’t have any responsibility if you get hurt. Honestly speaking, I really wanted to have it when I was a child.

This is a “Pokkuri-Geta(ぽっくり下駄)”.

Pokkuri-Geta is footwear for a “Kamuro(かむろ)” who attends a “Yoshiwara’s Oiran” and a “Shimabara’s Tayuu“. In addition, a younger “geiko” who is called “Maiko” or “Hangyoku” wears it. Also, ordinary little girls are wearing it when they are celebrating of “Shichi-Go-San(七五三)“.
Recently, it’s also used at coming-of-age ceremony or wedding ceremony. It’s side part was painted by luxury gold- lacquer and a bell was inserted inside of it. Because it sometimes, they insert a bell inside so that it will create a sounds while walking. And that’s the reason why they are known with different names “Okobo” “Koppori” “Kobokobo” and so on.
It tends to confuse with ”Oiran-Geta” of ”Yoshiwara” but it’s different from it.

This is a “Oiran-Geta(花魁下駄)”.

*Yoshiwara Oiran(吉原花魁) Shimabara Tayuu(嶋原太夫) ⇒ Wikipedia Oiran
*Geiko(芸子) Maiko(舞子) hanngyoku(半玉) ⇒ Wikipedia Geisha
*Shichi-Go-San(七五三) ⇒ Wikipesia Shichi-Go-San(七五三)

Kamuro(かむろ・禿) “Kamuro” is an apprentice of “Yuujo(遊女)” and little girl who will become “Yuujo” in the future. Also, the age of 7 to 8, girls who are bought by a “Yukaku(遊郭)” that is like a prostitute houses or a red-light district or the girls who was born from “Yuujo”.

Generally, a “Yuujo” is a prostitute but a Yuujo has not only meaning of prostitute because they made men happy without sexual intercourse.
It’s said that they didn’t have certain house so they are traveling around that’s why they are also called “Asobime(遊女)”. “Asobime(遊女)” of Kanji translate directly is Playing Girls. Another legend says that “Yuujo” is a woman who let customers play.

“Yuujo” was earning money with prostitution or performance on the street during traveling but they sometimes encountered dangerous problems that’s why they used mediator to avoid some danger. Gradually, they don’t act for money on the street and agents who introduce customers to “Yuujo” appeared. The agent managed them to earn money after that the agent made a house for “Yuujo”. The house for “Yuujo” is “Yukaku(遊郭)”.

This geta is for female.
It’s usually worn when they wear a Kimono and a Yukata.

浴衣 Yukata

Let’s forecast the weather of tomorrow!

When most Japanese were young, we forecasted the weather of tomorrow using the Geta.
We swing our foot and release the Geta from our foot.
If the Geta show the reverse it’ll rain tomorrow.
If the Geta show the front it’ll fine tomorrow.
If the Geta show the side it’ll be cloudy tomorrow.
If the Geta show not both it may be a thunderstorm.
Of course this way of weather forecast is obscure.

*You can buy a Geta in any place beside Sugamo, internet or other footwear shops.

Read more…
★Rice Cracker(Senbei 煎餅) 



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