Monday, February 3, 2014

15 Photos: 2014 Itoman Okinawa Sabani Boat Parade

wooden sabani boats, sailing, flags and pennants

An invitation was extended to go with the Umi Maru for this event.

When a rainbow appeared above the boat, I knew that was a sign it would be a great day.

sailing sabani boat flags

 The weather was kind of iffy so, I figured I'd shoot some flags while still ashore.

sabani boats preparing to sail, good luck pennants

 Each boat had displayed banners, bamboo and pine, hoping for a good year of fishing.

sailing sabani boats in parade, Itoman

This is me shooting photos from aboard the Umi Maru.

They outfitted me with a life jacket and told me where to sit for the ride.

I'd show you a photo of the boat tilting the other way but, don't want to make anybody seasick.

Sailing sabani boats

 The crew on the Umi Maru consisted of two guys and two girls with paddles.

Those sabani boats are heavy but, move incredibly fast.

p[addling sailing sabani boats

 Trying to get photos of every boat, in good light, was a real challenge.

one man sailing sabani boat

When I got a chance, I snitched one of the gal's paddles.

The camera on a tripod was held between my knees so I could paddle away.

sailing sabani with paddles and flags

It doesn't take much effort to get these boats moving.

sailing sabani paddle near Itoman Bridge

A husband and wife could do it, if they got together.

sailing sabani boats docked in Itoman Harbor

When we got to the other end of the port, I walked funny, for awhile.

Sort of a drunken sailor walk, because the earth don't move like the ocean.

Gathering at shrine in Itoman

Everybody paraded up to a shrine for Lunar New Years, prayer and offerings.

prayer and offerings for safe fishing and good harvest

They are Uminchu, "people of the sea" and, they come to this shrine to worship.

worship at Hakugindo Shrine, Itoman

Offerings are tossed into the cave at Hakugindo Shrine for a good reason.

It assures future success for fisherman and all the uminchu.

So, I tossed some coins in there and prayed for them, too.

crowd and view of torii at Hakugindo Shrine, Itoman, Okinawa

The Commisioner of the Itoman Sailing Club had everyone gather for a group photo.

sailing sabani boats prepare for return to starting point of parade

It started to rain, again as the boats were preparing to return to the starting point.

So, I turned-in my life jacket because, I'm really not that kind of sailor.

I'll work on it. OK ?

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