Monday, July 28, 2014

Yonabaru Tug-O-War 5 Motion GIFs

 A Centuries Old Tradition




This tsunahiki (tug-o-war) has been going on in Okinawa, Japan for over 400 years.

And, there were probably 10,000 or more participants on the field, yesterday.

Here's a peek, at what, I saw through the camera viewfinder, before the tug started.

tug-o-war parade, motion GIF

Just like anywhere else in the Ryukyu islands, the rope comes in two sections.

The ropes were carried in a procession, with royalty being carried on top.

parade,Yonabaru,tsunahiki 2014, GIF

The teams, challenging each other come from the east or, west sides of town.

The folks, riding the ropes, wear period costumes from the old Ryukyu Dynasty.

Once the parade entered the field, I followed them inside, to get a closer look.

lively crowd,tug-o-war

There was a pretty lively crowd crowd in there.

For a second or two, I wished the cameras would have stayed at home.

women dancing,kimonos

All these gals, wearing summer kimonos were dancing and chanting.

And, some of them were offering me cups of, whatever they were drinking.

Dang.  I like drinking but, I had work to do.

So, I politely turned down the drink and just did a little dance with them.

joining of the ropes,GIF
While they were laughing, they quit flapping their arms around and, quit wiggling.

That gave me a chance, to zoom-in and get this shot.

This shows the wooden pole, used to join the two ropes together.

Coverage of This Event Requires a Team



This year, I got in with the crowd. The tug, started rather quickly.

That was when, I decided, it was time to climb a building, in order to view the rope.

By the time, I found enough elevation, the tug was over.

Next year, I know exactly where, I want to be, to catch that part of the event.

The Ryukyu Shimpo posted this video from 2011 on YouTube.

It gives an excellent presentation of the sights and sounds, you would encounter.

Read the Ryukyu Shimpo article (English) for more information.

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