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  • Shauno

Update from Japan: Ainu Culture

After staying for 3 days in Tokyo, I took the plane to Tomakomai (in Hokkaido), where my grand parents live. Tomakomai is a beautiful and relaxing place, just populated enough not to be inconvenient and has easy access to the stations where you can catch a train to Sapporo.

Even the nearest public park look amazing. (Photo)

It is always great to see my grand parents, talking about life and whats new. Reuniting with our cat Chi-cchi is one of the highlights too.

In tomakomai i was interested in visiting towns of Ainu culture, there is a open-air cultural museum featuring a replicated Ainu village, exhibits & traditional folk dances in Shiraoi - town within a 30 minutes drive from Tomakomai.

The reason to why i was so interested in visiting visiting towns of Ainu culture is because Akira Ifukube, the composer behind the Sonata for violin piano which we performed at the Tsunami Violin Concert Tour was born in Kushiro, Hokkaido and is known to have combined elements of Ainu culture into his music. Unfortunately i was unlucky this time, the replicated village was under reconstruction.

So the next day i decided to visit the local Tomakomai Museum which has recently been remade. Inside, they of course had historical descriptions and objects from the Ainu culture! They even had instruments on display and i was able to hear snippets of their sound.

Going back a few days:

In the 2nd full day in Tokyo i went to the Planitarium in Ikebukuro Sunshine city.

I watched their Limited time screening 'Attack on Titan IN THE DOME' planetarium, followed by their 'Starlight Healing' planetarium. The Starlight Healing planetarium has a scent feature. They introduce a few scents at the beginning of the planetarium and while the scenery changes - they release different scents. It was a wonderful experience and i would love go again when i go back. They seem to have different collaboration planetariums every now and then.



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