This is me (arrow pointing to blond head in top picture, more obvious tall blond in bottom) carrying the shrine in the Shirayama Hakusan Matsuri. This is the most fun I've had in Japan--wonderful people, well lubricated (when we ram people's houses and detour through rice fields, are we following a religious tradition or are we just drunk?). The man holding the flag is Mr. Horie.
Damn, this thing is heavy! Here we are trying to get control of it after tossing it up into the air (or as high as we could manage after three hours of this).
No, I don't know why we're ramming a hillside (three times, yet). There must be a reason.
These three pictures were given to me by the Mizoguchi family. I think Mrs. Mizoguchi took them. (She's Sexboy's mom!) Every few hundred meters, more or less, we'd spin the mikoshi (portable shrine) as in the picture on the right, toss it up and down a few times, then enjoy snacks, beer, and sake the neighbors would put out for us (left and middle pictures).


Note: With the exception of a few group photos used by permission of the photographers and a few other photos credited to others, all photos on this site are © Peter M. Rivard. All are welcome to use my images for noncommercial purposes; however, I ask that anyone who does so give me credit for my own work. Please do not use photos credited to photographers other than myself (such as those on this page); although I have permission to publish them on this web site, I do not have authority to allow someone else to do so.